Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Building Bigger Shoulders

When we talk about male physique we often refer to the x-factor as being the ideal shape that we want our bodies to be in. This is determined by having large shoulders and chest with a narrow waist followed by large legs to complete the "X" look. This posting will focus on developing the shoulder area (Upper part of the X) as you strive to cap off your shoulders to boost your physique.

First it's important to understand the makeup of your shoulders. It's comprised of 4 muscles; Anterior Deltoid, Middle Deltoid, Posterior Deltoid, and the Rotator Cuff. Each muscle plays an important roll in this ball and socket joint as you move your arm through the entire range of motion. To develop each muscle in the shoulder group, it's important to do exercises that place the particular muscle in focus to maximize the stimulation placed on the muscle fibers. As a general rule of thumb, starting with larger complex exercises is best followed by sculpting exercises afterwords.

List of Shoulder Exercises
  • Military Press                         Barbell Shoulder Press
  • Arnold Press                          Dumbbell Shoulder Press
  • Barbell Front Raises               Dumbbell Front Raises
  • Cable Front Raises                 Dumbbell Lateral Raises
  • Cable Lateral Raises              Cable Rear Delt Reverse Fly
  • Bent-Over Lateral Raises       Barbell Upright Rows
  • Dumbbell Upright Rows         Cable Upright Rows

Sample Workout
  • Military Press 2 Warmup Sets of 20 Reps followed by 4 Working Sets of 10 Reps
  • Dumbbell Lateral Raises 4 Working Sets of 10 Reps
  • Cable Upright Row 3 Sets of 10 Reps
  • **Superset**
  • Cable Rear Delt Reverse Fye 3 Sets of 10 Reps
  • Bent over Lateral Raises 3 Sets of 15 Reps (Burn Out)

Helpful tips

When working your shoulders it's important to keep a mind-to-muscle connection that allows you to work the shoulder muscles as the primary muscle group and not the secondary muscles supporting it. If you can't feel it in your shoulders, but rather in your triceps or forearms, there's a good chance that you're not doing the exercise properly. If this is the case, drop down in weight and do the exercise in full range of motion with strict from. Another tip that will place more focus on the deltoids is to keep your elbows back during your overhead presses. This is make the middle deltoid do the majority of the lifting and not the triceps.


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