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  • DB Incline vs Flat

    Hey, I wanted to get your guys input on this since I know a lot of you guys on here are against flat barbell benching. Well, due to a nagging shoulder injury, I am dropping flat BB completely from my routine. Just not worth the risk of having a serious injury.

    I basically do an upper/lower split like DC, except I only rotate two movements per body part and I do not rest pause. I actually had flat bench in here because I wanted to maintain the strength during my cut, so I actually had two chest movements and one shoulder...but flat bench was just very low volume (maintenance).

    I was doing this for my chest/shoulder movements.

    Upper 1
    Flat Bench (medium weight x 2 reps x 1 set)
    Incline BB Bench (2 straight sets)
    Seated DB Shoulder Press (2 straight sets)

    Upper 2
    Flat Bench (heavy weight x 2 reps x 1 set)
    Seated BB Shoulder Press (2 straight sets)
    Incline DB Bench (2 straight sets)

    But now due to my left shoulder, I am dropping flat completely...My question is, should I swap out my DB incline for DB flat to compensate for losing flat BB bench? Or just not worry about flat bench at all, DB or otherwise? I intend to come back to flat bench eventually, so I was just trying to think of ways I can sort of maintain it so it doesn't drop dramatically when I come back to it.

    Thanks in advance for any feedback.

  • #2
    I use DB flat and have no shoulder problems at all. I recently had a SLAP tear and flat DB actually seems to be really good, no pain or discomfort

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    • #3
      Didn't have a lot of luck finding it but there is an old post where Dante is addressing flat bench and basically:

      The same 80 % of the pectoral is being worked whether you do flat,incline or decline. Different angles only change recruitment areas across the muscle about 20 %

      of course that is paraphrased

      There is a small reduction in volume from you dropping flat bench out, so its possible that might affect you. But are you now going to miss out on lower pec development cuz you stopped flat benching? Probably not

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      • #4
        I like both flat and incline db bench. Also, don't forget you could do a low (15-20 degree) incline db bench as well.
        www.JasonWojo.com | www.TrueProtein.com

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        • #5
          Originally posted by JasonWojo View Post
          I like both flat and incline db bench. Also, don't forget you could do a low (15-20 degree) incline db bench as well.
          Turns out I am using the lowest setting anyway, so I will just keep DB inclines in my rotation since I am still progressing on them. Ill swap em out to flat when I stall. Thanks for the replies everyone.

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          • #6
            IMO, decline is better than incline and flat. Most inclines are too delt dominant anyway, unless you're using an adjustable bench in which case slight inclines (how Yates did them) are a good option.
            Disclaimer: I am not a DC trainee/expert/guru/coach, anything I say is purely my opinion based on experience and research I've read

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Carlito Gambino View Post
              IMO, decline is better than incline and flat. Most inclines are too delt dominant anyway, unless you're using an adjustable bench in which case slight inclines (how Yates did them) are a good option.
              Agree with you on that one. The incline stations are about a 45 degree angle at LA fitness, way too steep. Since I already have seated DB and BB shoulder press in my rotation, it was counter productive. I now use the adjustable incline benches for both BB and DB incline (I do the BB's inside a power rack)...I would say it is about 30 degrees. I get really good chest recruitment because the ROM is sooooo much longer than my flat bench (I arch on flat).

              Ill leave decline bench for later when things start stalling...because of my rotator cuff tendonitis, I won't be able to support the heavy weights I will need to use on decline anyway (315+).

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              • #8
                How do you guys hold the DB's?

                I switched to DB's like 2 weeks ago and dont use a spotter.

                I'm able to pump them out after the initial throw to get into position but sometimes my arms mainly my wrist feel weird and feel like my arms are going to cross and drop the weight on my face.

                I am bringing up forearms up with my workouts but the DB's are hard to figure out on how to hold.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by j0n020 View Post
                  How do you guys hold the DB's?

                  I switched to DB's like 2 weeks ago and dont use a spotter.

                  I'm able to pump them out after the initial throw to get into position but sometimes my arms mainly my wrist feel weird and feel like my arms are going to cross and drop the weight on my face.

                  I am bringing up forearms up with my workouts but the DB's are hard to figure out on how to hold.
                  It depends. On flat, I like to keep my arms almost locked and fall back into position with the dumbbells already pressed up at lockout. On incline, I usually just lean back and throw the Dbs on my shoulders and press up.
                  My power is discombobulatingly devastating I could feel his muscle tissues collapse under my force. It's ludicrous these mortals even attempt to enter my realm.
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                  • #10
                    For me, I tend to scrap flat bench with Db's.... I like incline at about 20 degrees and then I follow those with declines which are about 10% down. For me when I am really working at TuT and using Dumb bells exclusively, I find I get the most our of these two movements. Now for strength and power, I do like BB flat bench. I do think it helps with thickness also, at least for me.

                    badham
                    Insanity =- doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different outcome.


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                    • #11
                      Low incline at most. If you are doing DB shoulder press you might just be better off going decline like these guys said. High incline benches and shoulder presses seem a little redundent to me.
                      Carlos Rodriguez
                      IFBB Pro League BBer
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                      • #12
                        It's funny how different our preferences are - I hate declines. lol
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                        • #13
                          I was never a fan, but a trainer buddy of mine talked me into doing them as he was spitting out the study results that seem to show declines recruit more chest muscle fibers then other chest exercises. Now I am not sure I buy that as i have read all. the data, and it is less than absolute either way, but since I have added them to my routine, my chest has improved in a short time after years of not filling out like i wanted it to. I have a long flat chest.. and decline Db's have given me more fullness for my chest. For others may not do anything.. i love flat BB bench because i can move some pretty good weight (my personal PR raw is 530), but it is not good for building muscle.. strength yes.

                          badham
                          Insanity =- doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different outcome.


                          Owner GF, a private board, and www.ultimatetrainingonline.com, a new board that is just starting up.

                          [IMG="http://ultimatetrainingonline.com/forums/images/vbulletin4_logo.PNG"][/IMG]

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                          • #14
                            use to flat bench every workout. don't at all anymore. if i had any bad pain doing an exercise i would simply stop doing it. why take a chance?
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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by irongear View Post
                              use to flat bench every workout. don't at all anymore. if i had any bad pain doing an exercise i would simply stop doing it. why take a chance?
                              Exactly, which is why I dropped it.

                              I am trying to be smart about the whole thing....Made a Dr appointment and doubled my rep ranges on everything upper body related. If it was last year, I would have just kept pushing heavy weight like an r-tard...I have grown since then . Lot of valuable info on this site...I don't post that much, but been searching here for the last 7 months and my training has taken off.

                              I am raising my barbell rep ranges from 4-6 to 8-12...DBs from 6-10 to 12-20. Starting at the top of the rep range....since I want to keep progressing, I plugged my numbers into an 1RM calculator so I could at least get a ball park estimate on what reps I need to hit to keep progressing at a lower weight.

                              In the meantime, I will keep up my rotator cuff exercises/stretching until I get into the doc June 10th...I know it is nothing serious (yet)...but if it does turn into something serious, my ectomorphic self will have a serious setback.

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