Hip thrusts can be awkward to set up. Most lifters get a flat bench and prop it against a wall or stick weight plates behind it to keep it from moving. This can work, but when it doesn't it's usually because of one of these reasons:
- The lifter is too short for the bench, so sitting on the floor puts the bench edge high up on his shoulders. That means he has to squirm and writhe to get into position before the first rep, and then do the same to take a seat on the ground after his final rep.
- The lifter slides on the bench and doesn't have a consistent point of contact to use as an axis while thrusting. This gets worse if his back is sweaty.
- The bench itself slides or tips, usually away from the lifter as he progresses through his sets.
- The lifter struggles to get the right elbow and arm position to hold the bar comfortably.
The Solution: Use a Decline Bench
Making the shift from a flat bench to decline bench solves all of these problems.
Since the bench is heaviest towards the high end of the decline, it's much harder to make it shift by pushing against the low end. That's simple physics. But banking the heavy end against a wall makes it foolproof.
Plus, since you're now using a bench lengthwise and not widthwise, your elbows are free to tuck towards your body and hold the bar in the position that works best for you.
Lastly, since the south side of the decline bench typically terminates quite close to the floor, a lifter of any height can comfortably use one.