Beginners to the weight training world quickly become acquainted with the basics – bench press, military press, deadlifts and squats. At least they should. These are all fantastic foundation exercises to build your physique and strength from. However there comes a point where we need to get a bit more advanced and technical in order to keep things moving. Below we are paying special attention to more advanced exercises to help you increase strength on your bench press, military press and squat.
Get strong on these exercises and you will grow!
1 – Pin Press
You are familiar with the regular bench press, great. The pin press is performed within a power rack rather than a conventional bench. We want to set the safety pins approximately 4-5 inches away from your chest in order to shorten the range of motion on each rep performed. In doing so we can immediately increase the amount of weight you can load on the bar which is the point of this exercise. Increasing power and strength in a specific phase of the rep. As you lower the bar to the safety pins allow the pins to take all of the weight before pressing in order to increase the amount of muscle fibres required to get the bar moving again.
2 – Push Press
You are familiar with the military press, great. The push press is a variation of an overhead press with a more advanced technique. Whilst standing upright and in position ready to press the bar above your head you allow a slight bend in your knees to occur and ‘’push’’ up with your body as you press, creating additional momentum. In doing so we can increase the poundages you can handle on your overhead press. Be wary though, there is a fine line between push pressing and cheating!
3 – Partial Squats & Box Pause Squats
You are familiar with squats, great! Far too many people do not go to parallel when they squat which limits their progress immensely. However, on partial squats we are going to avoid going parallel to the floor and go approximately 2/3s of the way down. In doing so we can load the bar up with more weight and improve strength & power in the final part of your squat.
Box pause squats are next on the agenda. Using a bench as a marker, squat down until your backside touches it and then pause for 2 seconds before exploding up to the top as fast as you can. This will help develop speed and power at the lower half of your squat. Work with 50-55% of your 1RM here and make sure you are explosive on the way up!