Broad, strong shoulders are an important part of the body that you should aspire to. They’ll look good and they’ll make you feel good too, giving you the strength and power to push on and handle a high octane workout.
It’s clear that, in order to achieve these strong shoulders, you’re going to have to put in some hard work at the gym. What you need are some effective, deltoid exercises. Some easy-to-learn, hard-to-master routines that are targeted to getting the most out of the muscles that give your shoulders the power that you need.
6 exercises to slip into your routine
1. Dumbbell press
The most common – and the best of the lot – is the dumbbell press. If you’re only going to do one deltoid exercise, this is it! Pick up a pair of dumbbells and bring them to shoulder height, raise them to the side and then press them over your head. You can do this from a seated position or stand up for a tougher test.
2. Dumbbell shrugs
This is so simple but also really effective. Stand up straight with your shoulders back, grab a pair of dumbbells by your side, tighten your core and shrug up into your neck. Hold that shrug for a second then lower down again. Repeat until you feel the burn.
3. Lateral raises
Again, this is simple to perform and guaranteed to get results. Stand up tall with two dumbbells. Raise both of your arms out straight until they reach shoulder height and you’re forming a ‘T’ shape. Hold the weights at the top of the pose for a second before you slowly lower them down and repeat.
4. Reverse flies
Pick up two dumbbells and then bend over to a 45-degree pose, keeping your back straight and abs nice and tight. Squeeze your shoulder muscles together and lift your arms out to the side, in line with your chest. Hold the pose at full extension for a second or two before slowly returning to your starting position. Repeat 10 times for a strong workout of the rear delts.
5. Kettlebell swing
We’ve written before about the virtues of the kettlebell – and it can be a great way to build up shoulder strength. Squat down slightly with a kettlebell on the ground. Hold it with your right hand, dip down further and then swing the bell out in front up to your eye level. You should pull your shoulder forward and lift your legs up in one smooth, sweeping movement. Swing the bell back down, switch hands and repeat 10-15 times with each hand and you’ll feel the benefit in your entire shoulder.
6. Upright rows
Grab a barbell, with your hands roughly 6 inches apart. Slowly pull the bar up to chest height. Your elbows should be pointing upwards so that they are higher than your hands. Hold the bar for a second at chest height and then lower back down again.
Have a go at each of these, building up the number of reps and the weight of your dumbbells and barbells as you get stronger. Let us know how you get on. Or perhaps you’ve got an exercise that you swear by? We always love to hear your suggestions…