Arching in the bench press is a technique that has become more popular among powerlifters and strength athletes in recent years, and for good reason. Arching allows for a more stable and stronger base during the bench press, leading to increased power output and greater potential for strength gains. By creating an arch in the lower back and driving the chest upward towards the bar, the lifter is able to shorten the range of motion and utilize more of their chest and triceps muscles. This allows for more weight to be lifted as the lifter is able to push through heavier loads with greater ease.
Additionally, arching in the bench press can help to reduce the risk of injury by minimizing the stress on the shoulders and rotator cuff. When done correctly, arching can promote proper shoulder positioning and alignment, reducing the risk of impingement and other shoulder injuries. In fact, many physical therapists and coaches recommend arching as a way to prevent and even rehab shoulder injuries. Overall, while arching in the bench press may take some practice and getting used to, the benefits of increased stability, greater strength gains, and reduced risk of injury make it a valuable technique to incorporate into one's training.