The Infamous 225 Pound Bench Press Test.

Have you heard of it? 

Every year, 335 athletes are invited to the NFL combine where they take on a barrage of different strength, power, speed, and agility tests one of which includes the 225 max reps bench press test.

I personally think that the bench press test has nothing to do with proving how good of a football player you are, but its a pretty good test of strength based endurance and its cool to see how many reps you can bang out as well.

As for me, I attended a handful of NFL combines back after I had finished up playing college ball in hopes of getting asked to come tryout for a team.

Sadly, I never got invited, but I did post up some solid numbers…

  • 4.38 40
  • 3.79 Pro Agility
  • 10.2 Standing Broad Jump
  • 38 Inch Vertical
  • 19 reps on the Bench

I’d say the bench press test was my weakest link by far.

For the speed, agility, and power tests, those weren’t an issue at all (BTW, I’ve got a system for specifically for POWER athletes coming out real soon 😉 )

Anyways,  back to present day…

A few days ago I received a challenge by a fellow strength coach and friend of mine, Chandler Marchman. 

The guy is a BEAST of a man and also a great coach that knows his sh*t.

The challenge he sent me was to do as many reps on the bench press as I could do with it loaded up with your own bodyweight.

He’s actually got a nice little “Beat the Coach” Challenge going on and if you win, you get a bunch of free stuff plus some $$$.  For more info, Check it out HERE.

Of course I took on the challenge Chandler sent me, but went a little bit further with it… 

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I counted 16 reps clean (I say 15 in the video and Joe helped me on the last one).

To add to it, I then hammered out 25 strict pull ups.  I wanted 30 damn it.

Either way, not bad for not training much on the bench press.

I knew I would get at least 10 reps, but not 16 so I was happy with that.

Now the question is, What can YOU get?

For this weeks Thursday Throwdown, I challenge you to do this same challenge.

1A)  Max rep set of bench presses w/ at least your bodyweight loaded onto the bay

***30-60 secs break MAX

2A) Max reps of pull ups

Get after it and go H.A.M.

Oh and if you want to know a little trick that will help you out before the test, do this:

First, make sure to warm up with some extra heavy 1-2 rep sets that are significantly more then what you’ll be testing out at.

What this will do is fire up and recruit a ton of extra muscle fibers so the weight you end up testing out with will feel light.

What you trick your body into thinking it’s gong to be lifting a heavier weight…

Here’s the exact warm up I did before I tested:

135 x 5, 185 x 3 225 x 3, 245 x 2, 265 x 2, 285 x 1, 295 x 1.

When I pushed 225 for the first few reps, it felt like 135!

Now, don’t worry as these sets wont tire you out unless you’re extremely unconditioned or you try to go too heavy.

Get up to about your 85-90% 1 rep max and stop there.

Also, there’s hardly any volume involved at all with the warm up sets. All you’re trying to do is recruit more muscle fibers from the heavier loads.

I’ve used this trick for when I have high rep squatting sets or even dead lifting sets as well.

Works like a charm.

Now the key is to rest only for about 1-2 mins after your last warm up set then go directly into your max rep set.

You’ll gain anywhere from 2 maybe even 6 extra reps.

Use this trick and get after it!

Don’t forget to let me know how you do.

I EXPECT a TON of comments on this one as I know just about everyone likes to bench 😉

Live and Train Aggressive!

PS – For a full on Bench Press Domination Program, check out the Bench Press Max Reps 8 Week Program by Chandler Marchman and Mike Westerdahl.