Beyond the Barbell Press: Exploring Variations & Benefits
The barbell bench press and overhead press have often been deemed as the ultimate lifts to demonstrate strength in the gym. For many beginners it can be a bit intimidating.
That’s where pressing variations come in. These are exercises like push-ups, dumbbell presses, and machine presses that use similar movements to the barbell, but with a twist. They’re not just warmups; they’re potent tools to build a stronger, safer foundation for when you finally grab that bar.
The variations engage your muscles in diverse ways, hitting your shoulders, triceps, core, and even your back for a balanced and well-rounded workout. No muscle group gets left behind, preventing imbalances and setting you up for success with the barbell.
These variations are also helping you perfect your technique. With lighter weights, you can focus on owning your form, learning body control, proper timing, and that essential “feeling” of the press. This lays the groundwork for flawless barbell technique, minimizing the risk of injury and maximizing your power potential.
Not to mention the confidence boost that comes with each successful rep! As you master variations and gradually increase weight and difficulty, you’ll feel your strength and skill level skyrocket. In the longterm, all of these movement can be used as accesories or even finishers with a high enough intensity.
The journey to mastery is paved with smart preparation, not just raw ambition. So, let the variations be your guide, and soon, you’ll be repping out the barbell!
Pressing variations & Accessories at Capital Strength
Your bodyweight chest workout that builds strength, technique, and confidence. You can work your way down from an incline pushup in the rack down to the floor for a full ROM pushup.
Dips are a fantastic upper-body exercise that primarily targets your triceps (the muscles on the back of your upper arm) but also engages your chest, shoulders, and core.
dumbbell shoulder press
A fantastic exercise for building strength and definition in your shoulder. If you have any imbalances, using a weight in each and can help strengthen each side independently.
dumbbell bench press
Unlike its barbell counterpart, dumbbells offer a wider range of motion and engage stabilizing muscles to a greater degree, promoting balanced strength development.
barbell bench press
Often considered the king of upper body exercises, is a staple in many workout routines for a reason. It’s a powerful exercise that engages your chest, shoulders, triceps, and even your core.
barbell incline press
The barbell incline press takes things up a notch by targeting your upper chest. You can target more shoulder by increasing the angle of the bench so you are pressing more overhead.
barbell overhead press
The barbell overhead press sculpts your shoulders, core, and even legs with a mighty lift straight overhead. It is considered an advanced exercise for how much full-body stability is required for a proper press.
This is a cross between a landmine press and a shoulder press. This unique movement pattern that is a great way to begin overhead pressing to practice getting under the bar safely.
smith machine chest press
This is a valuable tool, especially for beginners, but it’s important to understand its limitations. For well-rounded chest development, it’s beneficial to mix in free weight exercises like dumbbell exercises.
cable chest press
A cable chest press can offer more stability that a dumbbell and help you get a really great stretch during your workout to get a great mind-muscle connection.
multiflex chest press
This is a niche exercise you can’t do at many gyms! It is a heavy chest exercise that works on the mid and top ranges of motion to help you improve your overall strength.
machine chest press
A great finisher for your chest to really get to blood pumping. Machines offer so much stability to let you press even more weight than you could before.
machine shoulder press
Shoulder pressing can be difficult to get the shoulder ROM down. Machines can help you practice while your increase your upper body mobility.
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