T Nation

Shoulders: What are *You* Doing?

I’d like to hear what folks are doing for their shoulder routines these days.

How do your shoulders fit into your general goals and workouts? What have you found works best for you for strength/growth gains (rep ranges, freq, etc). Working through injuries?

You get the idea… thanks.

I started out single dumbell overhead press and dumbell rows (one arm at a time). Now I’ve switched over to barbell work and I’m liking the progression. I find my shoulders my best body part anyway.

  1. Rear delt raises
    2)Standing military press
    3)side raises
    4)Behind the neck press

This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.

Seated DB Laterals
Seated DB Presses
Reverse Grip Seated BB Presses

If My wrist is acting up, and I can’t do the DB laterals, I sometimes substitute the lateral machine where you have a pad rest on your forearms. Even so, I like to do some sort of isolation work before the presses. I still press damn heavy (don’t really care about weights though), but I feel that the delts are pre fatigued, and you get less tricep assistance. I also don’t do any direct rear delt work, as I figure all the rowing I do for my back has actually given me somewhat decent rear delts.

SOmetimes instead of the reverse presses, I’ll actually do standing push-presses with a BB. While it is primarily a leg movement, I try to ‘milk’ the negative portion, and really toast everything (after the laterals and db presses)

S

[quote]The Mighty Stu wrote:
Even so, I like to do some sort of isolation work before the presses. I still press damn heavy (don’t really care about weights though), but I feel that the delts are pre fatigued, and you get less tricep assistance. [/quote]

Do you try to pre-fatigue the lateral delts or the front delts before presses?

I’ve been experimenting with prefatiguing delts before mil/push presses. On the ‘lighter’ days where I go a little higher rep, I like the pre-fatigue, but the lower rep, higher weight days I think I lose too much and do the isolation work after the heavy sets.

[quote]AlteredState wrote:
Today, I’ll be doing 10 sets of 10 reps of standing barbell clean and press with a 2.5" thick bar.

Then I’ll do a couple of sets each of ant, lat, rev flye.[/quote]

Just doing bar work, or adding weights?

Do you find that you respond better to the higher volume? Do you just do these once a week? More? Not often?

Low rep Behind Neck Press, then a superset of machine shoulder presses and dumbbell laterals. I’ve been neglecting my shoulders far too long, so I’m trying to build strength right now so I can use heavier weights when I start focusing more on mass.

I like the push press/slow eccentric for stength, alternate days with standing db military press, and do cable laterals every shoulder workout.

This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.

[quote]SteelyD wrote:
The Mighty Stu wrote:
Even so, I like to do some sort of isolation work before the presses. I still press damn heavy (don’t really care about weights though), but I feel that the delts are pre fatigued, and you get less tricep assistance.

Do you try to pre-fatigue the lateral delts or the front delts before presses?

I’ve been experimenting with prefatiguing delts before mil/push presses. On the ‘lighter’ days where I go a little higher rep, I like the pre-fatigue, but the lower rep, higher weight days I think I lose too much and do the isolation work after the heavy sets.

[/quote]

Well, I have in the past tried doing front raises straight into front presses, and it did hurt like hell. But my basic thinking is that most people worry so much about their front delts, that they don’t develop that ‘capped’ look. So by doing laterals first, you’re hitting the medial portion when you’re fresh, as well as making them unable to assist the front head when you’re doing your presses. I’ve gotten away with periods of not even doing any shoulder pressing, rationalizing that the anterior head receives enough stimulation from all the heavy chest work I do. I still kept the laterals though.

S

I start with (for MU activation) low rep/heavy push press from behind the neck (better stretch in delts), one-arm corner press, low cable upright rows with rope(both hypertrophy rep range 8-12), behind back cable lateral raise, cable front raise(light/high reps with drop sets)

  1. Heavy Strict Standing Mil Press 5x5, 3x3 and 5,3,1 reps

2)Seated Dumbell presses, weighted dips, Pull-ups, Heavy DB rows, and cleans.

I might start adding back in some DB raises.

military press 3 sets
front raise, 3-4 sets working down the line
rear delt raise, 3-4 sets

thats it. delts are small and dont need a shitload of work.

Military Press twice a week has lead to much better growth than light weight raises ever have achieved in the past.

Other than that rear delt raises and external rotations when I have a spare 5 minutes.

I alternate between low rep/heavy and higher rep work, and I figured with benching, my front delts would get enough stimulation, but I had to start working them specifically. I do a lot of heavy work for my lateral and rear delts, and when I go lighter, I focus on explosiveness

I sometimes do heavy barbell seated presses in the 4-6 rep range for 4-6 sets. I sometimes do seated dumbell presses in the 8-12 range for 3-4 sets. With both approaches I control the negative (which ends up being almost 2 secs) and I try to lift as explosive as I can. I train shoulders 4x weekly (I do a full body routine).

[quote]The Mighty Stu wrote:
Well, I have in the past tried doing front raises straight into front presses, and it did hurt like hell. But my basic thinking is that most people worry so much about their front delts, that they don’t develop that ‘capped’ look. So by doing laterals first, you’re hitting the medial portion when you’re fresh, as well as making them unable to assist the front head when you’re doing your presses. I’ve gotten away with periods of not even doing any shoulder pressing, rationalizing that the anterior head receives enough stimulation from all the heavy chest work I do. I still kept the laterals though.

S
[/quote]

X2

I’m a shoulder dominant bencher and have avoided the bench for months now instead using DB presses and that’s helping.
My anterior delts have gotten a lot of work that way. When I do pre-exhaust, I opt for lat raises. Optionally, I’ll throw in standing db raises where you hold the dbs neutral at your side and bring them up to your armpits. For me I feel them in my lat delts.

Notably missing from the responses are Arnold Presses… ?

I’ll start off with a compound movement for example here is my shoulder workout:

Hang Clean/ Press

Then in one giant set I’ll do:
D.B. side lateral raise
D.B. front raises
D.B. shoulder press,

for about 3-4 sets of 10-12 reps. Then I’ll finish off with some B.B. shrugs.

[quote]SteelyD wrote:
How do your shoulders fit into your general goals and workouts? What have you found works best for you for strength/growth gains (rep ranges, freq, etc). Working through injuries? [/quote]

Recently, shoulders are done as part of a mostly-full body routine, 2-3 days a week, 2-3 exercises, 2-3 sets per exercise (funny seeing it written down like that. I actually hadn’t noticed that before. Whoops.) anywhere from 5-12 reps each.

For now, I’m responding better to the heavier/lower rep range. If I work shoulders three times per week for too many weeks in a row, I stall out, but dropping back to twice a week for 1-2 weeks kicks everything right back into place.

I start each session with upper back pre-hab work: 1 exercise for 3-4x15. Usually face pulls (with a 3-5-second peak hold) or a 1-arm cable cuban press.

Some “favorite” shoulder exercises are dumbbell military press (old school military, heels touching), dumbbell push press, 1-arm dumbbell press, and a power lateral raise (“cheat” concentric, strict eccentric).

Last session looked like:
A. Dumbbell military press 1x8 (warm-up) 2x5-8
B1. 1-arm power lateral 2x8-10
B2. strict, back against the wall 2-arm lateral raise 2x10-12

And then moved into training the back.

Next session will probably be a military press/push press/jerk triset and posterior delt work. Tons o’ fun.