Gironda Bench Press to Neck -
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Display Name Post: Gironda Bench Press to Neck        (Topic#12914)
Jack C
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06-26-07 11:39 AM - Post#316041    



Reg Park confirmed Gironda's advocacy of the Neck Press for upper chest development:

"CHEST TRAINING THE BOTTOM LINE   by Reg Park                                Musclemag 1994

"Believe it or not, when I started training in England in 1945, I did not know what a bench press was. My first chest exercises with weights were the straight-arm barbell pullover while lying on the floor and the lying-on-back-on-floor press.

"Upon my return in 1948 from serving two years in the British army in Singapore, I was surprised to find american bodybuilding magazines on sale in the UK and even more surprised to learn of the bench press. The appealing features about the bench press were that it certainly afforded the pectoral muscles more response than did the press on back, and also it allowed the bodybuilder to handle respectably heavy poundages. Like all youngsters of that period (1948), I made the barbell press a major factor in my training. Apart from the pectoral development I experienced from performing  the bench press - since I had relatively short arms - I was soon (1949) bench pressing 300 pounds. Unlike most bodybuilders of that period I was in essence more of a strength trainer than a pure bodybuilder, and by March 1953 I bench pressed 500 pounds during an exhibition in Bristol. This was the equivalent to the four-minute mile, the first of which was achieved by Roger Bannister in Cambridge also in 1953. Although many have since surpassed the 500-pound bench press and the four-minute mile, I consider Bannister and myself as being the trail blazers.

"In 1950 I visited America and trained with the greats of that period. I was intoduced to the incline dumbell press by Clarence Ross in the gym he then owned in Alameda, California. Incidentally, in those days Clancy was working up to reps with 165-pound dumbells. I returned to England and started training with a vengeance on the incline dumbell press. By 1952 I was doing five sets of five reps on both incline and flat bench with 185-pound dumbells. Looking back, I 'm sorry I did not see how many reps I could have done with 200-pound dumbells, but the truth is the disc-loading barbell rods that I used did not permit me to use more than 185 pounds.

"By now (the early '50s) bodybuilders were talking about using the flat bench press with either dumbells or barbells to develop the middle of the pectorals and the incline banch press, again with either dumbell or barbells, for the upper pectorals. In due course the decline bench for pectoral work was introduced and this supposedly was for the lower pectorals.

"Through the years I performed mainly flat and incline presses with dumbells and barbells with occasional dumbell flyes thrown in, believing that these variable would exercise the total chest area.

"Being the late developer that I am, I only began quite recently (the last couple of years) to question the validity of different inclines being for different areas of the pectorals. As in the case of the previously recommended principles of calf development, it was just not so. Over the last couple of years I have experimented with various angles and exercises for chest development and I have come to the conclusion that it is not the angle of the bench that determines what part of the pectorals is developed but more importantly the position of the elbows. Let me now expound on this.

"To exercise the upper pectorals it is  not necessary to perform incline barbell or dumbell presses or even inclline dumbell flyes. You can work the upper pectorals on any level provided the elbows are in line with the clavicles in the bottom position. On any level decline, flat, or incline, when performing the barbell press, simply lower the bar to the neck, keeping the elbows in line with the shoulders, and pause in the bottom position before pressing the bar back to arms' length.  With dumbell presses perform the exercise in the same manner bearing in mind that by using the dumbells you are able to get a greater down ward range. Similarly with dumbell flyes -  the elbows position determines the area of pectorals worked. Performing dumbell flyes with palms facing towards the feet rather than facing upwards makes the exercise even more effective.
How then do you activate the middle or lower part of the pectorals? Simple -  Just lower the bar or dumbells lower down the chest. For a variation try using upright cable flyes with the hands touching and crossing over at crotch level. The cable are the most effective equipment for the development on the inner pectorals when the muscles are attached to the sternum, particularly when the corossover with the cable handles is applied. When using the crossover action with the cables, be sure to apply tension on the inner pectorals in the form of an isometric contraction held for a second or two.

"The other inner pectoral movement that is beneficial is the close-grip (six inches apart) bench press with elbows wide, which takes the stress off the triceps. Once again the area of the inner pectoral worked is determined by the position of the bar lowered. If the elbows are held high on the neck, the upper inner pectorals are worked. As the bar is lowered down the chest, the lower inner pectorals are activated, but at the same time the triceps take more of the stress.

