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3 Reasons Why Push-Ups Are Better Than Bench Press For Chest Strength and Muscle Building

There are a few notes to make in favour of the push-up compared to the bench press.

You read that correctly. Here are 3 reasons why push-ups are better than bench press for chest strength and muscle building.

The arguments are coming from Alec Enkiri, a strength, conditioning and performance coach. He is also an Olympic weightlifter with a dedicated YouTube channel.

3 Reasons Why Push-Ups Are Better Than Bench Press For Chest Strength and Muscle Building

According to Enkiri, his chest grew exponentially since he began doing push-ups again. Mind you that he claims to be able to bench press 315 pounds regularly.

1. Massive Core Activation

It is true that push-ups activate the core more than bench presses. That is because you need to keep a plank position and maintain that neutral spine curvature throughout the push-ups while on the bench press you are laying on your back.

“If you are doing weighted push-ups, then this effect becomes much, much more pronounced as any external weight that you add on to your back is directly working against your core,” Enkiri says.

Best Benefits of the Crunch ExerciseSource: John Fornander / Unsplash

Enkiri’s argument is that it doesn’t matter if you can bench press 400 pounds if your core, abs, lats, and everything in your torso cannot resist that force. That is what makes the push-up a more functional exercise than the bench press.

2. Shoulder Blades Can Move Freely

Bench presses have your shoulder blades pinned down against the bench, whereas on push-ups your shoulder blades are free to move. “This allows the scapula to retract and protract.”

A few benefits of this are allowing the serratus anterior to be targeted, it is a more natural way of utilising the shoulders and pressing.

Reasons Why Push-Ups Are Better Than Bench Press For Chest Strength and Muscle Building

3. Great Stimulus to Fatigue Ratio

Lastly, on the reasons why push-ups are better than bench press for chest strength and muscle building is exactly what sets them apart and that make many people choose the bench press: it is low volume.

Push-ups don’t tax your body as bench press does. Because of that, push-ups can be done for high volume or frequencies which allow for high-quality and easily recoverable work to be performed. For this reason, push-ups can be done as a finisher exercise to increase even further your chest gains.

And those are Alec Enkiri’s 3 reasons why push-ups are better than bench press for chest strength and muscle building. If you want to know more about his arguments, click on the video below.

VIDEO – 3 Reasons Why Push-Ups Are Better Than Bench Press For Chest Strength and Muscle Building

Check out more content from BOXROX:

100 Push-Ups a Day for 30 Days – What Happens to Your Body?

How to Build a Bigger Chest at Home in 30 Days

Push-Up 101: The Best Guide

How to Increase Chest Size and strength

The Perfect Chest Workout (Sets and Reps Included)

The Best Way to train the Chest for Hypertrophy (Muscle Mass)

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