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Am I Overtraining My Shoulders?


Right now I've been working out for almost two years and I�??m 5'11" at 176 pounds (I started at about 150), and I often feel like my shoulders are weak and are holding me back. I've seen some writings suggesting that shoulders don't need much direct training if one engages in a lot of compound back/chest exercises. My upper-body routine is:

Day One:
Bench Press
Incline Dumbbell Press
Overhead tricep press or tricep extensions

Day Two:
T-Bar Rows
1-Handed Cable Rows
Bicep Curls

Day Three:
Military Press
Standing Row
Bent-Over Laterals

Day Four:

All exercises are three sets of eight reps, every month or so I switch to sets of twelve for a month and then back.

Am I overtraining my shoulders by hitting them directly after two days of hitting them with my chest and back work? Should I ease up and just do lighter shoulder exercises, or none at all?


Not in my opinion, unless you have signs, like excessive ongoing soreness or low strength increase or even decrease.


That is a lot of shoulder work for three consecutive days, but if you treat it like a specialization program it could work in your favor. After four weeks or so (less if you develop any shoulder pain or severe soreness), back off the volume for a while and let your delts recover. Once they're feeling good and fresh you can pick the volume back up again.


My opinion is to listen to your body. If your routine isn't causing pain, then you're not overtraining. However, be aware of anything that doesn't seem right. You should be able to detect subtle changes in flexibilty or tightness as you progress. Also, if you are concerned with overtraining, after three or four weeks of you regular routine, train with less volume for a week or two. That will help recovery and decrease the chance of injury.


I also had bad pains in my shoulders but I started to do some scrappushups on my offdays and it has helped alot with the pains. Check out the articles shoulder savers

It helped me atleast so it might be something for you too :slightly_smiling:


If you're really focused on strength and mass in your delts, you need to change your routine. I only train my shoulders once, MAYBE twice a week.

I do Militaries and shrugs. Increase your weight and decrease your reps.


Military (front and behind the head)
4 sets of 3 reps on each.
Be very careful on the weight because you could injure a cuff.

Shrugs (Barbell and Dumbells)
HEAVY.....don't be scared! You should know your limits
4 sets of 5 reps.....


I heard...can't remember where but some article on here that your shoulders respond best to supersetting work. Like doing overhead press supersetted with lateral raises. The heavy lifting comes from when you do heavy bench as they get adequate training there.


I focuse on compound weights for the most part. I suppose you could crank out some high rep sets with good results, me, I smash the shit out of my arms and chest. I'm a little more careful with my delt workout. I don't want to injure or tear anything.


Is that your complete routine?

Where are the legs man?

Try HEAVY push presses followed by 3 way shoulder raises

(10-20 reps rear delt raise, side delt raise, front delt raise no rest in between any)

If you have been working out for 2 years and been only using reps in the 8-12 range during this time you might want to consider doing stuff like 5x5 or 10x3 for awhile.