Shoulders

Shoulder Exercises for Men and Women

These shoulder workouts listed are for both men and women. Both of you can follow these workouts for building and toning your shoulders. The deltoids are the muscles covering the shoulders, giving their unique rounded shape.

Three muscle groups are in this area, the anterior deltoid, lateral deltoid, and posterior deltoid. The trapeziums are the muscles that come down from the neck to the shoulders in a V-shape. You can do shoulder exercises in various forms.

Variation does matter to the growth of your muscles. Update your workouts every two to four weeks for better results. You can do shoulder exercises with barbells, dumbbells, resistance bands, machines, and more.

Mentioned exercises is a list of all practical shoulder exercises that you can include in your workout schedule. You’re not supposed to do all of these on a single day. Also, always warm up the shoulders with lower weight for greater resistance to any potential injuries.

1. Barbell Shoulder Press

The barbell shoulder press is a popular exercise used to build shoulder strength and muscle. The barbell shoulder press is sometimes referred to as a military press. This exercise works the side and rear deltoids primarily and the trapeziums secondary.  

They can be performed sitting or standing with either a straight bar attached to guides in a Smith machine, or a free style bar like pictured below. When performing this exercise in the seated position, set up an upright bench (90-degree chair) for back support to reduce the chance of injury.

Many gyms and health clubs have a shoulder press rack with a built-in upright bench.

Instructions for Barbell Shoulder Press:

1.  Grasp the barbell with a wider-than-shoulder-width grip.

2.  Lift the bar to the starting position below the chin level.

3.  Press the bar up in a straight line over the head without locking out the elbows at the top.

4.  Lower the bar down to the upper chest in a slow controlled manner.

5.  This will complete your one repetition.

6.  Exhale as you press up. Inhale as you come down.

7.  Repeat it until failure (8-12 reps / 2-3 sets)

2. Seated Behind the Neck Shoulder Press

The seated behind the neck shoulder press is a variation of the shoulder press exercise used to build shoulder strength and muscle. This exercise works the side and rear deltoids primarily and the trapeziums secondary.

They can be done with either a straight bar attached to guides in a Smith machine, or with a free style bar like pictured below. Behind the neck press variations can put the shoulders in a compromised position, increasing the risk of injury.

If you do not have a fair amount of shoulder mobility, it is not recommended to perform this variation.

Instructions for Seated Behind the Neck Shoulder Press:

1.  First, set up an upright bench (90-degree chair) either inside or

    outside of the weight rack.

2.  Adjust the barbell above shoulder height then load the desired weight

     onto the bar.

3.  Sit down on the bench, grip the barbell using a medium wide grip, and

     untrack the bar resting it on the shoulders in back of the neck.

4.  The back should be upright resting against the back of the bench with

     shoulders back, chest out, and head forward.

5.  Brace the legs while pressing the barbell straight up overhead just

     before locking out the elbows.

6.  Lower the weights back to the starting position in a slow, controlled

     manner.

7.  This will complete your one repetition.

8.  Exhale as you press up. Inhale as you come down.

9.  Repeat it until failure (8-12 reps /2-3 sets).

3. Shoulder Press Machine

The shoulder press machine is a common machine in gyms and health clubs. There are many different variations by many different companies, yet they all basically do the same.

The shoulder press machine is a variation of the shoulder press exercise used to build shoulder strength and muscle. This exercise works the side and rear deltoids primarily and the trapeziums secondary.

Prior to use, adjust the seat and handles so that you are able to extend the arm at the top of the range of motion and can lower the handles down to the shoulders without the weight resting on the stack.

Instructions for Shoulder Press Machine:

1.  Select the appropriate weight on the weight stack.

2.  Sit in the machine with the feet flat on the floor. The back should be

     upright resting against the back of the bench with shoulders back,

     chest out, and head forward.

3.  Grasp the handles slightly wider than shoulder width.

4.  Brace the legs while pressing the barbell straight up overhead just

     before locking out the elbows.

5.  Lower the weights back to the starting position in a slow, controlled

     manner.

6.  This will complete your one repetition.

7.  Exhale as you press up. Inhale as you come down.

8.  Repeat it until failure (8-12 reps / 2-3 sets).

4. Dumbbell Shoulder Press

The dumbbell shoulder press is a variation of the shoulder press exercise used to build shoulder strength and muscle. You can perform this variant of the shoulder press seated (as shown below), standing, or with alternate presses.

This exercise works the side and rear deltoids primarily and the trapeziums secondary.  While the pressing motion is the same whether you’re seated or standing, there’s an important distinction between the two types of exercises.

When standing, you’re better able to generate a bit of thrust through your hips and knees. This kind of movement typically allows you to use more weight, or do more reps, than sitting allows. Seated presses are better for isolating the targeted muscles because it’s more difficult to generate momentum through the lower body. But you’ll sacrifice some weight, some reps, or both as a result.

