The shoulders are comprised of 2 main muscle groups, the deltoids and the rotator cuff muscles. The deltoids, also known as delts, are located directly above the arms and cover the shoulder joints. They consist of the anterior or front deltoid, the lateral or side deltoid, and the posterior or rear deltoid. When trained properly, delts can provide you with the boulder shoulder look that will leave many envious.
The rotator cuff muscles are comprised of 4 components, teres minor, infraspinatus, supraspinatus, and subscapularis. And while these muscles don’t offer much in terms of appearance, they are extremely vital to shoulder movements, and thus to the development of the highly coveted delts. Below are 5 shoulder training tips.
1. Warm up
It’s important to note that shoulder muscles are a complex part of the body, and as such, they tend to be injury-prone if not handled with care. Warming up is an essential part of weight training, and nowhere is this truer than when it comes to shoulders. So before engaging in any lifting, take five minutes to warm up your shoulders by doing a few stretches along with one or two mobility exercises.
2. Keep the Posterior Deltoids in Mind
The majority of training exercises tend to favor the front and side shoulder muscles. More often than not, the rear deltoids wind up being left in the dust. To alleviate the problem, simply ensure that you include such exercises as bent over rear delt raise, pull-ups, and rowing motions.
3. Mix in Isolation
To increase muscle width, shoulder isolation exercises need to be included in your training routine. These serve to isolate each individual muscle and thus increase shoulder width. Shoulder isolation exercises include the anterior raise used to isolate the front deltoid, and the lateral raise for isolating the, you guessed it, lateral deltoid. Both exercises are performed with dumbbells, and require proper feet placement and raising of the arms to the point where they are parallel to the floor.
4. Keep All of Your Shoulder Muscles Fit
Again, rotator cuff muscles are of utmost importance. Shoulder joints rely heavily on this muscle group, even more so than they do on actual joint ligaments. If they’re not kept strong, they will get damaged when put under stress which, along with inducing injury, will substantially hinder your ability to build your deltoids. Both internal and external rotation exercises are needed; they can be performed with weights or without.
5. Prevent Overuse
In order to grow, muscles need rest. The shoulder muscle groups are also activated by exercises intended for the betterment of pectorals and triceps. So plan your routine with that in mind to maximize shoulder muscle growth.
There you have it, 5 tips to build up your shoulders and acquire upper body thickness. Remember, however, that proper diet and weight training go hand in hand. In fact, achieving that highly sought after lean muscular look is 60 percent training and 50 percent diet. Yes, you read it right; that does add up to 110 percent which is precisely what you need to give it.