T Nation

Front Delts

How many of you T-peeps still train the front delts directly despite the fact that it’s been said in this magazine that doing so results in overtraining? I’m interested to hear from people who either stopped or never even started training the front delts about how you feel it has affected the size of your shoulders, your overall strength, or whatever.

If you mean with movements like front raises or something, my answer is that I haven’t done them in 20 years and I haven’t felt the lack. But I have recently re-incorporated various vertical presses into my routine, and feel that they’ve made a real contribution to my overall upper body development.

Front delts? Haven’t trained them directly in years. I get plenty of development from horizontal pushing movements.
On the other hand, I have incorporated many movements (lean away laterals, upright rows,etc.) for development of the other heads of the deltoid. They have made a substantial difference in my strength and size.

If you’re overhead pressing with any regularity, as one should, you don’t need direct work.

I had never trained them directly until last year. I never saw the need. The only reason I do them now is that I tried front raises for the hell of it last year and realized how weak I was in the movement. I saw it as a bit of a challenge, so now I throw in a few sets during my shoulder session every week. I’ve noticed slight changes in the shape of the shoulder right near the chest, but I wouldn’t consider it a necessary movement.

Speaking of up-right rows - has anyone found that they pinch something in the rhombi area like I keep doing? If I go lighter then nothing seems to be working with the delts but 5-10 more pounds and ouch! for like almost a week. Otherwise I’ve seen the comments about delts getting all this work from doing other movements but I don’t think I would ever jsut give up on all movements. Presses, rows and some lateral and front raises are all I do (maybe that’s a lot huh?)

With bad rotator cuffs I’m always wishing I could press more though. right now the most I can hack is 60lb db’s x8 reps with 2 warmups sets - 50lbs and 55lbs once each. Sucks to be me huh?

Speaking of shoulders maybe this next question will start some intersting posts. Does anyone ever do reverse sets? Like instead of working upto your heavier set(s) starting heavy and working downward in weight? I’m sure this is nothing new but I haven’t been around the forums long enough to see the concept given a name.

Funny thing is I’ve only recently started doing this approach with side & front raises because of the rotator issue. If I don’t, then I feel as if though Ii can’t work my delts very hard or with much weight. I’m going to try it tomorrow with the db presses too and I’ll write back to say what my thoughts are.

I’m actually talking more about military presses than front raises. On his forum, CT said that 99.9% of people don’t need to train the front delts. I assume that includes presses. So let me rephrase the question. How many of you do overhead presses?


Push presses, yes. Regular old, static millitaries? No.

Yes I do over head presses:

Half Press in a power rack and
Push Press

I do military presses always in either a dumbell or barbell form. Benches and rows just don’t seem to do enough for my shoulders.

Only as a secondary exercise. I hit them with military press, behind and in front of the head, and dumbbell shoulder presses. Plus everyone hits them when they do incline.

Bench press is all the front deltoid work I will ever need. If were doing an overhead press on the same day, I would switch to dumbells for bench. Long ago I isolated f.d.s with front raises, etc, but this was way too much with bench presses in the routine. I’ve had a lot fewer bench problems since I stopped this.

I used to train front delts directly, but then I smartened up. I use these muscles on bench day, tricep day (close grips), shoulder day for presses… how much more can they take. Better yet, how much more stimulation do they need? I would suggest front delt work for rehabbing, shaping or whatever, but as a necessary part of your workouts, not really, but I see lots of powerlifters focussing on them to help their bench, so I guess we all have our needs.

Richard cranium, you are experiencign rotator cuff impingement. Stop. Yes I do overhead presses as a supplimentary for the bench. It’s a good movement when done right for the front delts and tricepts (i go fairly close). As you know, the front delts and tri’s are very active in the bench… plus delts look pretty.

I don’t really remember CT saying that you don’t need to directly work the delts and find it a bit odd since he has delt work in all his programs. I hadn’t done any direct delt work for a long time and finally started them again due to CT’s OVT program. I don’t feel any overtraining effects and actually feel stronger in my bench.

I do overhead presses and like Jared, I like to throw in some front barbell raises occasionally. I don’t feel like I’m overtraining my front delts.

I think Poliquin was saying that you dont need to train the front delts with front raises, etc. I’m pretty sure he uses military, behind the neck presses, and the like in his programs.

I do behind the neck overhead press, and side, front and rear delt raises. My shoulders are holding back my bench, i think, so I am trying to jakc it up.