"If you doubt that these principles will work, all you have to do is try them and you will be convinced."

From: http://regpark.net/index.php?option=com_wrapper&am p;Itemid=38
Reg Park Forum




 
ccrow
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06-26-07 12:57 PM - Post#316063    



There is really no way to isolate the inner pecs.

The neck press definitely can shift the emphasis to the upper pecs, as Reg says. It is probably one of the worst things you can do for your rotator cuff.
The most important test a lifter has to pass
is the test of time.
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IB138
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06-26-07 02:13 PM - Post#316084    



  • ccrow Said:
It is probably one of the worst things you can do for your rotator cuff.




I wouldn't do it. Why not just do db inclines for the upper pecs?
Peace ~ Bear


 
Jack C
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06-26-07 02:36 PM - Post#316103    



  • Barney Said:
  • ccrow Said:
It is probably one of the worst things you can do for your rotator cuff.




I wouldn't do it. Why not just do db inclines for the upper pecs?



I agree. Years ago I did the neck presses but went back to the DB inclines.

I think the real problem is the elbows out to the sides, which you could have in the inclines as well, if you're doing them that way.

The DBs are nice because you can angle the elbows out at 90º or further in at 45º, or at whatever angle works for your rotators.


 
Stan Jaffin
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06-26-07 03:02 PM - Post#316112    



I did them for about a month. I could see a pec difference, and unfortunately feel a shoulder difference.
 
Wicked Willie
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06-26-07 03:13 PM - Post#316117    



Since my shoulders are already compromised...Vince's neck press and vee bar pec dips are verboten. If my shoulders were healthy and I had someone to critique my form...I might engage in them.

As it is, I've found that using another trick of Vince's is nearly as effective for me. By varying the plane of movement and where the bar or dumbbells finish, I can direct emphasis to a particular area of the chest...in much the same way as Reg Park did in the flat bench.

If I allow the bar to travel past the plane of my shoulders and over my forehead...I find that my upper pectoral aspect is activated. Of course, this doesn't require heavy weights but it does require a fair amount of concentration.

Wicked
"I'm in good shape for the shape I'm in."

"Jesus said to him, I am the way, the truth, and the life:
no man comes to the Father, but by me." John 14:6


 
CB
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06-27-07 05:55 PM - Post#316679    



We're all a little different and I've been doing Neck Presses for 3 years now with out injury nor discomfort. Knock on wood I've never had a shoulder problem of any kind. I've ginked myself with the bench press though in the past. I think the difference is I've never gone gonzo with the neck press like I did with the bench press.
CB
 
ccrow
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06-28-07 08:01 AM - Post#316959    



An exercise doesn't have to hurt 100% of the people that use it to be a bad idea. Neck presses are just like cigarettes.

There are people who will say "I've been smoking for 20 years and I don't have lung cancer." That is great and I sincerely hope they never get it, but it is a lousy logic to say that means cigarettes are fine.

Likewise, just because some people have no problems with neck presses to date, doesn't mean they're not a problem. Of course, nobody dies from a torn rotator cuff so it's not that big a deal!

But still, it is no day at the beach. Far more lifters get rotator cuff problems than smokers get lung cancer - it's not some remote possibility.

Based on even a basic understanding of the mechanics of the shoulder - something that is pretty common knowledge today, but NOT the case in Vince G's day - in most people, the extreme internal rotation is going to cause impingement and saw away at that rotator cuff.

Also like the cigarettes, you might get some early warning signs that something's amiss, and it might just blow out one day.
The most important test a lifter has to pass
is the test of time.
-Jon Cole


 
Greg B
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06-28-07 08:46 AM - Post#316976    



For me atleast, barbell bench presses are much worse for my shoulders than the neck press. I severely strained my left rotator cuff around 6 years ago, and haven't been able to do heavy bench presses since. Even 225 on the bar for reps makes my shoulder scream. I've been using neck presses for about a year now, no shoulder problems at all. To say that the neck press will definitely lead to rotator problems would definitely be incorrect...from my experience.