When performing this exercise seated use an upright bench (90-degree chair) for back support to reduce the chance of injury.

Instructions for Seated Dumbbell Shoulder Press:

1.  Grab a pair of dumbbells and sit on an upright bench (90-degree chair)

     with the feet firmly planted on the floor.

2.  Hold a dumbbell in each hand above the shoulders, keep the elbows

     out and the palms facing forward. The forearms should be

     perpendicular to the floor.

3.  The back should be upright resting against the back of the bench with

     shoulders back, chest out, and head forward.

4.  Press the dumbbells straight up overhead just before locking out the

     elbows.

5.  Lower the weights back to the starting position in a slow, controlled

     manner.

6.  This will complete your one repetition.

7.  Exhale as you press up. Inhale as you come down.

8.  Repeat it until failure (8-12 reps / 2-3 sets).

5. Upright Row

The upright row can be performed using a straight bar, E-Z bar, dumbbells, pulley, band strap, etc.… A varied placement of the hands may be used performing this exercise. With a close grip like the picture below, this exercise works the trapeziums primarily and the side and rear deltoids secondary.

If you separate the hands further in a wider grip, you will shift even more of the work onto the deltoids. Be careful with how much weight you use for this exercise. Too much weight leads to bad form, which in turn will cause shoulder injury.

The cable upright row (upright pulley row) is identical to the barbell upright row and most of the same instructions apply.

Instructions for Upright Row:

1.  Grasp the bar with the hands a little less than shoulder-width apart.

2.  Stand with the back straight, don’t slouch, let the hands hang free

     while holding the weight.

3.  Raise the bar toward the chin with the elbows as high as possible.

4.  Keep the head up, the eyes looking forward, the elbows should rise

     and remain higher than the hands.

5.  Keep the bar close to the body throughout the movement.

6.  Hold for a moment, then lower the weight back to the starting position

     in a slow, controlled manner.

7.  This will complete your one repetition.

8.  Exhale as you raise the bar up. Inhale as you come down.

9.  Repeat it until failure (8-12 reps / 2-3 sets).

6. Lateral Raise

The lateral raise is an isolation exercise to work on the lateral deltoids primarily, the anterior and posterior deltoids are worked secondary. This exercise may be performed utilizing either a barbell, dumbbells, or a pulley row, while seated, standing, or on an incline bench (standing dumbbell shown below).

If you do the exercise either sitting down or on an incline, you will effectively eliminate any momentum provided by the legs and torso. Perform lateral raises while seated or inclined, using the same technique as standing, as well as one arm at a time.

Instructions for Standing Dumbbell Lateral Raise:

1.  Hold a dumbbell on each side of the body with the palms facing each

     other. Stand with the feet shoulder-width apart.

2.  Lean forward at the waist slightly, and bend the elbows a little.

3.  Lift the arms laterally until the dumbbells are slightly higher than your

     shoulders. At the top of the movement, the palms of the hands should

     face the floor and the elbows slightly bent.

4.  Hold for a second, then lower the dumbbells back to the starting

     position in a slow, controlled manner.

5.  This will complete your one repetition.

6.  Exhale as you raise the arms up. Inhale as bring the arms down.

7.  Repeat it until failure (8-12 reps / 2-3 sets).

7. Front Raise

The front raise is an isolation exercise to work on the posterior deltoids primarily, the lateral and anterior deltoids are worked secondary. This exercise may be performed standing, seated, or on an incline bench.

The front raise utilizes either a barbell, a pulley, or a pair of dumbbells (as shown below). You can lift both arms at once (simultaneously) or alternate left and right (alternating front raise). Lifting one at a time reduces the strain on the lower back.

You can rest your back against a wall to prevent rocking or other forms of cheating. You can also do this shoulder exercise in seated position.

Instructions for Standing Dumbbell Alternating Front Raise:

1.  Grab a pair of dumbbells and stand upright with the feet shoulder-

     width apart. Hold the weights in an overhand grip. Position dumbbells

     in front of the upper legs (thighs).

2.  Keeping the elbows slightly bent, the back straight, and the chest out,

     raise one dumbbell slowly to the front up to eye level.

3.  Hold for a second, then lower the dumbbell back to the starting

     position in a slow, controlled manner.

4.  Repeat the movement with the alternate arm.

5.  This will complete your one repetition.

6.  Exhale as you raise the arms up. Inhale as bring the arms down.

7.  Repeat it until failure (8-12 reps / 2-3 sets).

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Welcome to UFC

Ultra Fitness Club for everything you need to know about Bodybuilding, Workouts, Nutrition, Supplements, and Health & Fitness.