I enjoy rotating my exercise selection regularly – it keeps things moving, the body adapting and prevents workouts from getting boring. Today I was reminded (reading John’s blog) of an exercise that I had first seen over a year ago, considered interesting and promptly forgotten.
Welcome the Cuban Press. As with the Zottman Curl, the Cuban press is limited (in terms of the weight you can hoist) by one small part of the lift – the rotation.
According to a number of sites around the web, as well as photos in trashy fitness magazines, a lot of people seem to think the rotation part makes up the entire exercise. Unfortunately (or fortunately, for anyone with a slightly masochistic nature) that’s only one part of three.
To perform the Cuban Press, start with the bar on the ground in front of you (as if you’re about to deadlift it) and pick it up with a double-overhand grip – the same width as you bench.
Lift it like a very wide-grip upright row, until your upper arms are horizontal. Rotating about the elbows, flip the bar around so it is now about level with the top of your head.
The extra components (to the rotations often performed) may seem superfluous, but the combined effect is great. Light weight, warm shoulders.
Cuban press 3×12@20/45
NB : I ended up doing these seated, in order to avoid putting any more holes in the ceiling 🙂