Increase your shoulder muscle size by incorporating these tips into your workout
Shoulder exercises are fairly straightforward. There isn’t a whole lot of mystery behind the basic movements. There’s presses, raises, and upright rows, and that’s about it. However, how you perform these movements will determine how much your shoulders grow. If you use these tips, you’re guaranteed to see some serious results.
Shoulder workout tip #1: Don’t throw the weight around
Use strict form, specifically in your front, side, and rear delt raises. Proper form includes:
- Shoulders pinned back
- Head level and looking straight ahead
- Use the deltoids only to raise and lower the weight
- No bouncing
- No “shucking” the weight up until the last few sets – and even then it should only be at the very end, if at all.
Watch Gabe’s tip below for details on how to properly perform a lateral raise. Note how his elbows lead the motion and his pinkies are turned up.
Shoulder workout tip #2: Chase the pump
The goal here is to use the heaviest weight possible but still get lots of volume. More sets, more reps, and less rest – that’s the secret. You want your shoulders to feel like they are on fire and the muscle is about to split through your skin. The less rest you take in between sets, the more blood you will keep in those muscle cells and the more you will stretch the fascia. Try this giant set in the middle of your workout. You won’t be disappointed, unless you don’t like pain and hard work.
This is one full circuit. The routine calls for 4 full circuits with no rest in between circuits.
|1||Standing side raises||12-15||45 lbs||None|
|1||Seated hammer strength press||12-15||3 plates each side||None|
|1||Standing front raises||12-15 each arm||45 lbs||None|
|1||Standing upright barbell row, close grip||12-15||95 lbs||None|
Shoulder workout tip #3: Work the rear delts
One of the most forgotten about portions of the shoulders are the rear deltoid muscles. If you want that awesome, full lat spread, then you need those rear delts to be serious players in the game. Apply the same principals as mentioned above to your rear delt cable pulls, bent over rear delt raises, and your lying rear delt raises.
Here’s two other exercises that most people don’t use for rear delts:
Ultra wide grip bent-over rows:
Grab a barbell as wide as possible. I literally have my hands against the outer portion, of the inside of the bar, where the weights meet the bar. Then bend over as if you are doing a Pendlay row, flare your elbows forward, and pull to your lower chest / upper stomach area. When you flare your elbows forward, you are strictly targeting the rear delts. With the elbows back, you are recruiting your lats to do most of the work.
Behind the neck lat pull downs:
Use an ultra wide grip again and lean slightly forward. Use a strict, controlled pulling motion to lower to the bar. You will need to use the mind-muscle connection to focus on using only the rear delts. It’s VERY easy to use your lats during this exercise. Visualize yourself doing a double rear biceps pose. This is the movement you are trying to mimic. It doesn’t take a whole lot of weight when the rep scheme is around 20 reps.
If you utilize these tips along with proper nutrition, you’ll be rocking some serious shoulder caps in no time. These are tips that have been developed from over 22 years of fitness experience and are proven to work.