French Press – How to perform the exercise

French press is an exercise that works on the triceps and the forearms. It is used for gaining muscle mass and developing the strength. Can be performed with dumbbells or EZ curl bar.

These days almost everybody is trying to get their body is shape. However, you should know that you should exercise not only the biceps but the triceps as well for it is 2/3 of the size of your muscles. So if you perform many biceps exercises, consider doing the French press as well for it focuses on the triceps. French press can be done in standing position, while seating on a bench or while lying on a flat bench.

How to perform it

Fist load up your barbell with an appropriate amount of weight. Then place it on the floor right ahead of you.
Bend your knees while keeping the rest of your body straight and grip the barbell (using overhand grip aka down facing palms). Place your hands at a distance of 8-12 inches apart from each other.

Then stand up holding the bar. Your feet should be placed at a shoulder width. Your knees should be slightly bend.
Lift the weight above your head. Then slightly bend your elbows to put the tension onto the triceps. That is the starting position.

While keeping your elbows pointing straight up and fixed start lowering the bar slowly behind your head. Do this as far as possible without creating discomfort. Make a short pause and start raising the weight to starting position.

Repeat but remember not to lock out your elbows.

Mistakes to avoid

One common mistake during this exercise is to let your elbows flare out. This is putting more stress on them and increases the risk of injury while decreasing the effectivity of the French press.
Also, do not lock them out while at the top point of the movement.
Another mistake is to load too much weight on the barbell. Remember to use only as much weight as comfortable.

In addition, do not lower the bar too low behind your head. Just reach an as lower height as comfortable.

Yet one other mistake is to go too fast. The repetitions should be performed slowly and steadily not in a haste.

More advices

It is important to follow the proper technique. Your elbows should not flare out. The movements should be done steadily and slowly. When you reach the top point you shouldn’t lock out your elbows for this removes the pressure off the triceps. Try to only move your forearms while keeping the rest of your body straight. While performing the exercise your head should be up with your eyes facing forward.

Remember that your back should be in a straight position during the exercise.
Exhale while you are lifting the bar above your head and inhale while you are lowering the bar down. During the lifting part of the exercise you should not lift your elbows forward.

Moreover we have a video for you to see how French press is performed:

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