Once the bar is motionless on your chest and your receive the “PRESS” command your next movement has to be up. Many lifters will sink the bar deep into their chest before pressing. That is fine, but make sure that you sink it before the press command. If you get “PRESS” then sink and press you will be red lighted. It is super important that if you have this habit that you practice your press timing on the bench.
There are a few more key differences between hitting legit benches in a meet vs being in the gym.
EVEN LOCKOUT and BAR PATH
Having both arms lockout at the same time is important. If you have a discrepancy in your arms and you let one side fall behind it is crucial to have the bar lockout at the top evenly. The bar can’t look like a seesaw going up. Another important factor is the bar cannot move back down at all once the press command is given, the bar path has to continue up. If you are fighting a max weight and the bar starts to come back down, even for a split second you will get a red light. The bar can stop if you are grinding, and it can be super slow, but it just can’t start moving back down. If that happens the ref will yell out “TAKE IT” and the spotters will grab the bar and rack it.
HEAD and FEET
In USPA your head can come off the bench during the bench press. In a few other federations the head cannot come off the bench. In USPA you can be on your toes, but your feet cannot move all over the place during the lift. Other federations require heels to be planted on the ground so it is important to know the rules of the fed you are competing in. Again it is important to know the rules and most importantly practice your training utilizing the rules.
Here is a link to the USPA rule book. If you have any questions regarding competing in the sport of powerlifting please feel free to reach out to us. We will be hosting a free powerlifting workshop on January 16th to discuss the rules, meet prep, and what to expect on meet day. Join our newsletter below and add us on social media to get alerted when we RSVP!
REGISTER FOR OUR FREE POWERLIFTING WORKSHOP
JANUARY 16th, 10am-12pm
We will be offering it in person at our gym as well as online via ZOOM.