Greg


 
ccrow
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06-28-07 09:20 AM - Post#316987    



If you are responding to my post, you are missing the point by 180 degrees.
The most important test a lifter has to pass
is the test of time.
-Jon Cole


 
Manor
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Total Posts: 6773
06-28-07 10:46 AM - Post#317037    



Neck press for me causes some discomfort and with light weight discomfort is a signal for me to stop. I get results with incline BB bench without engaging the triceps to finish the rep, it looks like I'm doing 3/4 reps some would say partials however I'm there to engage the pecs not for a bench meet. I do finish the set with a complete rep and re-rack the bar.
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Greg B
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06-28-07 01:00 PM - Post#317132    



  • ccrow Said:
If you are responding to my post, you are missing the point by 180 degrees.


No, I'm pretty sure I was able to grasp the point of your post. I'll say again, I believe anyone who says that the neck press is without a doubt hard on the rotator cuff is incorrect. If that were true, wouldn't I be having problems now? As I stated before, I have rotator cuff problems. If I were to try to do the flat bench press right now, I'd have pain in my shoulder. It is simply an exercise that due to injury, no longer agrees with me. I do neck presses twice a week and have no pain. How do you explain that if neck presses definitely cause rotator cuff issues? I already have a problem, yet the neck press doesn't make it worse. Potentially detrimental exercises can differ from person to person. For instance, there are people that are physically just not suited to squat. They have knee and lower back issues if they do. Does that mean everyone shouldn't squat? Of course not. I understand in your post you comparing using the neck press to cigarette smoking. A person who smokes may go years without having any problems. Just as a person who does the neck press may do it for years without shoulder issues, then one day...they do. But being I have a rotator cuff injury now but can do the neck press...to me, kind of invalidates what you're saying. It's just not going to happen to everyone. But that's not to say it couldn't either. Depends on the person.

Greg


 
cajinjohn
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Gironda Bench Press to Neck
06-28-07 01:32 PM - Post#317164    



In my opinion the only correct and safe way to do a neck press is on a Smith (OMG did he say that) I did a demo of this move at one of Amazon's bashs. Hand position is the key.
It don't matter


 
Greg B
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06-28-07 01:34 PM - Post#317167    



Yup, I do 'em on the Smith too cajin.

Greg


 
ccrow
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Gironda Bench Press to Neck
06-28-07 02:03 PM - Post#317195    



  • Quote:
I do neck presses twice a week and have no pain. How do you explain that if neck presses definitely cause rotator cuff issues?



One more time, I said the opposite of that, it doesn't always cause issues; it's still a high risk exercise due to the way the shoulder is made.

There are four muslces in the rotator cuff. They can be injured in a number of ways. The issues you have may not be the same one the neck press irritates in some / most people.

A very few people are not built to squat and it is pretty easy to identify most of them. It is usually due to a correctable problem, like tight hamstrings.

Many or most shoulders are made so they can't neck press without impingement. Sometimes you can tell immediately, but sometimes you can't. It is a correctable problem too, the fix is to lower the bar to a different spot
The most important test a lifter has to pass
is the test of time.
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IB138
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06-28-07 02:15 PM - Post#317208    



  • vabodybuilder Said:
  • ccrow Said:
If you are responding to my post, you are missing the point by 180 degrees.


No, I'm pretty sure I was able to grasp the point of your post. I'll say again, I believe anyone who says that the neck press is without a doubt hard on the rotator cuff is incorrect. If that were true, wouldn't I be having problems now?



I've also known many 90 year olds that still smoke with little or no health problems caused by it. Does that mean that smoking is not a health risk? The neck press is probably a risky move for over 90% of the people that try it. I think that that was Byron's point.
Peace ~ Bear


 
Jack C
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06-28-07 02:15 PM - Post#317209    



I think that you guys have reached common ground.


 
Greg B
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Re: Gironda Bench Press to Neck
06-28-07 03:27 PM - Post#317287    



  • ccrow Said:
  • Quote:
I do neck presses twice a week and have no pain. How do you explain that if neck presses definitely cause rotator cuff issues?



One more time, I said the opposite of that, it doesn't always cause issues; it's still a high risk exercise due to the way the shoulder is made.

There are four muslces in the rotator cuff. They can be injured in a number of ways. The issues you have may not be the same one the neck press irritates in some / most people.






Ok. The point I was trying to make was that due to me already having rotator cuff problems, the neck press SHOULD aggravate it. I'm no expert on kinesiology, so I wasn't aware that it could be a different part of the rotator cuff that was injured, thus that being the reason I can't do bench press but can do neck press. I wasn't trying to cause a problem, just making a point. I understand what you're saying.

