Weakness in the OHP

Besides the shoulders, what muscles help get the bar off of your clavical (neck area) in the over head press?  I seem to be able to press out the bar if I can get it by my nose.  And what type of exercises would help me? I have been doing seated OHP off of pins as my second exercise; would more tri work help me out? bar speed?


if the first half of movement is critical I’d rather do partials in that range instead of doing extra tricep work by pressing off pins which is less shoulder activity.
Isometric holds at nose level where you usually stale may help also.

Supraspinatus, I think.

[quote]Black Thorn wrote:
Supraspinatus, I think.[/quote]

SO I would strenghten this by…

[quote]Black Thorn wrote:
Supraspinatus, I think.[/quote]

Only as a humeral stabilizer; the supraspinatus is responsible for the first 30 degrees of abduction. During the bottom of an OHP, you are already beyond 30 degrees of abduction.

well, it’s safe to say you’ll always be able to lock out alot more weight at the top than you can get off of your shoulders. i think it’s a leverage thing.

why don’t you just use less weight ?
or use your quads.

Train partials of where your weak, like someone would with board presses if the top part of their bench was weak.

Will, work your sticking point with functional isomterics. A description of which is here.


Id personally also recommend some 1.5’S utilizing MxS parameters for about 4 weeks then going back to more basic OHP movements.

Super-strict semi-supinated dumbell presses done seated without arching the back for leverage should also be considered with a 2-3 second pause at the bottom. Make sure the dumbells stay in contact throughout the range of movement which for some means they wont go to full extension.

I also remember recommending using bands to take up your overhead press, Im assuming you are trying them? Because my advice is based on the assumption that you have been using band training.

Dont worry about which specific muscle is weak what are you gonna do about it anyway? Its never that simple anyhow since so many muscles contribute with compound movements.

Just figure out what assistance work you need and train using movements that make you work hardest at and through the sticking point.

Good lucky-charms


The serratus, and traps and scapular rotators all help get the bar moving-and speed is key in the lower range so you need to use those muscles-but its more an issue of practicing lifting the whole shoulder girdle. Also, some kinesiology major is going to laugh out of ignorance here, but the lats help get the bar started partially because of compressive forces and partially because they rotate the scapula under.

full range handstand pushups (really)