A weight bench is not just a bench; it is a piece of gym equipment that helps build muscles in your body. Moreover, doing weight bench exercises boost your stamina and strength.
It is quite a versatile tool, and you can do several exercises with them. You can perform workouts such as bench presses to develop your upper and lower body.
This article will cover how you can best use a weight bench. Keep reading to stay fit and get your dream body by using these eight best weight bench exercises if you’re interested.
8 Best Weight Bench Exercises
1. Dumbbell Bench Press
The unilateral motion of the dumbbell bench press helps you fix muscular imbalances and improve your posture. In addition, it helps tone the chest muscles, the triceps behind the upper arms, and the front and top of the shoulders.
How to do it:
Lay down on an incline bench (30-45° angle). Put your feet flat on the ground and your back on the bench. Lean back on the bench while holding a dumbbell in each hand at your side.
In the starting position, your palms should be facing in the direction of your feet. However, if you have shoulder problems, move to a relaxed posture, where your palms face each other.
Take a breath as you bring the bar down to your chest. Exhale as you raise your arms and press the bar towards your chest. Concentrate on the ceiling rather than the bar.
Next, slowly lower the bar till it is slightly over your chest. Keep the dumbbells apart. Don’t let them come in contact with each other.
2. Dumbbell Row
If you want to work on your upper body muscles, one exercise you can do is dumbbell rows. One workout that will always be in trend is the single-arm dumbbell row.
The dumbbell row mostly accentuates your back muscles. Still, it also gives your chest, glutes, core, lower back, and triceps a thorough upper-body exercise by working for many other muscle groups.
This workout is pretty easy to perform. All you have to do is crouch on a bench and row your arm to your side. All you need in this exercise is a bench, an adjustable bench, and a dumbbell.
In addition, it is a unilateral workout, meaning it only simultaneously works one side of your body.
How to do it:
Lie down on your chest with your whole body weight on an incline bench at 45 degrees.
Take a dumbbell in each hand, and squeeze your shoulder blades together as you row it up to your chest. At no time during the workout should your chest leave the bench.
It’s a good idea to lie on a workout bench like this to avoid arching your back while exercising.
3. Bulgarian Split Squat
The Bulgarian Split Squat works the leg muscles, including the quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, and calves. Hence, it is one of the best leg exercises.
Additionally, maintaining the correct form necessitates greater use of the upper and core bodies, which demands excellent balance and coordination.
The most important thing to remember when performing a Bulgarian split squat is that finding the proper foot placement to do the exercise properly requires trial and error.
How to do it:
Face away from your flat bench as you stand next to it. Your arms should be at your sides as you hold a dumbbell in each hand. In contrast, your raised foot should be toes-down on the bench behind you.
Bending your front leg and bringing your back knee down can help you steadily lower your torso. Your front knee shouldn’t extend past your toes. When your front thigh is perpendicular to the floor, stop.
At the bottom, tighten your quads, then raise your torso back up and stand in an upright position. With that leg raised, complete the reps, then move on to the other.
4. Lying Tricep Extensions, a.k.a. Skull Crusher
The skull crusher is another excellent exercise to do on a weight bench. It helps your triceps assist your pectorals and anterior deltoids in lifting the weight during the workout and controlling it during the lowering phase.
Moving the weight with control is the most crucial safety advice to remember when completing skull crushers, especially when descending. Most accidents happen when you move the weight too quickly, and the position is not controlled.
The skull crusher is an excellent exercise for your triceps training. Additionally, it can restore any tricep imbalance or heal an injury.
How to do it:
Maintain a solid shoulder joint, narrow elbows, and straight wrists as you move the weight.
Sit at the end of a flat bench with a pair of dumbbells in your hands. With your hands facing one another and a neutral grip, recline and lift the dumbbells over your head.
Lower the weights until they are roughly level with your ears while maintaining a straight upper arm position.
Lift the dumbbells back to their starting position while contracting your triceps.
5. Single Leg Squat
The squat is one of the most effective weight bench exercises today. The quads, hamstrings, and glutes are just a few of the key leg muscles that are stimulated.
The single-leg squat is a means to advance once you have mastered the split squat, the Bulgarian split squat, and squatting with both legs together (none of which is an easy achievement).
Moreover, the quadriceps and hamstrings are the muscles that are primarily targeted and strengthened by the single-leg bench squat.
Additionally, this workout enhances coordination, flexibility, equilibrium, and core strength.
How to do it:
Bend one leg straight in front of you as you stand in a single-leg stance on a bench, while the other bears the weight of your body while leaving the knee bent slightly.
Flex the knee of the supporting leg to begin your descent, then keep going until your foot contacts the ground.
Returning to the starting position, drive through the front foot while extending the knee.
Repeat as many times as necessary.
6. Tricep Dips
The triceps dips are an excellent bodyweight exercise for developing arm and shoulder strength. This exercise aims to strengthen the upper body and broaden the range of movement over the entire body.
The strength of the triceps, shoulders, and arms can all be increased with this specific exercise, which is very beneficial.
Moreover, there are numerous variants of this specific workout that you can do to suit your level of fitness in practically any place. So, do include it in your upper-body strength routine.
How to do it:
For your rear to clear the edge of the bench, elevate your body by pressing into your palms as you advance a little bit.
It is best if you stop until your elbows are between 45 and 90 degrees bent. Throughout the full range of motion, control your movement.
Repeat by slowly raising yourself back up and holding your arms straight.
7. Concentration Curls
One of the best bicep and weight bench exercises is the concentration curl. Your biceps experience more tension than they would during a typical bicep curl since your arm is anchored. Hence, the biceps muscle is strengthened, and biceps hypertrophy is increased.
Additionally, your bicep curls are made more efficient by locking your arm into place with your knees. You can exercise on a stable, flat surface on a weight bench.
How to do it:
Place your knees apart and sit on the edge of your flat bench. If there is a leg holder, take it off. Hold one arm’s back against the inner thigh of the corresponding leg as you bend forward between your knees.
Your arm should be straight while you hold the dumbbell with your palm facing outside.
Lift the dumbbell in a curl, so it is almost at your chest. At the top, tighten your biceps, then slowly descend the dumbbell.
After completing your reps with one arm, move on to the other.
8. Step Up
The weighted step-up is excellent for developing quadriceps strength (front of the thigh). Moreover, step-ups exert the least stress on the knee when done correctly and help protect it. Therefore, it is a fantastic lower-body workout, and dumbbells increase muscle pressure.
You can alter it to create a secure and efficient workout for persons of all fitness levels. You can incorporate it into almost any exercise program to increase upper leg and glute strength.
If jogging or walking on flat ground is the majority of your aerobic workout, your quads may need to be strengthened to maintain balance.
How to do it:
Straighten your right leg by pressing with your right foot’s heel as you rise. On top of the bench, bring your left foot to meet your right foot.
With your left foot, take a step back while bending your right knee. Bring the right foot to the same level as the left foot.
The weight bench exercises in this article demonstrate how you may use them for much more than just sitting or lying down.
They offer you a sturdy, trim base from which to train. Adapt the angle to your training method and objectives. Use it to direct your motions when you need to concentrate on control, especially while using dumbbells.
If you liked this article, you might want to check our other reviews at ExpertFitness.org.
Nathan Lloyd, MSc
LICENSED PERSONAL TRAINER
I’m a personal trainer, based in Boulder, Colorado.
I service clients physically in the Boulder area, mainly in the ONE Boulder Fitness Gym, but am also available for online consulting and coaching.
If you’re interested in my personal coaching programs, please contact me via the contact page.