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Wide Grip Vs Narrow Grip Bench Press – Which Is the Best for You?

Pick the right variation for you.

Wide Grip vs Narrow Grip Bench Press, which is the right variation for you?

Your grip width during the bench press will affect what muscles are worked. Additionally, your skill level, anatomy and goals should all be considered when choosing a bench-pressing setup.

There are a lot of ways to bench but how you perform the exercise during training should ultimately – as long as you’re using proper form – come down to your goals.

Source: Alora Griffiths on Unsplash

Wide grip bench press

A wide grip bench press happens when your grip on the barbell is substantially outside of your shoulders. In other words, is substantially wider than your shoulder width.

Close grip bench press

A close grip bench press doesn’t have to have your hands meeting in the middle of the barbell. Instead, find the right width by basing the measurement of where your hands should be off your shoulders.

Wide Grip Vs Narrow Grip Bench Press

The main differences between the Wide Grip Vs Narrow Grip Bench Press are the following two areas: movement pattern and muscles worked.

Wide grip bench pressClose grip bench press
Larger arch during the lift“Standard” setup
Shorter range of motionLarger range of motion
Feet should come as close to underneath the bar as possibleHeels placed right under your knees
Advantageous for smaller and flexible liftersAdvantageous for people with wider ribcages
Requires a spotterWorks the triceps and anterior delts more
Works the rear delts more 

The wider the grip, the more emphasis on your pecs, and the closer the grip, the more emphasis is put on your triceps.

Read more: Barbell Bench Press vs Dumbbell Bench Press

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