Greg


 
CB
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Re: Gironda Bench Press to Neck
06-28-07 04:07 PM - Post#317311    



  • cajinjohn Said:
In my opinion the only correct and safe way to do a neck press is on a Smith (OMG did he say that) I did a demo of this move at one of Amazon's bashs. Hand position is the key.


Yep I use a Smith or Ironmaster. I think Vince recommended some type of pressing machine for them to eliminate any balance issues and to maintain proper form. I've never had problems with PBNs or BNPDs either and many say they cause problems too. There are exercises that give me trouble so I don't do'em. I never tell others not to try'em but caution that they be careful with them. I don't think very many have tried neck presses because most don't know what they are. Some try'em and don't like'em not because they are painful but because they can't use much weight with them so they go back to Bench Presses so they can lift the heavier iron which is OK too if that's your main goal.
I think some of us may just have to agree to disagree about Neck Presses and hopefully agreeably.
CB
 
bulch
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06-28-07 05:19 PM - Post#317343    



What is a BNPD?
Best thread ever! :)


 
IB138
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Gironda Bench Press to Neck
06-28-07 05:30 PM - Post#317348    



  • bulch Said:
What is a BNPD?



Behind Neck Pulldown.
Peace ~ Bear




Edited by Barney on 06-28-07 05:31 PM. Reason for edit: No reason given.
 
bulch
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06-28-07 05:33 PM - Post#317353    



Cheers Barney.
Best thread ever! :)


 
ccrow
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06-29-07 02:39 AM - Post#317548    



Greg, I didn't think you were causing a problem at all, just disagreeing. If everyone always agreed on everything discussions would be pretty dull.

Incidentally long ago I did neck presses for a while because I didn't have an incline. After benching I'd lighten up and do a couple sets of neck presses. Never had any shoulder problems back then, but I was a kid with bulletproof joints and not much strength to put them to the test, so it doesn't mean much.
The most important test a lifter has to pass
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Marooned Mike
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Re: Gironda Bench Press to Neck
07-03-07 01:24 PM - Post#319378    



Larry Scott who learned quite a lot from VG wrote the same info as Reg Park -- elbows at shoulder-level while bench-pressing from the neck (rather than the low or mid-chest areas) to get good upper-chest development... I tried it... it definitely hits the upper-chest muscles.
2009 Motto: Thinking Positive, Being Positive
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Jack C
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Re: Gironda Bench Press to Neck
07-27-07 02:06 PM - Post#329289    









Klein's neck press?

   Attachment



 
Steve C
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Re: Gironda Bench Press to Neck
07-27-07 03:35 PM - Post#329344    



  • Marooned Mike Said:
Larry Scott who learned quite a lot from VG wrote the same info as Reg Park -- elbows at shoulder-level while bench-pressing from the neck (rather than the low or mid-chest areas) to get good upper-chest development... I tried it... it definitely hits the upper-chest muscles.



Yes, Larry Scott advised using a Smith Machine for this. He also advised having the hands angled on the bar (hence the use of a Smith Machine), in order to keep the elbows BACK and not brought in to the sides.
"It is not an uncommon experience for people to talk and argue a great deal about something without anybody bothering to define precisely what it is."
- Ross J.S. Hoffman

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We must begin by a definition, although definition involves a mental effort and therefore repels.
- Hilaire Belloc




Edited by Steve C on 07-27-07 03:36 PM. Reason for edit: No reason given.
 
IB138
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Re: Gironda Bench Press to Neck
07-27-07 03:48 PM - Post#329348    



  • Steve C Said:
  • Marooned Mike Said:
Larry Scott who learned quite a lot from VG wrote the same info as Reg Park -- elbows at shoulder-level while bench-pressing from the neck (rather than the low or mid-chest areas) to get good upper-chest development... I tried it... it definitely hits the upper-chest muscles.



Yes, Larry Scott advised using a Smith Machine for this. He also advised having the hands angled on the bar (hence the use of a Smith Machine), in order to keep the elbows BACK and not brought in to the sides.




