16 Shoulder Exercises

Seated Dumbbell Shoulder PressHeavy Seated Dumbbell Shoulder Press

Primary Muscle(s): Shoulders (All)

  • Sit upright on a bench with your back firmly against the pad. Keep your core tight and feet anchored to the floor.
  • Bring the dumbbells up to shoulder height, raise them out to the side, and powerfully press overhead. Keep the dumbbells separate at the top of the movement.
  • Slowly lower until your triceps are slightly below parallel. Hold for .5s at the bottom and repeat. Make sure to keep your shoulders back at all times.

Tip: Do it standing to jack up the difficulty and increase core engagement.

Dumbbell SnatchDumbbell Snatch

Primary Muscle(s): Shoulders (All)

  • Place a dumbbell in between your feet and stand with your legs slightly wider than shoulder width. This is starting position.
  • Tighten your core, explode upwards, and powerfully pull the weight up and overhead. Keep your back flat and maintain strong posture.
  • Hold 1s at the top and slowly return down to start. Immediately repeat.

Tip: Pause at the bottom for 1s to avoid using momentum.

Dumbbell Push Press

db push-pressPrimary Muscle(s): Shoulders (All)

  • Stand tall with two dumbbells over your shoulders. Hold them with a neutral grip (palms facing in).
  • Dip down slightly, explode up, and powerfully press the dumbbells directly overhead.
  • Hold for 1s at the top and lower the weights back down to your shoulders. Keep your core tight throughout.

Tip: Do it on one leg or a BOSU ball to increase core stability.

Battle Ropes

battling-ropePrimary Muscle(s): Front Deltoids

  • Grab two ropes with a firm grip and squat down slightly. Sit back into your hips and keep your abs tight.
  • Vigorously pull the rope up with either arm and then throw it down. Continue to alternate up-and-down and build up speed as your arms get into a rhythm — the ropes should look like two waves.
  • Repeat for 30 seconds or until your arms give out.

Tip: You can also do battle ropes in sync and raise/lower both arms at the same time. It sort of looks like a Hulk-smash.