Shoulder Exercises

by tinareale on November 22, 2011

I think sculpted shoulders go a long way in giving anyone a more defined, toned look to the upper body. Shoulders are one of my favorite body parts to train. The few key movements have seemingly endless variations. Plus, I find results in that area come relatively quickly and you can really push them hard.

Allow me to share some variations of my favorite shoulder exercises.

Barbell Front Raise With Rear Delt Pull


Start by gripping a barbell with hands just outside thighs and the bar hanging in front of your. Keeping your arms straight, raise the bar up in front of you to chest level. Then slowly draw the bar back to your chest, keeping it at chest level, before returning it to the start position.

L Raises (Front/Side Raise Combo)


Start with hands palm down by side, one towards the front and one towards the side. Raise straight out, up to shoulder level, in an L position. Repeat on one side for reps, then focus on the other side. For an additional challenge, you can rotate the L from one side to the other with the dumbbells raised before returning to start.

Rotating Overhead Shoulder Press


Start an overhead dumbbell shoulder press with palms facing each other. Press straight up, then open arms out wide with palms facing the front. Bring slowly down to shoulder level, before rotating back in to the start position.

Band Raises


Any move with a resistance band always challenges my shoulders in new ways. I love this one. Sit with a resistance band looped around your toes in the center. Grab both ends of the band and pull back, keeping your back straight and chest out. Pulse back as many times as possible.

Rotator Cuff On Stability Ball


After excusing the lovely shut eye picture, grab a stability ball. lay sideways across the ball. Plant your top leg in front of you and extend the bottom leg out to the side for a solid base. Keeping your arm raised off the side of your body, bend it at a 90 degree angle and rotate the dumbbell from parallel with the floor to perpendicular.

These are just 5 variations of the many great shoulder moves out there. Use resistance bands, cables, dumbbells, or barbells to complete a wide variety of lateral raises, front raises, rear delt raises, overhead presses, and upright rows. Toss in a stability ball or Bosu ball for some added challenge. Keep things at a super slow tempo to really feel the burn. Add a couple moves into your regular upper body work or 4-6 for a fully focused shoulder workout. Now, get those shoulders burning!

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