Basic Shoulder Workout

Basic Shoulder Workout

a) Front Barbell Raise

This is an isolation exercise for the front of the deltoid and the upper chest.

To begin, stand straight with a barbell in your hands. You should grip the bar with palms facing down and a closer than shoulder width grip apart from each other.

Your feet should be shoulder width apart from each other. Your elbows should be slightly bent. This is the starting position.

Lift the barbell up until eye level while exhaling. Make sure to keep your elbows slightly bent when performing each repetition.

Once you feel the contraction, begin to lower the barbell back down to the starting position as you inhale.

NB: Don’t cheat by moving your torso back and forth!  To avoid this you can do the exercise with your back against the wall.

Barbell raise

b) Lateral Raise

This is an exercise especially for the lateral part of the shoulder.

Grab a dumbbell in each hand using a neutral grip (thumbs facing forward).  Place your hands near the outsides of your thighs.

Lift your arms as straight as you possibly can while keeping them in line with your body.  Bending he arms makes the exercise easier, but it will not improve the size of your shoulders.  At all times during the exercise, the thumbs should be lower than the pinkie fingers so that you really focus your efforts on the lateral part of the deltoids.

NB: To defy gravity, there is a strong tendency to cheat in this exercise, which is counterproductive.  Since this is an isolation exercise, you will not be able to use very heavy weights.

lateral raise

c) Bent-over Lateral Raise

This exercise works your rear delts as well as your back.

Leaning forward, your torso should be near a 90° angle to the floor.  Grab the dumbbells using a pronated grip (thumbs toward one another).

Lift your arms to the sides as high as possible while keeping them very straight.  Hold the contracted position for one to two seconds before lowering the weights.

bent over lateral raise