Bouncing Bench Press

These are some pictures taken from the training of some throwers:

Now I would like to know what is the coach who introduced these methods: use of the bounce and use of cushion.
What would be the purpose? do a kind of plyometric exercise? Do they use the pre-stretch, stretch shortening cycle? Do they want to turn out the II fibers ? What are the benefits? I’m doubtful of this efficacy.

The bounce has been around as long as the bench press. Its a cheat method to allow the athlete to get past the sticking point (usually the bottom 4" of the lift) with momentum to drive up weights that would be otherwise to heavy to handle. The cushion just takes some of the punishment out of the lift. Lately, the use of chains and/or bands provide progressive resistance, allowing for heavier loads at the top and lighter loads at the bottom. I don’t recommend the bounce method.

you will find yourself in a plateau quicker than ever before if you start bouncing your bench press

Can you tell me why this is so?

let me go ahead and hold off on my comments …

personally: for me it certainly did. but i don’t have any evidence to prove that.

My problem was- I couldn’t bounce the heavy weight off my chest, so my max suffered. But i could bounce all the weight i trained with no problem. Thus not training the deepest part of the bench press and not strengthening my chest proportionately. It led to 0 gains.

The video shows guys lifting some really, really heavy weights. If that is where I’d plateau, then I’m fine with that.

On the other hand, I used to use the bounce and ended up with a nagging injury for years. I’m not a fan of the technique.

they are also using a giant pad… but not everyone in the video was using it

those guys that were bouncing 300+ pounds off their chest-- OUCH – thats gotta be dangerous

I have seen some throwers do it in the gym. I walked out, I didn’t understand the reason for doing it and I didn’t think the injury risk was outweighed by the performance benefit.

What qualities have you guys found/developed by performing the bench press catering to sprinting ability not throwing?.

Very keen for responses?.

One reason it helps is that you are using a load throughout much of the lift that you would otherwise not be able to handle. I think board presses are much safer and much more controlled. As hemann implies, you should work the full range of motion, but adding in some board presses will allow you to lift loads well in excess of your 1RM, leading to more rapid improvements in max strength.

several of those lifts were actually in excess of 300 KILOS.

Ulf Timmermann also used bounce and pad on chest in a bench that he called “power bench”:

Yes Timmermann and the other East Germans were doing it with a pad really fast like Martinez at 0.55 and Kanter at 2.05 in the first clip in this thread.

That exercise was chosen as a plyo activity, fairly specific to throwing. The purpose was not to increase their BP max. so I don’t think you should compare it with the aforementioned ‘Westside’ methods.

Arsi Harju,Olympic gold medalist in Sydney also used a pad for explosive bench pressing.

A great exercise for throwers.

Any benefit for sprinters? over an exercise like 10lb-20lb plate arm swings for explosive bursts?.

Question … are they really reaping the benefits of increased bar speed? Or are they just dropping the weight and bouncing it, essentially just turning it into a regular board press? It looks to me like the bar speed slows down considerably when the bounce momentum slows

Isn’t it based more on your perception of moving the bar fast versus actual bar speed? I guess in simple physics, F=MxA. I would think the A would have a finite limit, where theoretically the M is limitless. I tend to have my athletes use that type of method(no bounce) on 60% load. All about reversing motion explosively in an almost plyo fashion. I would be wary of doing this method under heavy loads (90%+).

There is no plyometric component to this exercise. There is no stretch reflex. In fact the muslces are completely unloaded at the bottom.

If not intending to improve max strength, they may be artifically increasing bar velocity to be more speed specific, maybe to work on RFD rather than a max strength. Not like board presses at all if that is the intended goal. I still don’t like it, and I think there is some ego stroking going on.

That is often the case. Ego leads to injury in my experience.

Except that any acceleration force must be over and above the force of gravity.