Monday, February 5, 2024

What Is 80lb Seated Bench Press Equivalent To On Regular Bench Press?

What Is 80lb Seated Bench Press Equivalent To On Regular Bench Press?

Directly comparing an 80lb seated bench press to a regular bench press isn't as straightforward as it might seem. This article will explore the reasons for this viewpoint.

Different Biomechanics:

  • Seated Bench Press: This exercise isolates the upper chest and shoulders due to the back support, minimizing leg drive and core engagement compared to a regular bench press.
  • Regular Bench Press: This compound exercise involves multiple muscle groups, including chest, shoulders, triceps, core, and legs, for stabilization and power transfer. This makes it inherently more challenging.

Impact of Technique and Body Composition:

  • Individual Technique: Variations in form, grip width, and bar path can significantly impact the difficulty and weight lifted in both exercises.
  • Body Composition: Factors like muscle mass, limb length, and leverage points influence how much weight someone can press effectively.

Considering these factors, an 80lb seated bench press might translate to:

  • A lower weight on a regular bench press: For someone with good technique and average body composition, it might translate to 60-70% of their regular bench press weight, roughly 48-56lbs.
  • A similar weight on a decline bench press: The decline angle partially offsets the lack of leg drive, potentially making an 80lb seated press comparable to an 80lb decline press for some individuals.

Expert Opinion:

Strength Coach, Mike Matthews: "Instead of focusing on direct comparisons, prioritize proper form and progressive overload on both exercises for optimal strength gains. Consider factors like training experience, goals, and individual strengths when comparing performance."

Research and Findings:

While no single study directly compares seated and regular bench press equivalents, research highlights the importance of:

  • Individualized Training: Focusing on exercises and weights that match your form, goals, and body composition is crucial for optimal results.
  • Compound Movements: Regular bench press, being a compound exercise, offers greater overall strength development compared to the more isolated seated press.


Aim for proper form, progressive overload, and a training program tailored to your goals and abilities. This approach is preferable to fixating on direct weight comparisons between different exercises.

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