Wouldn't that make it more like a tricep extension? Maybe I'm not picturing it right in my head.
Peace ~ Bear


 
cajinjohn
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07-27-07 06:06 PM - Post#329412    



Bar riding across index finger across palm exiting over outside heal of hand. This pulls elbows out toward ears. A little wider grip then med. lower toward collar bone ( upper chest). This is not a tri press. Light weights, and keep bar under control at all times.
It don't matter


 
Kevin C
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07-27-07 06:34 PM - Post#329425    



Hi Cajin,

I remember an article from one of the MuscleMag Annuals where three different famous bodybuilders were interviewed by Robert Kennedy with the same questions. It was Larry Scott, Boyer Coe, and I wish I remembered the other name. Anyway, one of the questions was "what's the most you ever benched?" Larry Scott was easily the lowest; he said 300."

Years later, it dawned on me that the 300 lbs Larry was talking about was what he used doing Neck Presses! Anyone who does one session of neck presses correctly, knows that you cannot perform with the usual bench press weight. Ever since that revelation, I realized that Larry Scott was STRONG!!!


 
Kevin C
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Re: Gironda Bench Press to Neck
07-27-07 06:36 PM - Post#329426    



Jack, your usual attachments are priceless! Thank you,

Kevin


 
cajinjohn
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07-27-07 08:16 PM - Post#329452    



Yes he was strong. I saw him use 150 lbs SS with 75 lb DB on the preacher. Me and Vince used to bet when he would bust a bicep tendon. That by the way was done with his hands wide and his elbows touching.
It don't matter


 
Wicked Willie
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07-27-07 09:45 PM - Post#329471    



  • cajinjohn Said:
Bar riding across index finger across palm exiting over outside heal of hand. This pulls elbows out toward ears. A little wider grip then med. lower toward collar bone ( upper chest). This is not a tri press. Light weights, and keep bar under control at all times.



Scott would often use the Smith machine to do neck presses. Cajin's description above is correct...and Scott would occasionally use a 2x4 that had been grooved to fit the bar so that he could do neck presses without gripping the bar. He would place his hands so that the board ran across his palms diagonally, as described above. This way, he didn't have to worry about his forearms, or balancing the bar or the strain on his wrists when doing the neck press.

Wicked
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"Jesus said to him, I am the way, the truth, and the life:
no man comes to the Father, but by me." John 14:6


 
Kevin C
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07-28-07 12:18 AM - Post#329504    



Willie and Cajin,

I wish I knew your real names; I have a feeling you two are famous Both of you lived what I only dreamed of; to work out at Vince's Gym with the champions and the master!

Anyway, the 2x4 neck press reminded me of the exact same type of bench one can do, but instead one uses a vertical leg press machine. I think it comes from Bill Pearl's Key To The Inner Universe (going strictly by memory)


 
Wicked Willie
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07-28-07 03:30 PM - Post#329667    



Famous? I'll leave that to Cajin. My real name (don't tell anyone!) is Bill Peel. Grew up in Michigan and spent 32 years there. Cajin was the one that worked out at Vince's...I just have a semi-photographic memory and recall for various readings and events. Even my memory is aging a bit...HA!

I did work around Tom Platz, Don Ross and a few others occasionally. I was a tall, skinny, obnoxious kid that was very forgettable...at least, people tried to forget me. Now, I'm a tall, no so skinny, obnoxious adult. Life doesn't change much, does it?

Wicked
"I'm in good shape for the shape I'm in."

"Jesus said to him, I am the way, the truth, and the life:
no man comes to the Father, but by me." John 14:6


 
Gazz
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08-12-07 02:05 PM - Post#336289    



I can do standard Bench press but find that after a couple of weeks I get severe pain in both shoulder joints. I've simply stopped doing them completely over the last few years.

I tend to concentrate on combinations of Dips, Smith wide grip neck press and Smith Incline press, and have few if any shoulder problems (probably because you simply cannot handle the same amounts of weight when training "Gironda style"). Probably my favourite (and hardest) is compounding Gironda Dips with Smith Wide Grip Neck press 4x8 each.

Gazz
Man who chases two chickens catches neither


 
cajinjohn
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08-13-07 08:48 AM - Post#336518    



if this combo works for you then great. It is the best.
It don't matter


 
cajinjohn
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08-13-07 08:50 AM - Post#336520    



I'm as famous as yesterdays empty beer can.
It don't matter


 
Steve C
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Gironda Bench Press to Neck
08-13-07 09:35 AM - Post#336536    



  • Wicked Willie Said:
Famous? I'll leave that to Cajin. My real name (don't tell anyone!) is Bill Peel.



