I was extremely excited to introduce my “Bench Most Dayz” program at Muscle & Strength. If you’ve started it, I hope you have started to see some impressive gains already.
If you haven’t, well what the hell are you waiting for?
One of the movements used in the program is the incline barbell press, which has long been a staple and favorite for lifters when it comes to building the upper chest.
I have learned how to do most things in my life through two ways: trial & error and learning directly from my mentors.
My approach and mindset towards training is pretty simple. I’m not going to sit back, wait, and wonder if something is going to work or not. I’m going to jump right in and try something, especially if a tip or suggestion comes straight from Arnold or Franco Columbo.
When it comes to lifting, it's always a good idea to rely on what worked for the greatest of all-time, Arnold Schwarzenegger.
As you may know, I am crazy enough to take on any and all training protocols, as my squatting every day for more than 400 days attests.
I’m also fortunate enough to call Arnold one of my business partners and mentors, which allows me some pretty incredible access to pick the brain of Arnold and some of the guys he trained with.
While visiting with Arnold a while back, I ran into former Mr. Olympia winner Franco Columbo, who was an unreal bodybuilder with one of the most impressive chests in history. You have obviously seen the upper chest striations when Franco was competing and it is an aspect of his physique that’s unmatched in the Golden Era.
He was also one of the strongest bodybuilders of his era – or probably any era – so naturally I wanted to pick his brain on all things incline pressing.
I asked him what his favorite chest exercise was that helped him build his chest and get those crazy upper chest striations. He told me he loved the wide-grip incline press that had a high touch point on the chest - a twist on the incline press that Arnold had mentioned to me on a couple of different occasions.
What he said made perfect sense, especially with what I see way too often with the incline bench and bench press overall.
I see so many people not use a full range of motion, either at the bottom with touching to their chest (and high on their chest with the incline press) or at the top with half-assed half reps. They wonder why they’re not getting growth in their chest when the answer is simple – use a full range of motion with a high touch point on your chest.
In reality, it’s quite simple, but too often ego gets in the way. The weight gets loaded up and all of a sudden you see people only going down to 4-5 inches off the chest and going up halfway. That does nothing.
The weight is not a big deal – just take some weight off and do the full movement. If you’re hitting a high spot on your chest when inclining, the way it stretches and stresses the muscle is absolutely huge.
Additionally, Franco said besides all the dumbbell flys they did, the go-to was the incline bench with a high arch and high touch point. If he’s telling me this, you best believe I’m going to apply it to my training.
Check out the video and apply this principle to your chest training. If it worked wonders for Franco and Arnold, it can definitely pave the way to your own chest development.
If you’re into increasing your chest muscularity – and I’m assuming the answer is obvious there – watch the video, take notes and head straight to the gym to emulate this movement.