Dips instead of bench press? Dips instead of bench press?

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Thread: Dips instead of bench press?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2018
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    Default Dips instead of bench press?

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    It seems dips work the same muscle as the bench press. I really like bodyweight exercises but I don't like the bench press that much. Would it work to exchange the bench press for weigthed dips once you are strong enough to do them? I am talking Starting strength.
    If you skip bench press for weighted dips will your bench press still improve even if you don't train it?
    I like to have pushing strength though and dips work in a downwars direction instead of forward.

  2. #2
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    I think there are a few reasons not to do this:

    - Not as easy to incrementally load dips, once you get strong enough. Practically speaking, how much weight are you going to want to deal with hanging between your legs?
    - Anecdotally, people seem to have more issues with injuries from dips than bench.
    - Bench will improve to a point from dips for a novice, but not much in the long run.
    - Most people will be able to move more weight on the bench. If you care about strength, and strength is the production of force against an external resistance, then bench is probably better.
    - You say you like bodyweight exercises. But, the dips will not be a bodyweight exercise for long...? Not sure what to make of this.

    Basically, I don't see any good reason to make this substitution. But if you like dips more than bench, and want to do them, don't let me or anyone else stop you.

  3. #3
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    Oct 2017
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    I hate benching but I get it done anyway since I still havent benched 2 plates yet.
    As for dips, I love them. Been doing them for years. Havent had any issues adding weight but I usually keep it around 10-15 rep range after doing heavy bench. If you can do heavy ass dips then do them.
    Also look into Bill Starrs Stronger Press pdf. Its got a great progression system on dips. Cheers :3

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by jonfla View Post
    Practically speaking, how much weight are you going to want to deal with hanging between your legs
    More weight than hovering above my head, that's for sure.

  5. #5
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    Weighted dips were by far my favorite movement (along with weighted chins) for many years. Shoulder mobility issues have, unfortunately, made that a thing of the past.

    Can and do still bench, but I miss the dip.

  6. #6
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    Simply "not liking" a lift doesn't give you permission to exclude it. Are you training or are you exercising?
    Have you ever seen anyone who can perform dips with more weight than they can bench? I haven't. Dips are great for improving upper body strength, but cannot replace the bench press or press when it comes to developing strength in the most optimal manner.
    Do your benching and then do dips to your hearts content. AFTER YOU BENCH.
    Scott Acosta, SSC, Westside Barbell Coach, USAPL Coach, Nice Guy
    essentialbarbell@yahoo.com
    For the love of God, just do the fucking program

  7. #7
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    Lately I've found that progressing my weighted dip on the gymnastic rings helps increase all the other pressing movements. I've made trials with many other movements and this one albeit silly is the one exercise that stuck. I think the reason is that it works the shoulders better than regular dips and the chest better than vertical presses. Funny enough last year I put 25kg on my incline 5RM while my press and my bench progressed only like 5kg.

  8. #8
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    Jun 2017
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    I'd stick with bench press over dips. I'd gotten up to 85# weighted dips when I started have pain in my back and shoulders. With bench press I've been able to go up much more in weight without as much pressure on my joints.

  9. #9
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    May 2018
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    I think people can dip MUCH more weight than they can bench press.

    You have to include bodyweight with the additional weight hanging from a belt. What percent of your body weight to include i do not know. Like maybe everything but the arms?

    An example if i am understanding this properly: I weigh 197 lbs. i can do 5 sets of 12 body weight dips. I cannot do 3 sets of 5 benchpress @ 195lbs. I always thought it was understood that you could decline benchpress more than a flat benchpress. The dip is even more declined than decline bench.

  10. #10
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    May 2018
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    starting strength nutrition camp
    To add to what i said above, if dips could be done regularly without injury for most people, then I would say that they would be worthy of being a “main” lift, and not an assistance lift. Unfortunately most people cannot do these without pain. Its awfully tough to do these more than once a week for body weight let alone 1.5 times a week with added weight.

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