T Nation

What is a good exercise at home for the delts?

Hi all,

I’ve made most of my best delt gains using a military press, usually machine or smith press. But I’d like to try and figure out a way at home to safely build the delts. There is a certain limit to what I can put over my head at home. What are some alternatives? So far the only thing I can think of is dips, benches, maybe some lat raises and an occasional upright row.

Hi, Striker. I’ve got JUST the article for you, www.t-mag.com/nation_previous/03.html. Enjoy!!!

Thanks Tampa-Terry!

Hand-Stand Pushups…they’re Quality. If you need an explanation, I’m sure my man Mikey Malher will provide. I can do 'em, but I can’t explain 'em.

Yeah, handstand pushups are as good as they get, and as has been said by others, “a great party trick!” They’re on a pretty short list of things I want to accomplish.



Striker, if you’re interested, there are a ton of threads here on the forum on how to do handstand pushups.

Tamps…you’re one helluva T-Bro, my man. Quality. Speaking of quality, the Bucs looked dynamite yesterday, but I’m gonna have to pull for the Silver and Black on Sunday. Part of the Raider Nation. Let’s leave our individual differences aside for the time being. And, Tamps, it seems that you’re a master of low-carbs and refeeds (well, I see you mention it and get referenced), so I will be coming to you for opinions and guidance in the near future, if that’s okay with you.

Oh, home delt workout was the topic, my bad. There I go “hi-jacking” again:-)

Try some olympic lifts.

Thanks, Timbo. I really appreciate it.



Yeah, the thing with the Bucs going to the Super Bowl is major cool. Tampa has hosted the Super Bowl, but never been to one. And don’t worry 'bout the individual differences thing. It’s gonna be one helluva game! (grin)



Re low carbs & refeeds, any time. There are a lot of variations on the theme out there. All that really matters is going through as little deprivation as possible to get the results you want. I do have to give Joel Marion of Cheat Meal & Carb Refeed Fame a significant amount of credit for my success and knowledge in this area. Like any good student, I took what he taught me and added to it.

If you have an olympic bar at home, you’re all set for an excellent exercise that will work all delts. Perform hang cleans and standing overhead presses. You can combine these into a single compound exercise that works everything: hang clean the bar, press it overhead, lower it back to shoulders, then back to hang. That would be one rep. Use minimal assist from legs. Also, you seem to be focused more on frontal delts with all the pushing exercises. Don’t forget to balance will pulling exercises. Pullups are an easy one to set up for at home.

What part of the delts? For outer delts I do behind the back lying down lateral raises. For rear/ outer you can do reverse flys lying chest down on an incline bench. There are all sorts of rotator-cuff movements that will sculpt the shoulders. Hand stand push-ups will replace your military press. Standing chin shrug/raise will hit your outer and foward delt (not to mention traps).

RS - just a FYI - the rotator cuff muscles are deep muscles, so deep in fact one is under the scapula! You have to be more than ripped, you have to be ripped open to see them! Exercises for these muscles do not sculpt the shoulder directly, they increase joint stability and strength. The delts may get indirect work due to static contractions and that, like simple posing, helps to harden up a physique. Also, what is a lying down behind the back lat raise? I can’t picture this.


Striker - stick with cleans and presses as mentioned earlier and you can add push-presses, which will allow you to go heavier because of the extra leg drive. Rotator work is a good idea, but not for sculpting. In faith - Matt

Gentlemen, excellent suggestions indeed, I haven’t done many of these lifts so no doubt by experimenting with them, not only will I get some delt work, but also some of that, “I haven’t done this before so it’s a shock to my body,” thing that always works WONDERS.

True the rotator cuff is not visible but working them has increased the amount of total work I can do on my outer shoulders. The simple rotation movements with little weight baring have also helped shape my outer delts for that more pronounced round lean look. Lying down lateral raise is like doing a standing lateral raise except the movement initiates while lying on your side. It begins from nearly the same point except for an extra stretch you can begin behind your hip instead of at it. The hardest part of this movement is the initiation of it, which is the opposite of a standing lateral raise. Get Bill Pearl’s Keys to the Inner Universe. That book will show you more moves than you could ever dream of. This lying lateral raise can be done on a incline bench lying on your side and tends to be even more difficult since there should be no neutral posistion this way.

Try snatches! Nothing builds mass like heavy compound movements! These work great for the delts, traps, and over stabilty. Not too mention they make you unbelievably explosive. Plus, if you are not used to doing these sort of movements, they will really shock your muscles and should provide excellent gains in size and strength. Check out this link <a href="http://www.testosterone.net/articles/181snatch2.html>Snatch Article. Hope this helps.

Oh on your side, done those! Good exercise too! I pictured you flat on your back when you first brought them up, and I think your shoulder development form cuff work backs up my earlier post. Thanks for the clarification of the lying lat raise! In faith - Matt

Holy crap I TRIED the handstand pushup and it was hard as hell fellas!! I thought it would be easier but it was so hard but my delts definitley were feeling it!