Reverse Grip Bench: Technique, Benefits, Variations

reverse grip bench
reverse grip bench

When it comes to optimizing your chest workouts, there is one powerful exercise that often flies under the radar – the “Reverse Grip Bench.” If you’re on a quest for huge chest gains and looking to switch things up in your fitness routine, you’ve landed on the right page.

In this comprehensive guide, we’re going to explore the ins and outs of the Reverse Grip Bench exercise. From proper form to the surprising benefits it offers, we’ve got you covered. Whether you’re a fitness enthusiast or a newbie to weightlifting, understanding and incorporating the Reverse Grip Bench into your regimen can be a game-changer.

So, let us embark on this fitness journey together and discover how this bench can sculpt your chest and transform your workouts. Whether you’re seeking muscle growth, strength gains, or simply a fresh workout perspective, this exercise has something valuable to offer. Let’s dive in!

RELATED: Decline bench press

Technique for the Reverse Grip Bench Press:


When you’re gearing up for a reverse grip bench press, it’s crucial to get your setup just right:

  • Begin by lying down flat on a bench, making sure your back, shoulders, and buttocks are firmly in contact with it.
  • Plant your feet flat on the floor, roughly shoulder-width apart, to maintain stability during the exercise.
  • Keep your head, upper back, and butt in continuous contact with the bench throughout the movement.


The way you hold the barbell can make all the difference:

  • Reach up and grab the barbell with a grip that’s palms-facing-up, known as a supinated grip. Your hands should be a bit wider than shoulder-width apart.
  • Visualize holding the bar as if you were balancing a tray, with your thumbs wrapping around the bar for a secure hold.

Unrack the Bar:

Getting that barbell off the rack safely is the first step:

  • Lift the barbell off the rack, extending your arms fully, so it’s positioned directly above your chest.
  • Ensure your wrists remain straight, maintaining a strong grip on the bar throughout.


The downward phase of the exercise is where you work those muscles:

  • Lower the barbell in a controlled manner towards your lower chest or upper abdomen.
  • As you lower the bar, allow your elbows to naturally flare out to the sides. This contrasts with the traditional bench press, where your elbows typically point downward.


Don’t forget to breathe right for a smooth execution:

  • Inhale as you lower the bar down to your chest.


Now, it’s time to push that barbell back up:

  • Extend your arms fully to return the barbell to the starting position.
  • Exhale as you exert force to lift the barbell.


Keep those reps coming with proper form and control:

  • Complete the desired number of repetitions while maintaining good control throughout the movement.

Rack the Bar:

After a successful set, it’s time to rack that barbell safely:

  • Carefully place the barbell back on the bench press rack, ensuring it’s securely in place.

Remember, mastering the reverse grip bench press may take some practice, so focus on maintaining proper form, especially when starting out or increasing the weight. Safety and listening to your body should always be your top priorities.

Benefits of reverse grip bench:

Now, let’s explore the wonderful advantages that come with incorporating the reverse grip bench press into your fitness routine:

1. Enhanced Triceps Engagement: The reverse grip bench press places a greater emphasis on your triceps. This means that you’ll not only strengthen your chest but also develop those often-elusive triceps muscles, helping you achieve a well-rounded upper body.

2. Upper Pectoral Activation: Unlike the traditional bench press, which primarily targets the lower pectoral muscles, the reverse grip version places more stress on the upper part of your chest. This can help you achieve a more balanced and sculpted chest.

3. Reduced Shoulder Strain: Some individuals find that the reverse grip bench press is easier on their shoulders compared to the standard bench press. This can be particularly beneficial for those with shoulder issues or discomfort.

4. Versatility: This exercise isn’t just about hitting your chest and triceps. Depending on how you incorporate it into your routine, it can also engage your front deltoids and even work as a secondary movement for your shoulders.

5. Muscle Confusion: Switching up your routine with the reverse grip bench press can shock your muscles in a positive way. It introduces a new stimulus to your body, potentially leading to muscle growth and strength gains.

6. Improved Bench Press Performance: Strengthening your triceps and upper chest through the reverse grip bench press can enhance your performance in the standard bench press, helping you lift heavier weights and make progress more efficiently.

7. Aesthetic Appeal: Building strength and muscle in different areas of your chest and arms can contribute to a more balanced and aesthetically pleasing physique.

Incorporating the reverse grip bench press into your workout regimen can provide a host of benefits, whether you’re seeking to build muscle, improve strength, or simply add variety to your exercise routine. Remember to start with proper form and gradually increase the weight as you become more comfortable with the exercise.


Certainly, let’s wrap up this discussion in plain and simple English:

In conclusion, the reverse grip bench press is a valuable addition to your workout repertoire. It’s not just a change of pace but a way to target different muscle groups effectively.

By incorporating this exercise into your routine, you can strengthen your triceps, engage your upper chest, and reduce the strain on your shoulders. Plus, it adds variety, promotes muscle growth, and may even boost your performance in the standard bench press.

So, if you’re looking to spice up your chest workouts, give the reverse grip bench press a try. Just remember to start with proper form, gradually increase the weight, and always prioritize safety. With dedication and consistency, you can reap the rewards of this versatile exercise and work toward a stronger, more balanced upper body.


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