Exercise of the Week: 1 Arm Dumbbell Bench Press

Single arm exercises are incredibly valuable as an athlete for a number of reasons. Basically, when you’re wrestling, you are doing different things with each arm and hand and training them individually helps with that carry over. On top of that, pressing with one arm is a serious ab workout! (If you don’t believe me, you will the first time you try it!) Having a heavy ass dumbbell in one hand makes you have to tighten your whole body up so that you don’t barrel role off the bench to that side!

1 Arm DB Press tips

  1. Start light! This will feel really different from benching with a barbell or 2 dumbbells so start easier than you think you’d need to.
  2. Get a nice arch in your lower back and think about sticking your shoulder blades in your back pockets as you lie back onto the bench and keep them that way throughout the whole movement.
  3. Dig your feet hard into the floor and drive your knees out to help you stay stable and tight.
  4. Don’t let your upper arm flare way out to 90 degrees to your body. That’ll make it tough to get a full range of motion and will wreck your shoulder eventually. Keep it 45 degrees or so to your body.
  5. Make sure you keep your hand, wrist and elbow lined up the whole time so you put every ounce of force you can into the weight.
  6. Breath deep into your belly, then squeeze your abs and glutes to stay tight.
  7. Keep the reps in the 5-8 range for 3-5 sets.

Pressing heavy with one arm is not only incredibly beneficial to wrestling, but it’s fun and it makes you look like a total badass in the gym! Make sure to balance it out with a pulling exercise in your program as well, so you keep your shoulders healthy and your body strong.

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