A barbell bench press is one of the most classic compound exercises becuase it works three of the most important muscle groups in your upper body: the chest, shoulders, and triceps.

But as simple as the move appears, it's actually somewhat difficult to perfect—and very easy to get wrong, which can lead to muscle strain and serious injury. To avoid hurting yourself, check out this video, which details the proper way to lift that barbell and stack on serious upper-body muscle. 

Here are a few important things to keep in mind when bench pressing:

 - Grip the bar slightly wider than shoulder-width

 - Retract shoulders

- Keep elbows tucked at 45 degrees 

- Plant your heels

- Maintain slight lower-back arch