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Military Press versus Bench Press?

Discussion in 'Weight Training/Bulking' started by Azure, Feb 8, 2008.

  1. Azure

    Azure Active Member

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    Which is more effective?

    I do both, but because they're incredibly taxing I cannot both in one session. So I alternate between the 2.

    Day 1-3 will be Bench Press, Day 2 will be Military Press. Next week....Day 1-3 are Military Press, Day 2 is Bench Press.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. chicanerous

    chicanerous Elite Member
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    Which is more effective... for what?
     
  3. Azure

    Azure Active Member

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    Strength gain. Putting on the muscle.

    Considering I can lift over 200 lbs more with the Bench Press, I would assume that more weight = better results.

    But I would very much like to improve my military press.
     
  4. docutech

    docutech Active Member

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    I perform the bench press and military press within the same workout. I alternate the two exercises vice versa. I may start with the bench press one day and another day I will start with the military press. I found that dialing in the weight to accomodate both exercises in one session works pretty well. If I was to max out my weight for each exercise, there is no way I could perform them both during my chest workout.

    I hope this helps...:gl:
     
  5. Azure

    Azure Active Member

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    I certainly don't max out....but I do preform until failure on the 3rd set with either exercise.

    On top of everything else I do....I find it almost impossible to combine to two into the same session.

    Perhaps I should cut back on the weight?
     
  6. cnjlakes

    cnjlakes Active Member

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    Doesn't military press focus on the shoulders more where the bench press is primarily a chest exercise?
     
  7. Illuminate

    Illuminate Active Member

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    Military utilizes more muscles overall than the bench, so I'd say the military. Standing version of course.
     
  8. chicanerous

    chicanerous Elite Member
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    Strength gain... in what movement? Putting on the muscle... where?

    ;) :lol:

    Your military press strength should be lower than your bench press. There isn't as much muscle involved. The bench press has primarily your chest, shoulders, and arms, while the military press just has shoulders and arms. The amount of muscle dynamically involved has a large impact on the potential strength of a movement.

    As for adding mass, the military press places greater emphasis on the muscles of the shoulders, while the bench press also distributes it to the chest. However, the bench press allows more overall weight to be used, so the question is whether that weight is great enough to provide a stimulus that outdoes the use of a smaller weight but more direct stimulus provided by a military press. That's a pretty hard question to answer and depends heavily on your own body.

    Obviously, you can't develop a big chest by just military pressing. So, if you want chest development, you better be bench pressing. So, the real question is whether shoulder development is best created through bench pressing or military pressing. In my experience, overhead work has done quite well in developing my shoulders, but I also have little interest in bench pressing. The plus side of this approach, however, is that, once I developed strong shoulders relative to the chest, they tended to take over when I bench press, so the bench press was absolutely an effective shoulder builder in that specific case -- though I still can't say whether it was more effective than continuing to overhead press. On the other hand, if you're emphasizing your bench press, I think it's really up in the air whether it will be an effective shoulder builder for you (depending on technique and your specific anatomy); but, then again, by definition, if you're emphasizing the bench press, you're more concerned with it and the benefits it provides you, so you may not care about its effectiveness as a shoulder builder in the first place.

    The bench press uses more muscle dynamically than military press, which is what ultimately matters when your determining the impact of a dynamic movement.
     
    #8 chicanerous, Feb 8, 2008
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2008
  9. phitness

    phitness Well-Known Member

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    I prefer splitting chest and shoulders, this way you can be sure to give you all on bench press (and its angular variations) and military/shoulder press.

    Here are two seven day splits that separate chest and shoulders:

    7 Day Option 1
    Legs
    Chest + Biceps
    Rest or Cardio Only
    Shoulders + Triceps
    Back
    Rest or Cardio Only
    Rest or Cardio Only

    7 Day Option 2
    Quads + Hams
    Chest + Triceps
    Rest or Cardio Only
    Shoulders + Calves
    Back + Biceps
    Rest or Cardio Only
    Rest or Cardio Only
     
  10. phitness

    phitness Well-Known Member

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    You'll need both...

    ...plus squats, plus deads, plus chin-ups/pull-ups, plus rows, plus dips, plus food, plus rest, plus water. :tu:
     
  11. Azure

    Azure Active Member

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    I do all those too.

    Good info guys.
     
  12. JoeSchmo

    JoeSchmo Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, these really aren't exercises that substitute for one another .... so, comparing them is kinda like comparing apples and oranges.

    Plus, aren't you chasing a 350 pound bench press? If so, excising bench presses from your routine probably won't help.
     
  13. Azure

    Azure Active Member

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    Yes I still am.

    Still making gains too....although I haven't been over 300 lbs. Haven't tried either.
     
  14. cnjlakes

    cnjlakes Active Member

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    When do you take flat and incline bench press into account? do you spead them out over days or concentrate them on chest days?
     

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