Build Strong Shoulders with These Exercises
Strong shoulders are a key component of overall fitness. Developing your shoulder muscles helps with many other exercises, including pull ups and bench presses, and helps you prevent injuries when doing heavy lifting. These weightlifting exercises show you how to get strong, toned shoulders, so grab your weightlifting gloves and start lifting today.
Hang Clean and Press
The ultimate shoulder exercise, the hang clean and press, combines standard and Olympic lifting while developing speed, power and strength. Load weight on a standard Olympic barbell, then deadlift the weight into a standing position, letting the bar rest against your thighs. Next, lower the bar to just above your knees, bending at the waist and knees for support. The hang clean comes next: extend your ankles, flex your traps and knees and bring the bar to a straight line in front of your body until it is level with your shoulders. Rotate your elbows under the bar, catching it on the front of your upward-facing palms, shoulders and chest. Bend your knees slightly and press the bar up to full extension. Lower the bar back to your shoulders, then complete the rep by dropping it back down to your thighs.
This exercise targets the front deltoids but involves other parts of the shoulders as well. Hold light to medium weights with your arms straight down and palms facing the thighs. Keeping the elbows slightly bent, slowly lift your arms up to shoulder level. Exhale and slowly lower the weight back down. Repeat this move for one to three sets of 12 to 16 repetitions.
The key to doing this exercise correctly is to bend the elbows slightly but keep them pointing toward the back of the room. Start by sitting or standing with light to medium weights at your sides. Lift your arms out to the sides until the weights are at shoulder level. Slowly lower the weights back down and repeat for one to three sets of 10 to 16 reps.
Don’t forget to use gym gloves when lifting to prevent injury and stay comfortable throughout your entire workout!