How to Use the Safety Squat Bar to Improve Your Bench and Shoulder Press


When most individuals see the security squat bar (SSB) the solely thought that goes by means of their head is that it’s only for the objective of carry that’s in its identify. After a few years of affected by shoulder ache I’ve discovered one other nice use for the bar: Bench and overhead urgent!

Safety Squat Bar and the Bench Press

The first and most essential half when performing the bench press with a security squat bar is to take away the handles. By doing this, you permit for the movement to be fluid as the bar descends to the chest as opposed to the handles digging into your physique.

To provoke the motion, you’ll take the similar setup as a conventional bench press. Make positive if you lie on the bench you’ve 5 factors of contact: Feet, hips, shoulders, and head, then you’ll take the similar bench grip width you utilize on the conventional bench press.

Author’s Note: I at all times advocate using a spotter with a brand new bench press variation, so after getting set, have your spotter present an excellent liftoff, then observe you as you progress by means of the motion. 

Up to this level the motion has been the very same as the conventional bench. Now that the bar is over your chest, that is the place the minor change takes place. As you decrease the bar, the pads that the handles join to will make contact just under the glenohumeral joint. Once contact has been made, let the bar descend/roll, so that each one of the padding sits in your chest. Once the descent is completed, press aggressively up equally to an ordinary bench press.

The greatest advantage of this press variation, as I mentioned in the introduction, is how a lot it helps with shoulder ache. This ache may be due to prior damage, overuse, or anatomical construction. Due to the padding on the bar it provides a little bit of cushion in addition to barely places the shoulder in a extra advantageous and protected place when performing the press. Secondly, these of us who’ve prevented urgent like our lives relied on it might now get again in the sport.

All in all, each the conventional bar and the security squat bar can stimulate the similar muscle teams. Although, if you’re a strongman or weightlifter, and you’re in search of methods to hold your shoulders from getting banged up, then this variation could possibly be value testing for longevity functions.

Safety Squat Bar and the Overhead Press

Just like the bench press variation with this bar, the overhead press will primarily observe the similar precept. You will do all the things the very same as a standard barbell press, you’re simply utilizing a distinct bar. To start the motion, the bar must be positioned able comparable to how it might be for the squat, aka handles going through away. Take the similar grip that you simply use on your normal overhead press and let the padding that normally rests in your neck sit in your clavicles with the deal with padding resting in your chest.

From right here, carry out an ordinary overhead press. Due to the padding the bar will likely be barely extra out in entrance of you. This makes it comparable to urgent one thing like an axle. Make positive if you end the rep that the bar will not be too far out in entrance of the physique, and stacked over the shoulders, hips, and ankles. Descend slowly and let the padding make contact earlier than performing any subsequent repetitions, ensuring to by no means lose tightness in the decrease again and lats.

Just like the bench press, this may assist alleviate shoulder ache and permit an athlete to proceed overhead urgent even when a conventional barbell causes discomfort for them. It additionally provides a small diploma of issue due to it being situated barely anteriorly on the physique in contrast to an ordinary bar. This can add to one’s urgent strength on an ordinary barbell overhead press, or profit athletes who don’t have entry to a log or axle.

Incorporating the SSB for Pressing In Your Program

For the most half, utilizing the security squat bar for urgent motions is useful for individuals who have nagging shoulder accidents, or in the event that they compete in an endeavor that causes appreciable quantities of shoulder pressure (weightlifting, strongman, and many others).

SSB for Powerlifters

For powerlifters, I usually incorporate utilization of this bar when they’re additional out from competitors. This is due to them needing to be used to the conventional bar main up to a meet (specificity). Typically, the additional out from competitors the extra repetition work I’ll have an athlete do.

During this time it’s paramount that the shoulders keep as healthy as doable. If the probability of damage is lessened, then the athlete will likely be ready to train more durable and extra persistently. I’ll use the security squat bar solely if doable to reduce ache from urgent and have athletes do max effort, repetition effort, and pace work with it.

SSB for Strongman

Strongman is well-known to have at the very least one urgent occasion in a contest, so the bench press and overhead press are sometimes used to train higher physique strength. Typically, in case you train for strongman you’ve entry to a wide range of specialty bars that may already assist with the ache from urgent motions. Pressing with a log or a soccer/multi-grip bar is helpful because of this.

For those that don’t have entry to these, then the security bar comes to the rescue. When you think about the quantity of urgent that wants to be carried out, shoulder discomfort is probably going. Using the SSB is a method to train round it. For strongman athletes, I like to recommend utilizing it solely for a training part or solely on days when the shoulder is inflicting points performing conventional urgent motions.

SSB for Weightlifters

For weightlifters I’d advocate that you simply use this when you’re performing the majority of your bench urgent. Due to the normal navy press having main impacts on the jerk, I want not to mess with the fluidity and type of that motion. I want to solely apply it to overhead actions when athletes have vital shoulder discomfort.

Everyone doesn’t at all times have entry to security squat bar, however in case you do and expertise shoulder points from time-to-time, then these variations could possibly be value a strive!

Editor’s be aware: This article is an op-ed. The views expressed herein and in the video are the creator’s and don’t essentially replicate the views of BarBend. Claims, assertions, opinions, and quotes have been sourced solely by the creator.

Feature picture from @matbark1991 Instagram web page. 



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