Different Core Image of the word, “Bench Press,” in Japanese and English

muscular sportsman training with heavy barbell during weightlifting workout in modern gym Uncategorized
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I have been working out for two years and now I am challenging to lift 100kg by the end of March, when Japanese school year ends.  Interestingly, it seems that the image of “bench press” is different in Japanese and in English. 

Bench press in English means “a bodybuilding and weightlifting exercise in which a lifter lies on a bench with the feet on the floor and raises a weight with both arms”, according to Oxford Language dictionary.  In Japanese, on the other hand, it often implies barbell press, one variety of bench press.

I took two photos to show what photo google image suggests with both bench press and ベンチプレス.


In English version, there are suggested keywords, like dumbbell and barbell.  It means bench press has variety of workout activities.  In Japanese, there is no such keywords.  Surprisingly, there are same number of “dumbbell press” photos though.  Also, famous peoples’ names are suggested in Japanese, though no person is suggested in English.

In short, the image of bench press is narrower in Japanese than in English.  We, Japanese people, should say barbell press instead of bench press from now on! Just kidding though.

Actually, these kinds of difference sometimes lead misunderstandings.  In Japan, smart often meant slim before smartphones got popular.  The core image of “chance” also slightly different.  I would love to share those interesting characters in English classes.

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