Buffalo Duffalo Bar Bench Press: How To, Benefits,…

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You can do the fundamental bench press exercise with many equipment options. Find out what buffalo and Duffalo bar bench press can do for you.

The Duffalo bar is one brand of buffalo aka bow bar. I will use both of these names but their effects should be similar.

That aside, bench pressing with a buffalo bar allows your muscles to go through a slightly bigger range of motion compared to a barbell. This is generally beneficial for muscle growth and strength progress.

Additionally, the bow in the bar makes scapular retraction (keeping your shoulder blades close to each other) easier which can lower your injury risk.

Some people also simply like the feel of the Duffalo bar on their wrists.

The main downsides of the buffalo bar bench press are that it requires an extra investment and that not everyone likes the feel of this alternative version.

How to do a buffalo/Duffalo bar bench press

The gear requirements for doing a buffalo/Duffalo bar bench press are very similar to the regular one. As you can expect, the difference is that you need a good buffalo/Duffalo bar instead of a barbell.

Take the following steps to do a buffalo bar bench press:

  1. Load the racked buffalo bar with the desired weight.
  2. Lie down with your back on the weight bench with your shoulder blades retracted. Place your hands with an overhanded grip on the buffalo bar at about shoulder width or somewhat wider.
  3. Unrack the buffalo bar and keep your arms slightly less than stretched and pointing up.
  4. Slowly lower the buffalo bar as far as comfortable toward your chest. Your upper arms should be at angles of about 45 degrees or less to your sides.
  5. Push the buffalo bar back up until your arms are slightly less than stretched.

Doing bench presses with a buffalo bar basically comes down to the same movement as the regular version.

Due to the bow in the bar, you may want to keep your movements just a bit slower and more controlled to avoid swinging the weights too much.

Because of this difference, it can be smart to take a step back and use lighter weights first. This helps you get used to the somewhat different movement.

Next, when using a Duffalo bar you don’t necessarily need the bar to touch your chest at the bottom of the movement. Go as far as comfortable/you can use the right technique.

Buffalo bar bench press muscles worked

Buffalo bar and Duffalo bar bench presses will still mainly work your chest, tricep, and front deltoid (shoulder) muscles even though you are using a different bar.

Especially in bars with a bigger bow and a bit more swinging, you will also engage stabilizing muscles like the scapular muscles, middle deltoids, latissimus dorsi, biceps, and a variety of forearm muscles just a bit more.

One of the main benefits of buffalo and Duffalo bars in the bench press is the bigger range of motion you can go through because of the bow in the bar.

This is generally beneficial for muscle growth and strength progress.

Besides that, you still want to combine buffalo bar bench presses with enough weight, repetitions, and sets for training the fitness components you have in mind.

Over time, this could mean adding a few weight plates to make the exercise challenging enough again for your stronger muscles.

Buffalo bar bench press benefits

There are many benefits of doing a compound chest exercise like the bench press successfully. Even so, the list below will focus on the specific benefits of using a buffalo bar in this exercise.

  1. More muscle growth: Buffalo bars can increase your range of motion under tension. This typically helps you see more training results faster.
  2. Can reduce injury risk: The angle of the buffalo bar promotes scapular retraction. This can reduce your injury risk in the bench press exercise. Additionally, strengthening shoulder stabilization muscles has a similar effect.
  3. Keeps things interesting: After doing the regular bench press so many times you may feel the need to switch things up. One way to do this is using different pieces of fitness equipment like buffalo bars.
  4. May feel more comfortable: Some people will find the Duffalo bar more comfortable on their wrists than a regular barbell.

While buffalo bars are great for bench presses, you don’t have to limit yourself to this movement.

Another good exercise example for these specialty barbells is the buffalo bar squat.

It could also still be a good idea to implement bench presses with a barbell. For example, someone who will do a competition with a barbell bench press may want to train in this movement specifically.

Potential risks

They could make certain areas more comfortable but buffalo Duffalo bar bench presses can still be challenging for areas like your shoulders, wrists, and elbows.

If you have (a history of) issues in one of these areas, you likely want to start with light weights. You may even want to start with other strengthening exercises first.

Even after implementing Duffalo bar bench presses in your workout routine, you want to keep an eye out for signs of overtraining.

Is the buffalo Duffalo bar bench press a good exercise?

Buffalo and Duffalo bars are great pieces of fitness equipment for doing the bench press exercise.

The bow in the bar can help you increase your range of motion while still offering the stability of a sturdy bar and can help put your shoulders in a safer position.

It can also just be enjoyable to switch between different pieces of fitness equipment. In turn, this could help you stay consistent with your workout routine.

One potential downside is that buffalo and Duffalo bars can be pricey. Additionally, not everyone likes the different feel of the angles bar.

That being said, if you have the budget and like it somewhat, adding a Duffalo bar bench press to your routine can be worth it.


What does a buffalo bar do for the bench press?

Using a buffalo bar in the bench press allows your muscles to go through a larger range of motion, makes it slightly it easier to do a scapular retraction, and potentially makes the exercise more comfortable on your wrists.

Is buffalo bar bench press harder?

Even if you consider the heavier weight of the bar, a buffalo bar bench press is slightly harder due to the bigger range of motion your muscles have to go through.

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Matt Claes founded Weight Loss Made Practical to help people get in shape and stay there after losing 37 pounds and learning the best of the best about weight loss, health, and longevity for over 4 years. Over these years he has become an expert in nutrition, exercise, and other physical health aspects.