To develop the shoulders and achieve a powerful torso, you need to understand the anatomy of the shoulders. The shoulder has three major muscle groups; each one interacts with the other to provide an optimum range of motion and stability. Triceps and bicep exercises stimulate the Anterior Deltoid, which is located on the front of the head of the shoulders. The Medial Deltoid, which is located on the side head of the shoulders, is activated by dumbbell and side raises. Finally, the posterior deltoid, which allows the rotation of the arms outward, is engaged through chin and pull-ups as well as reverse flyes.
Exercises to Increase Shoulder Mass
1. Military Press
This is a great workout to increase mass and definition to the shoulders. To perform the military press, rest the weight on the upper chest then press upwards until the elbows lock. Bring the weight back down the chest to control the weight. Never engage the legs during the workout or the move will turn into a push press.
2. Hang Clean and Press
There is a reason why hang clean and press is a fitness staple among body builders. It improves power and adds definition to the shoulders. To start, stand with your feet just beyond shoulder-width apart. Put your hands on the bar, while keeping the back flat and the chin up. Start lowering the weight down to just above the knees. To perform the hang clean, bend the ankles and flex the knees and straps. Do a ¾ upright row by bringing the bar up in front of the body in a straight line. The bar should reach the shoulders. Now, rotate the elbows and arms under the weight, bend the knees slightly to catch the weight. Lower the bar back down to the shoulders then set it down the thighs. That’s one rep.
3. Overhead Squat
Some might struggle with this move on the first try but once you get the hang of it, you’ll breeze through this shoulder punisher!
Start by gripping your barbell into an overhead position. Pinch the shoulder blades together to lift the weight above the head. Now, as you hold the barbell up, do a squat. Keep the spine and the head straight as you perform a squat. The key is to hold the position so the shoulders are engaged without putting too much stress on the back.
4. Dumbbell Shoulder Press
If you’re serious about developing your shoulders, then add the dumbbell shoulder press to your fitness routine. This move can be done sitting up or while standing, but either way the effectiveness of this move is not diminished.
To perform a dumbbell shoulder press, hold a dumbbell in each hand. Starting on the right, lift the dumbbell to full extension of the arms then return the weight back down in one slow, controlled movement. Then, lift the left dumbbell in an alternating motion.
5. Upright Barbell Rows
This is an advance-level move that can’t be performed without fully-developed shoulder muscles. If you’re performing this for the first time, we recommend finding a spotter to assist you.
Start by holding the bar an inch inside shoulder width. Bend the elbows and lift the weight up until it reaches the front of the body. As you complete the motion, make sure the shoulders are pointing outwards the body and the bar must be just below the chin. Bring the weight back to complete the rep.