Bench presses are just as stressful for the pecs as for the triceps
During a bench press session, the triceps have to endure as much as the pecs, and after an intensive bench press session, triceps and pectorals therefore need about the same amount of recovery time. Brazilian researchers at the University of Brasilia write this in Muscle Nerve.
The Brazilians asked 18 experienced male strength athletes to bench press six sets to failure. The men used a load of 85 percent of the weight with which just 1 rep was possible. The men rested for 2 minutes between sets.
During the first days after the bench pressure session, the subjects suffered more from muscle pain in their pecs than in their triceps, the figure below shows. However, it took about the same time for the pain in both muscles until to completely disappear.
Several times after the training session, the researchers also measured the torque [say: the force] of the triceps and pecs of the test subjects, and saw that both muscles need approximately the same amount of recovery time after the bench pressure session.
"Considering the small and nonsignificant difference between tibialis brachii and pectoralis major muscle recovery, the present results suggest that the bench press exercise may promote a similar stress on tibialis brachii and pectoralis major muscles", the researchers summarize.
"This suggests that adding single joint exercises to a multi joint exercise program would not be necessary for most people involved with resistance training. Nevertheless, the use of single joint exercises may be beneficial for specific aims, such as bodybuilding."
"In addition, it might be necessary to consider the stress on arm muscles during upper body multi joint exercises when designing resistance training programs, especially when computing the number of sets performed by each muscle group to avoid excessive stress on arm muscles."
Muscle Nerve. 2017 Nov;56(5):963-7.
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