8 Amazing Shoulder Exercises

Working the shoulders helps with developing that perfect frame. Especially if you hit all three areas of the shoulder (front, middle, rear), it will dramatically improve your overall strength as well as your size.

But as you lift, you want to make sure you maintain proper form and not overdo it on weights. Nothing stinks more than suffering from a shoulder injury. So build strength to avoid injury, but also use proper technique to avoid problems in the process.

Note that heavy weights are not necessary for these exercises. You’d be surprised how challenging these exercises can be with weights that are lighter than you would think you need.

Here are 8 shoulder exercises you can do with just basic gym equipment to get a great workout…

Seated Push Press With Dumbbells

Here’s how to do it:

  • While seated, hold two dumbbells just above your shoulders, palms facing each other, with a slight bend at the legs.
  • Push the dumbbells straight up into the air until your arms are fully extended. Lower the dumbbells back down to the starting position slowly.
  • Pause for a moment, breathe and push the dumbbells straight into the air again while breathing out.

Bent Over Dumbbell Flys (or bent over rear deltoid raises)

Here’s how to do it:

  • Lower your body at the hips with a slight bend to the knee, keeping your back parallel to the floor.
  • With your arms holding the dumbells near your shins, and still in a bent over position, raise your arms straight out so your arms are parallel to the floor.
  • Imagine your back as a hinge and use a full range of motion to try to pinch your back together.

Side Lateral Raises

Here’s how to do it:

  • Stand tall with a slight bend the knees, holding the dumbbells to your side.
  • Raise your arms to the side so that both arms are as parallel to the ground as possible.
  • Using a slow motion, return to the starting position.

Barbell Shrugs

Here’s how to do it:

  • Stand tall and holding a barbell with both hands, palms facing towards your legs.
  • Raise the barbell up by lifting your shoulders, keeping the distance of the barbell to your body the same (the bar should be almost resting against your legs). Remember to lift with your shoulders and not with your arms.
  • Slowly return to the starting position and repeat.

Seated Dumbbell Push Press on Bench (no back)

Here’s how to do it:

  • Just like the seated push press, do the same exercise… only this time without any back to rest against.
  • This will engage your core and require greater strength and balance.

Reverse Grip Rear Shrugs

Here’s how to do it:

  • This exercise is done just like the barbell shrugs described earlier, with a slight twist.
  • Use the same grip to hold the barbell behind your back, palms facing backwards.
  • If you have access to a Smith Machine, that may be the best way to approach this exercise for safety and convenience.

Dumbbell Front Raises

Here’s how to do it:

  • Just like lateral raises, you’ll stand tall holding a dumbbell in each hand. Only this time you’ll be holding the dumbbells in front of your body and not to your side.
  • Lift the dumbbells straight in the air in front of you until your arms are almost parallel to the ground.
  • Slowly return to the starting position and repeat. Try not to bend too much at the elbow. If you have too much bend, lower the weight.

Barbell Upright Row

Here’s how to do it:

  • Hold a barbell in front of you just like the barbell shrugs.
  • This time you’re going to lift with your shoulders and arms, bringing the barbell up to your chin with a full bend at the elbows.
  • Straight up and then down, return the barbell to the starting position and repeat.

These are great shoulder exercises that’ll help develop healthy shoulder strength and muscle definition. Be sure to check out our back exercises to fully develop that V-Shape body and develop even greater strength.

One Response

  1. Julian Bargas June 30, 2017