Your shoulders are made up of three joints, so there are plenty of exercises that can work to strengthen them and keep them healthy, especially since shoulder injuries tend to be common among athletes. But which of these shoulder exercises are the best?
And which ones do you need to avoid? By looking at the structure of your shoulder and the different functions it serves, you can find exercises that will truly help strengthen it and help you avoid injury while playing sports or participating in other activities.
Here are the five best shoulder exercises for men, with information on how to do each one and why they’re important.
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1) Military Press
The military press is a compound exercise that involves pushing weight overhead. It works more than just your shoulders: it also targets your triceps, traps, chest, and back muscles. If you’re going to do one overhead pressing exercise, make it military press.
The military press works your shoulders, triceps, traps, chest, and back muscles. It can be performed with a barbell or dumbbells. The exercise is done standing up and requires good coordination between your upper and lower body to balance out.
This means that it targets not only your shoulders but also your core. A good strategy to ensure you’re targeting your shoulders is to make sure that you feel it in them at the top of each rep before lowering them back down again.
Lowering your weights too quickly isn’t just ineffective; it can cause injury as well. So take some time at the top of each rep to hold yourself there while you feel every muscle contract before lowering them back down again under control.
2) Lateral Raise
The lateral raise is one of your best shoulder exercises because it works all three deltoid heads—the front, middle, and rear. It’s also a great way to target your traps and rhomboids, or upper back muscles. Here’s how to do it: Stand tall with a dumbbell in each hand.
Hold your arms straight out at shoulder height (A). Bend one arm, lowering that dumbbell behind you as you simultaneously raise the other arm forward (B). Alternate from side to side in a fluid motion without dropping either arm. Continue until failure.
That’s 1 rep. Do 3 sets of 10 reps on each side, resting 30 seconds between sets. If you have a difficult time feeling it in your shoulders and traps, try doing them standing sideways with one hand against a wall for support.
You can also perform these lying faceup on an incline bench or decline bench. If done correctly, you should feel these all over—not just in your shoulders but also across your upper back and down into your rear delts and lats. That’s how they become effective compound exercises that help build muscle all over.
3) Front Raise
This exercise is a basic overhead press but focuses on targeting your shoulders and building overall strength. Because it works your front deltoids, you’ll see improved posture and better form while bench pressing if you do front raises regularly.
Stand with your feet hip-width apart and hold weights in each hand at shoulder height, elbows bent to 90 degrees, and palms facing forward. Raise weights out in front of you until they’re just above chest level, then slowly lower them back down to starting position.
Try three sets of eight reps per set three times a week. For best results, do these after you’ve done an exercise that works your triceps (i.e., dips or close-grip bench presses). For example: perform one set of front raises immediately after one set of close grip bench presses, rest 60 seconds and repeat another two more times.
4) Rear Deltoid Raise
Rear deltoid raises are one of the best shoulder exercises. It targets both middle and posterior deltoids. You can do these exercises using dumbbells or a barbell. Both variations are demonstrated in the video below.
Place your arms straight out with hands facing forward and hold a dumbbell with each hand. For more resistance, use a lighter weight (heavier weights will provide less resistance).
Slowly raise your arms to your sides until they are parallel to the floor while making sure not to move them backward at all (this will make sure you’re training your middle deltoids instead of your front deltoids).
Lower slowly back down to starting position under control while keeping hands straight throughout the exercise. Repeat 15-20 times on each side per set.
Front raises is another effective shoulder exercise that works your anterior deltoids. Although it doesn’t recruit as many muscle fibers as a regular bench press, it can help you build mass and maintain muscle definition in your shoulders.
It’s also less stressful on your rotator cuff, making it a good alternative if you’re experiencing shoulder pain or discomfort when doing heavy presses.
5) Bent Over Rows
Bent over rows may seem like an odd choice to be considered one of the best shoulder exercises for men, but it is truly a great movement. Because you are moving in a horizontal plane, you need to activate your core and glutes in order to maintain good form.
The bent-over row is particularly great at building up those underused muscles around your shoulders that help with pulling motions and overall posture.
In addition, standing while performing bent over rows will help ensure you don’t hyperextend your lower back as well as add more resistance through your upper body due to increased core engagement. If you have access to a Smith machine, use it!
How Do Men Get Perfect shoulders?
There are numerous exercises that can be done to build and shape muscular shoulders. Some of these exercises include chest presses, lateral raises, front raises, upright rows, and shrugs. All of these exercises should be done with free weights or machines.
Simply by working out with free weights or machines, eating right, and following an overall fitness program. If you want to get serious about building up your shoulders and giving them a masculine shape, you need to pay attention to some of these workouts.
Start doing them today and see how they can impact your body in just weeks! These five workout routines will help you strengthen your shoulders as well as give them a more masculine look. Keep reading for details on each exercise.
Are Push ups good for Shoulders?
Push-ups are a fantastic exercise to build your chest and arms, as well as strengthen your core. But that’s not all. Did you know push-ups are also great for strengthening your shoulders? The placement of our hands-on push-ups can affect which muscles we target, so it’s important to position yourself accordingly.
When we place our hands on push-up bars or goblets, we can focus primarily on strengthening your chest and triceps (the muscle in front of your upper arm). However, when you place your hands beneath you (as if holding a cookie between two fingers), it shifts more attention toward your shoulders and back.
So while they may not build as much strength in one area or another, they still deserve their spot in any good workout routine!
Will 50 pushups a day do anything?
There’s no question that working out is good for you. But can doing 50 pushups a day really make any difference? Of course, it can—the question is whether it will. The University of New Mexico did an experiment with three groups of healthy young men and women.
One group did no exercise, one group worked out once a week, and one group worked out six days a week. Over time, those who exercised reported fewer headaches and lower blood pressure—which could have been a coincidence—but those who worked out six days a week also developed thicker bones and lost more weight than either of the other two groups.
So 50 pushups every day may be excessive (unless you’re already fit), but working out regularly will help keep your body running smoothly.
How many pushups should a man do?
As a rule of thumb, a guy who does four to six pushups should be able to bench-press his body weight. One who can do 12 to 15 reps should be able to bench two times his body weight.
If you’re trying to develop bigger pecs, you’ll want to shoot for 20-plus pushups, says Ryan Hurst, Ph.D., CSCS, assistant professor of exercise science at Lasell College in Massachusetts. Just don’t expect that upper chest muscle development without doing some moves that target it directly with weights or resistance bands.
To get our top 10 tips on how many pushups you should do every day—and why!—read more here: How Many Pushups Should a Man Do?