incline bench pressThe incline bench press is a great exercise for building your upper chest. It also is a very efficient overall mass builder for the upper body. Unfortunately though, many people perform the incline bench press incorrectly. Here are the top three mistakes while performing the incline bench press.

1. Bar Path Is Too High

A lot of people performing this exercise lower the bar under their chin, almost even with their collar bones. This is terrible for your shoulders as it causes your elbows to flare out and puts a lot of strain on your shoulders and rotator cuffs.

Solution: Change your bar path to hit just above the nipple line, or center of your chest. This will force your upper arm to form approximately a 45-60 degree angle to your torso, which is a much safer and more effective joint position for this movement.

2. Too Much Back Arching

The back arching that some people have while performing the incline bench press is flat out ridiculous. Sure it allows you to move more weight, but as your back arches the exercise angle changes. The incline bench that you thought you were doing, is now angled to be a flat bench exercise. This defeats the purpose of the exercise.

Solution: Check out this video by Kentucky Fried Fitness. They highlight this problem and give you the correct solution for this issue.

3. Short Range of Motion

People shorten the range of motion and sacrifice form to add more weight. This is the biggest rookie mistake you can make! Lifting with your ego will only get you hurt and put you further away from your goals.

Solution: Use a full range of motion with a weight you can control. If you do not have the flexibility to bring the bar to your chest, work on flexibility! There are plenty of chest stretching videos out there to help you effectively gain flexibility. YouTube search is your friend!

If you found these tips for the incline bench press useful, be sure to share this article with a friend!

Also… Don’t forget to join the 1500+ athletes that follow the Shaping Yourself Newsletter. You will receive exclusive information, site updates and fitness tips right in your email!  Best of all… it’s FREE!

[sc:responsivenew]