Bench Press - Muscles

Muscles

A generic bench press utilizes pectoralis major, anterior deltoid, long head of triceps brachii and coracobrachialis to flex the shoulder. It also uses predominately triceps brachii and anconeous to produce elbow extension. Wider hand spacing creates larger emphasis on shoulder flexion and narrower hand spacing utilises more elbow extension. Because of this a wider spacing is associated with working pectorals and narrower hand spacing is associated with working triceps.

In addition to the major phasic (dynamic) muscles the bench press also uses tonic (stabilising) muscles: scapular stabilisers (serratus anterior, middle and inferior trapezius), humeral head stabilisers (rotator cuff muscles), and core (transverse abdominis, obliques, multifidus, erector spinae, quadratus lumborum)

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