When we talk about an aesthetic body, we imagine a muscular and well-defined body. Each muscle group is finely honed and toned. When it comes to shoulders, there is an aesthetic and fitness reason as to why you need strong shoulders. These three deltoid exercises are optimal to build muscular and well-defined shoulders.
Because of their all-round use, shoulders are often used in exercises that you might think are not even for them. They might not be actively being used, but they support all kinds of upper body movements. If you have strong shoulders, you’ll lift more, be it chest or bicep.
Even though shoulders are used so frequently, they might not be getting the workout you are aiming for. That is why you need to either incorporate these three deltoid exercises in your shoulder workouts or have a day when you work on your deltoids only.
This article covers the benefits of doing deltoid exercises, which muscles they work and how to do them properly.
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What Are Deltoids?
If you move your arms in any direction, you are using deltoids to help you. Cody Braun, a Beachbody Fitness Expert, says “your deltoids help to lift your arm in front of you, out to the side, overhead, and extend your arms behind you”.
The muscle is in a triangle like a shape, this is also where the name comes from. From the Greek letter Δ (delta), to be more precise. The deltoids are the main muscles of the shoulder. It further comprises three parts: the anterior, lateral and posterior deltoid.
When you pull weight upward or away from the shoulders, this is when your deltoids contract.
The Anatomy Of Deltoids
As we talked earlier, there are three parts to the deltoids.
1. The Anterior Deltoid
This part of the deltoid is located on the front of the shoulder. The anterior deltoids are utilized when the shoulder is either pushing upwards or forward.
You can also utilize your anterior deltoids by pressing, pulling or doing windmill motion.
2. The Lateral Deltoid
Moving from the front of the shoulder towards the back, the lateral deltoids are located in the middle of the shoulder. These also comprise the most mass out of the two other parts.
Because of their size and location, lateral deltoids are activated with even the most minimal shoulder use.
3. The Posterior Deltoid
The posterior deltoid is located at the back of the shoulder. Working your posterior deltoids is a bit tricker.
One way is to bend over and let gravity put pressure on them during the movement.
Three Effective Deltoid Exercises
Let’s move on to the deltoid exercises that utilize all three parts of your deltoids. These movements are optimal if you are looking to build strength, endurance and mass in your shoulders.
These three deltoid exercises were chosen on their effectiveness and isolated muscle contraction. All you need for these deltoid exercises is a bench and a pair of dumbbells.
1. Arnold Press (Anterior)
This movement works your anterior and lateral deltoids, with the focus being on the anterior deltoid. This exercise also uses support from your triceps.
How to do the Arnold Press:
- Take a seat on the workout bench
- Grab a pair of dumbbells and rest them on your thighs
- Start by keeping your back straight
- Now, with your palms facing towards you, lift the weights above your shoulder
- Next, while raising your arms high, twist your hands in
- Hold for a moment before bringing your arms down to your shoulders
- 2. Lateral Dumbbell Side Raise
Now, this exercise works out your lateral deltoid while taking support from your anterior deltoid and upper back.
How to do lateral dumbbell side raises:
- Hold your dumbbells to your sides with your palms facing out
- Keep your chest out, and stand straight with your feet shoulder-width apart
- Now, lift the dumbbells outwards with a slight bent in your elbows
- Hold for a second before returning to the rest position
- 3. Bent Over Lateral Raises
This is the last in our list of deltoid exercises, the primary focus of this exercise is to work your posterior deltoids. It also works a bunch of other smaller muscles like parts of your traps, lateral deltoid, and upper back muscles.
How to do bent-over lateral raises:
- Sit on a bench and grab your dumbbells
- Start by bending forward at a 45-degree angle
- Make sure your back is straight
- Now, bring the dumbbells up and outwards
- Hold for a moment before returning to the original position
Deltoid Exercises Build Boulder Shoulders
Wrapping up this list of deltoid exercises, with a reason why you need to start working them out sooner rather than later.
Function and strength of your arm depend on different muscle groups. From your forearms to your biceps to your shoulders; all of these muscles account for strength and functionality.
Your shoulders help you in push-ups and pull-ups, two basic exercises to determine someone’s fitness and strength. Something as simple as throwing a ball to something intense like throwing a punch, you need shoulder strength.
Strong shoulders also help you stay injury-proof. Well not a 100%, but it does help to prevent unnecessary injuries. Weak deltoids often lead to injury in the rotator cuffs. Shoulder strength also helps in chest and back workouts.
Lastly, shoulders are the difference between an aesthetic frame and an imbalanced body. Shoulders play a huge role in your physique. All of these points should be ample motivation for you to start doing these deltoid exercises.