‘m gonna be frank with you: There actually are not too many movements that I do not enjoy to do in the fitness center with any toy I ‘ve at my disposal (barbells, Valslides, kettlebells, dumbbells, you name it). It is generally reminiscent of an episode of Oprah’s favorite things around Movement Minneapolis: “YOU get a kettlebell swing!” “YOU get a barbell deadlift!” “YOU get a Valside hamstrings curl!”
But if I must narrow it down, if you are gonna make me, it is the more unusual raises (Jefferson deadlift, anyone?) that truly catch my heart. And that brings us to one of the very delightfully unusual upper body strength moves I Have ever encountered: the bent press.
Bent Over Backwards
The bent press goes back, way back, to old time strongman (and strongwomen) contests. It was viewed as ways to press — a little misnomer, which I’ll describe in a moment — a tremendous number of weight overhead, ideal for the strongpeople in traveling circus shows performing. A fairly rad connected narrative: A strongwoman named Kate Brumbach, otherwise called The Great Sandwina, used to bent press her 165-pound husband overhead.
The bent press lives on now as a well- upper-body to grow strength, core strength, and even leg strength enhance thoracic freedom. I say well-honored because it is aerodynamic lift that entails a reasonable level of ability: Practice makes perfect with the bent press. You dig?
Ok, so here’s the interesting part about the bent press: You do not really press the weight up, you get yourself down underneath it. It is a cousin of the windmill, a rotational motion, and you will find the weight does not move up substantially, if at all, when you are looking carefully.