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Top 5 Muscle Building Shoulder Exercises

Top 5 Muscle Building Shoulder Exercises

– Welcome to the third part in our top muscle-building guides, this week we’re focusing on shoulders with five great exercises you should be doing.

Our previous two posts can be found here; Arms and Back.

Seated Barbell Shoulder Press

This is the major exercise you should be doing, just as deadlift is for back, squats are for legs and bench press is for the chest. You can do this standing but I personally prefer seated, doing it this way makes you focus on your core and prevents you from using the knees to help push the weight up, ensuring only the shoulders are doing the work.

Top 5 Muscle Building Shoulder Exercises My Gym Fitness Blog
Seated Barbell Shoulder Press (or Military Press)

So while standing, ideally grabbing the barbell from a rack, place the barbell so it is resting on the upper part of the chest with palms-facing-out-grip and sit on the bench keeping your core stable. Raise the barbell so the arms are extended but not locked, pause, then lower back down in a controlled motion and repeat.

Dumbbell Lateral Raises

This is a great isolation exercise that focuses on the side of the deltoid muscles as well as strengthening the entire shoulder.

Top 5 Muscle Building Shoulder Exercises Fitness Blog
Dumbbell Lateral Raises

Stand with your feet shoulder width apart with a dumbbell in each hand, palms facing inwards towards your legs. Now slowly raise your arms to the side, keeping them straight so that the weights are level with your shoulders. Pause, slowly lower and repeat.

 

Dumbbell Front Raises

This is another fantastic isolation exercise, this time focusing on the front of the deltoid – and again works the whole shoulder also.

Top 5 Muscle Building Shoulder Exercises My Gym Fitness Blog
Dumbbell Front Raises

Just as with the side raises, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart holding the dumbbells with palms facing towards you. Now raise one arm in front, keeping arm straight, until the weight reaches shoulder height. Pause, lower in a controlled movement and then repeat with the other arm. You can also do this with both arms at the same time as opposed to alternating.

 

Reverse Dumbbell Flyes

Working the entire shoulder section, this is another essential exercise.

Top 5 Muscle Building Shoulder Exercises My Gym Fitness Blog
Reverse Dumbell Flyes (or Lying Side Lateral Raises)

To start with, lie down on a bench (you can also use an incline bench) so that you chest and stomach are pressed against the bench with your head overlooking the edge of it. Hold the dumbbells in each hand and let them hang with a small bend in your arm.

While maintaining the slight bend raise both arms to the side with the weights until they are parallel to the floor, squeezing your shoulder blades together as your reach the top point. Pause, lower and repeat.

Your legs and the rest of the body should remain stationary while you do this exercise.

Dumbbell Upright Row

This is a good compound shoulder exercise that also works the traps and lats. You can also do this one arm at a time, which puts more emphasis on the shoulder.

Top 5 Muscle Building Shoulder Exercises My Gym Fitness Blog
The Dumbbell Upright Row

Stand with your feet shoulder width apart, dumbbells in your hands with palms facing inwards towards your legs. In one clean controlled movement raise the weights so that they are level with your top part of your chest / collarbone with palms facing downward. Pause, lower and repeat.

Next week we’ll be focusing on the chest.

 

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