You are Bill Pearl, Wicked? Just kidding...bet you have never heard THAT one before
"It is not an uncommon experience for people to talk and argue a great deal about something without anybody bothering to define precisely what it is."
- Ross J.S. Hoffman

I would like to see the truth clearly before it is too late.
- Sartre

We must begin by a definition, although definition involves a mental effort and therefore repels.
- Hilaire Belloc




Edited by Steve C on 08-13-07 09:35 AM. Reason for edit: No reason given.
 
Wicked Willie
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08-13-07 12:52 PM - Post#336638    



You're right...that is probably the first and last time my name will be mistaken for Bill Pearl.

I'm still excited over finally meeting the man. What a class act.

Wicked
"I'm in good shape for the shape I'm in."

"Jesus said to him, I am the way, the truth, and the life:
no man comes to the Father, but by me." John 14:6


 
Longhorn1rob
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09-16-07 11:16 AM - Post#350065    



I've done neck presses for lengths of about 3 weeks just to chance things up. I think this likely healthy for people who don't already have shoulder issues. Strangely, I tend to be able to use more weight when doing the neck press than when performing your normal bar to mid-lower pec bench press.
Have Bucket. Will Travel... R.I.P. Kris.


"If you train hard, you'll not only be hard, you'll be hard to beat."


 
garyed
*
Total Posts: 10226
11-02-07 03:22 PM - Post#369122    



Shoulder problems have a lot to do with the basic bone structure of your shoulder joint. Some are very prone to impingements and others are not.. Probably most fall somewhere in between.. If you were a swimmer or a baseball player (pitcher for sure) and or quarterback..then you might have really screwed up your shoulder(s) from those sports.. bench pressing..if done judiciously and with balance should not be a problem unless you have the problematic structure and or an injury from your previous sports life IMO...
Besides..if you rip it.. Docs can fix it..
 
cajinjohn
*
Total Posts: 12495
11-02-07 03:44 PM - Post#369145    



Light weights is the secret to neck press. We are not going for power here folks, but for pump. Forget the ego.
It don't matter


 
CB
*
Total Posts: 5666
11-14-07 06:55 PM - Post#373638    



They've worked well for me. The only thing that has bothered my shoulders, make that my right shoulder, is a tetanus shot I got last August. Only in the last week has the stifness and soreness gone away and feeling back to normal.
CB
 
cajinjohn
*
Total Posts: 12495
11-14-07 08:54 PM - Post#373686    



Something wrong with that shot CB. Shouldn't have done that.
It don't matter


 
hammer5fl
*
Total Posts: 3
12-02-07 04:10 AM - Post#379639    



Bench press to the neck(incline or flat) does wonders for the upper chest. Just use slightly wider grip, good form, good reps(8-12), and use common sense with the amount of weight. In his DVD, Serge Nubret says he rarely used over 300 lbs. and look at his results...

Peace To All...
 
Bill Keyes
*
Total Posts: 2558
Real Email Address: bilkyes@yahoo.com
Primary Training Purpose: Health
Primary Training Style: Volume
Still Tryin'
Gender: male
Signature: Bill2
Integrity is what you do when you think nobody is watching.

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Login Name: bilkyes
12-02-07 04:30 AM - Post#379641    



  • cajinjohn Said:
...Forget the ego.



The hardest single thing to do in the weight room, yet the most important.
Bill2
Integrity is what you do when you think nobody is watching.


 
Isamu
*
Total Posts: 106
12-02-07 08:13 AM - Post#379656    



how many angles should you bench from? I usually alternate dips and inclines, although I've been getting into flat benching again.
 
sam tsang
*
Total Posts: 2411
12-02-07 09:26 AM - Post#379670    



I think benching on incline is safer.


Sam Tsang
 
woods_man8
*
Total Posts: 386
12-03-07 12:13 AM - Post#379814    



  • sam tsang Said:
I think benching on incline is safer.


Sam Tsang



I agree but I see way to many guys benching from to much of an incline working the shoulders more then their pecs
 
sam tsang
*
Total Posts: 2411
12-03-07 01:13 AM - Post#379816    



Thus,we need a nice adjustable bench, no?

Sam Tsang
 
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