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Questions and answers about sports

Can bench pressing an unevenly loaded bar lead to injury?

4 min read

Asked by: Nikki Knight

The consequence of bench pressing unevenly is that it will increase stress at the level of the shoulder. While this isn’t necessarily bad in the short term, repeated unwarranted stress on a single joint over time can lead to subtle pain, and under the worst case, a full-blown injury.

Can you injure yourself on bench press?

The dropping or crushing of weights on the chest can crack ribs and has even caused suffocation. Activities such as the benchpress cause small tears in MSK tissue that must be repaired and remodeled to build strength. Overuse injuries occur when the body has inadequate time to repair this damage.

Can you break your chest from bench press?

According to, you can crack the middle of your sternum or fracture its end, a small projection of bone called the xiphoid process, if you allow the bar to touch your chest too forcefully while you are bench pressing.

What injuries can you get from bench press?

The bench press can cause other injuries to the shoulder, with the most common being a rotator cuff tear, osteoarthritis and overuse or strains, according to the University of Rochester Medical Center. Additional injuries include bench press shoulder impingement and labrum tears.

Can you hurt your ribs from bench press?

At the bottom portion of the bench press, don’t bounce the bar on your body—this cheats the movement by creating momentum to make the barbell easier to lift. You can also hurt your rib cage if the weight is heavy enough. If you have to bounce the barbell, chances are it’s too heavy.

Can you pull a muscle bench pressing?

A pectoralis major strain typically occurs when the muscle is forcibly contracted whilst in a stretched position. This can occur during weight training when performing bench press exercises. When the bar is lowered, the pectoralis major muscle is stretched across the chest.

Can a bench press decapitate you?

Of all the main barbell lifts, the bench press is the most dangerous. In fact, it can kill you. If the bar slips from your hands during the lift, the loaded barbell can fall on your face, throat, or chest, ending your life relatively quickly.

What does bruised ribs feel like?

The bruised area is tender and sore. You may feel pain both when you move and while at rest. Breathing, coughing, laughing, or sneezing can all cause or increase pain.

How do you tell if you have a cracked rib or pulled muscle?

Check if you have a bruised or broken rib

Symptoms include: strong pain in your chest area, particularly when you breathe in. swelling or tenderness around the affected ribs. sometimes bruising on the skin.

How common are bench press injuries?

Steven Choate, MD, treated nine active duty soldiers and airmen for pectoralis tears during just four months at a hospital in a forward deployed location. The injury is relatively rare among civilians. In fact, a shoulder-and-elbow surgeon may see an average of less than one pectoralis tear a year.

How do you avoid injury when bench pressing?

Our focus is the chest we want our hands just outside shoulder width. When our chest to be out you can tighten up the core muscles keep yourself flat through here you'll back flat against the bench.

Should I touch my chest on bench press?

The bottom portion of the bench press is where your pecs are most heavily activated. If you don’t touch the bar to your chest, you’re cheating your pecs out of a lot of good work. Sure, it’s the most difficult portion of the lift.

How can bench injuries be prevented?

Five top tips to achieve good technique and avoid brench press injury

  1. Keep your shoulder blades retracted (braced) throughout.
  2. Avoid bench-pressing with your back flat, rather maintain an arch in your back by bracing your shoulder blades and elevating the chest.

Should you put clips on bench press?

Don’t Clip Your Bench Press

If your bar is clipped up you might become a pancake under that barbell, helpless and without an escape route. Now, if your bar DIDN’T have clips, you could slightly tilt your barbell to one side allowing the plates to fall to the floor thus releasing you from captivity.

What happens if you fail a bench without a spotter?

Press pins or handles where you're going to be bench pressing off of and then you adjust those.

Can I bench press without a spotter?

While you can bench press without a spotter, we wouldn’t recommend it — especially not for anything heavier than “warm-up” weight. It’s simply too dangerous. The safest way to bench press without a spotter is to utilize a lifting rack or stand that has adjustable safety pins, spotter arms or safety bars.