Best Shoulder and Delta Exercises for Bodybuilding

Best Shoulder and Delta Exercises for Bodybuilding

Well, if I look at any movement of the shoulder, whether it be a side lateral raise where my arm stops on the side of my body, or whether it be a front dumbbell raise where my arm stops here on the side of my body. Or a shoulder press where my arm stops, pretty much in the same position; they’re all lacking the stretch placed on the deltoid. Any one of those heads that we can incorporate if we do a few things.

Video : 8 Best Shoulder Exercises for Boulder Shoulders 

If I were to do some exercises like this – the front delt raise – you can see if I take my arm back behind the body, look what’s happening here to the fibers in the front delt. They’re getting stretched.

Well, we’re going to do that and apply that to all heads of the deltas we go through this workout to make a perfect workout. We now also have to understand if you want to train your shoulders, or any muscle in your body completely, and you’re going to follow this channel; you need to train like an athlete. That means it’s not always about isolation.

We talked about ways to hypertrophy a certain muscle group. Sometimes dropping the weight down, leaving your ego at the door, making sure you isolate that muscle to gain maximum hypertrophy. 

However, if you want to be an athlete, at some point you’ve got to figure out how to tie it all back together again. We mentioned all the muscles in the shoulder girdle. At some point, you’ve got to get those muscles to be allowed to train together to allow for powerful movements. 

I’m going to show you exactly how to do that, too. Finally, the face pulls. Guys, you know we can’t end a shoulder workout – especially when we’re talking about the rear delt – and not include face pulls.

Let me put all this together for you, show you exactly how to do this step by step. We kick this one-off, like I said in the intro, with that all-important warmup. It’s important because of all the freedom we have in that range of motion in the shoulder. That means we’d better have it before we attempt to do these exercises.

So, we have to warmup the shoulder properly. We do that with the overhead band press.
It looks like an overhead press but looks where the resistance is coming from. It’s not from the ground up like a typical dumbbell, or barbell would be. It’s pulling you toward the front.
That means you have to activate the muscles on the backside of your body. The rear delt, and more importantly, the rotator cuff. 

This is a good activator to get your shoulder to start working properly. We know that we need the support of the rotator cuff because we do overhead activities. So, we want to warm it up. We do that here with a three-second hold. Very deliberate. Good, quality reps.
Two sets before we move on. We move onto, what else have we talked about in the beginning?

The value of those foundational exercises. The ones that you can overload the most. Which, in this case, would be the overhead press. When we do our overhead press here, we really setup to target four sets and we do it in a descending fashion. So, 10 reps, 8 reps, 6 and 6.
Ideally, you’re going to add some weight to the bar and not just have fatigue bring your reps down.

If you do that, again, we’re working on trying to overall build our strength. Now, if you’re training at home and you don’t have access to a barbell for a press, don’t think you’re getting off so easy.

You can always do the handstand press. Guys, this is not easy. As a matter of fact, anybody that does this will tell you it’s a difficult exercise. The key here is that we’re lighting up the entire shoulder girdle in a way that you can clearly overload.

For some reason, if this is too easy for you, throw a weighted vest on and you’ve just
made this thing harder. Before we’re done, we come back one more time to that same exercise here with the band.

It’s done more as a reinforcer. Neuromuscular reeducation. You just went through this exercise with the weights, with that vertical force up and down, now you want to reinforce it once again. Get the rotator cuff awakened again. Make sure it’s working.

So, we can integrate that better, and better from session, to session and make sure we avoid any of those injuries that usually come with an inaccurate warmup prior to training. Next, we have to incorporate this stretch that I said we’re often overlooking when it comes to shoulder training. We don’t do it, most of the time, in any of the other muscles that we train because it naturally works its way into the exercises.

Here, as I mentioned in the shoulders, you have to force it into what we do. But it doesn’t make it any less important. So, we can do that here in a tri-set. Basically, a 21. We’re doing cable raises. We’re doing them for the front delts, the middle delt, and the rear delt. Now, the key again is, where you’re finishing and starting. Not necessarily what’s happening in the middle because in the middle of the exercise it’s going to look just like what you do with a dumbbell.

But because of the cables, and because of how we can position our body we can place
a good stretch on the muscle as we do it. Watch as I do this rear lateral raise here in the video below. Again, a couple of things to point out. You guys know that I think in order to get the rear delt the best you have to get an extension of the arm behind the body.

Get shoulder extension, and then let it come out in front of your body, across the front of your body. Get a full stretch. We’re not really going to do that if we’re just doing dumbbell raises.

We’re going to stop at the midline. But we work our way around from the weakest to the strongest. So, we have energy when we get to the 14th or the 21st rep. So, we go to the middle delt next. Again, I’m not just raising my arm up to the side and dropping it like I would be in a regular dumbbell lateral raise. What I’m getting here is the position of my arm behind my back, getting that extra stretch on the middle delt every, single time.

You can see I’m starting with a big stretch and I’m exploring it out of there to get to the top.
We wrap around to the front, we do the same thing. Again, by positioning myself in a split stance and allowing my arm to go back into extension behind my body, I’m placing a better stretch on the front delt fibers. So, I get that more powerful contraction when I come out of that position. So, it’s a different way to apply the same stretches that you normally would with a dumbbell and get the added benefits of the stretches that are often overlooked every time we train them.

Moving on, I mentioned in the beginning – and always on this channel – if you want to look like an athlete, you’ve got to train like an athlete. One component of that is that you have to train explosively. When we try to train explosively it’s not time to try and isolate individual muscles. At this point, you want to make sure you’re including something that allows all these muscles of the shoulder girdle to work together.

We can do that with a combo of a cheat lateral, going into a dumbbell push press. What we do is load up our weight higher than what we would normally use for a lateral raise.  Again, we’re not specifically looking to activate the middle delt to do this exercise.

We’re allowing the traps to help here.  I’ve talked before about the trap strap.   

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