It is interesting that you don't have your feet flat on the ground-I don't either but all the "top benchers" keep telling me I need to have my feet flat on the floor for leg drive-apparently not since you are a top bencher and you are up on your toes too-your thoughts?
Good question. I have done both since I have competed in and continue to compete in various organizations some which require the feet to remain flat on the ground (USAPL) and others that do not. With that being said, I feel that benching on the balls of the feet is an art form (very technical) and isn't for everyone. One factor that will determine if it is suitable for a particular individual would be flexibility and mobility the thoracic and lumbar spine which ultimately determines one arch. This may also determine groove or bar path. Another variable that must be considered is flexibility/mobility in the ankle joint (ability to dorsiflex). You mentioned being up on the "toes" where in actuality you would never want to be on your toes since the "leg drive" will be originating from the balls of your feet which will be pushing back on a 45 degree angle to your traps. If pushing off the toes the force (leg drive) generated would be going straight up in the air which would contribute very little to the press. I will admit, I have found to have slightly better leg drive with my feet flat on the ground when wearing olympic weightlifting shoes pushing back with my heels. However that little bit of extra leg drive I get is at the expense of losing a bit of my arch which I have found to have negative impact on my groove. Think decline bench pressing vs. flat. Bench pressing on a decline is "easier". To a certain degree this is what us big archers are trying to accomplish (turning the movement into a decline). Another thing to keep in mind regarding leg drive, is to realize there is a big difference in leg drive occurring isometrically which stabilizes your body throughout the entire movement opposed to a sudden jolt in the lower body prior to the ascend which doesn't do much of anything aside from making your bench a heave.