10 Best Compound Exercises To Build Strong Shoulders August 4, 2016

Do you want strong shoulders? Do you want your shoulders to be broad and attractive? Well, there are certain specific exercises that can help you get the kind of shoulders you want to have!

Want to know them? Go ahead with the post!

Let’s have a look at the most effective Compound Shoulder Exercises:

1. Overhead Press:

Overhead Press

Image: Shutterstock

To perform an overhead press, press the barbell above the head. Weightlifters around the world use many different techniques to perform this press. Some of the main variations include the barbell military press, push press and clean jerk and snatch.

These exercises develop the trapezius, triceps and many upper-back muscles. The only thing you need to be cautious of is injury. Increase the frequency and weight at well-spaced out intervals, before gradually picking up the pace.

[ Read: Exercises For Bursitis And Shoulder Rehabilitation ]

2. Rows:


Image: Shutterstock

A common compound shoulder exercise is rows. Rows usually imitate a rowing motion. Some of the variations include chin-ups, pull-ups, lat pull-downs, low cable rows, one-arm dumbbell rows and chest-supported rows. These exercises help develop the back, arms and shoulder muscles including the biceps.

The exercise also works the latissimus dorsi, brachioradialis, posterior deltoid, rhomboids and the trapezius muscles. The exercise itself is quite steady, and hence reduces the risk of injury.

3. Lateral Raises:

Lateral Raises

Image: Shutterstock

The lateral raise is an effective yet underrated compound shoulder workout.

To perform a lateral raise, take a couple of barbells. Stand straight and bring the barbells up to the side. Make sure your palms face inward. Without swinging the barbells, lift them to the side with a slight bend at the elbow. Continue lifting until your arms are parallel to the floor. Hold the position for a few seconds and gradually bring the barbells down the side again. Repeat.

This exercise helps build the deltoids and the traps.

4. Seated Shoulder Press:

Seated Shoulder Press

Image: Shutterstock

This is one compound exercise that focuses on the main three shoulder heads, concentrating on the front deltoid.

The back support should be set at an angle of 10 degrees. Adjust the position to develop more power. Lower the scapula; create an arch so that the upper and lower back touch the rest. Start by raising the dumbbells to shoulder height. Lift them up so that the elbows are fully extended. Hold the position for 2 seconds and lower the dumbbells back to shoulder height. Repeat.

5. Shrug:


Image: Shutterstock

The shrug is probably the funniest exercise to look at, but pull one wrong move, and you could be nursing an injury.

To perform a shrug, pick the barbells. Stand straight and bring the barbells up to the side. Make sure your palms face inward. In a squeezing motion move your shoulders towards the ears. Hold for 2-3 seconds and lower the barbells to the starting position. Repeat.

The shrug concentrates on the trapezius and the posterior deltoids.

6. Incline Lateral Raise:

Incline Lateral Raise

Image: Shutterstock

The incline lateral raise is a compound shoulder exercise that is slightly different from the regular lateral press.

Lift one dumbbell and bring it up to the left side and lean at a 70-degree angle on your right. This exercise develops the deltoids, traps, wings and the back. The exercise is tougher as you will feel the burn in your arms sooner.

7. Bench Press:

Bench Press

Image: Shutterstock

The Bench press is probably the most common exercise today. We see it in almost every movie gym scene today. It is one of the best compound shoulder exercises and it helps you measure your upper body strength.

There are many variations to the routine, some which include the use of dumbbells and resistance bands. Sometimes the bench may be adjusted to a decline or an incline to achieve efficacy. In terms of muscles exercised, the bench press is pretty similar to the overhead press. Some of the other muscles that it affects include the chest muscles, pectorals, anterior deltoids and triceps.

8. Reverse Fly:

 Reverse Fly

Image: Shutterstock

The reverse fly is one exercise designed to develop strength in the posterior deltoids and the rotator cuff. It is also good for developing the upper-back muscles.

Lie face-down on an incline bench with your stomach pressing the bench. Hold the dumbbells in front of you, with the palms facing each other. Bend the elbows slightly and raise the dumbbells to an angle of 90 degrees to the bench. Hold for 2 seconds and lower your arms gradually. Repeat.

9. Front Raises:

Front Raises

Image: Shutterstock

The front raise is slightly different from the lateral raise.

You begin by holding the dumbbells to the sides with the knuckles facing forward. With a slightly bent elbow, raise one dumbbell to shoulder height. Hold the position for 2 seconds. Lower the arm and alternate with the other arm. Repeat. To make this an effective workout, simply lift both of them together. The exercise works the deltoids, triceps and traps.

[ Read: Shoulder Exercises You Should Include In Workout ]

10. Dumbbell Upright Rows:

Dumbbell Upright Rows

Image: Shutterstock

This exercise looks fun and is probably the easiest one to perform. The only caution to be exercised here is to not swing.

Hold the dumbbells in both arms with knuckles facing forward. Think of your hands as hooks. With a slight bend in the elbows, lift one dumbbell up to shoulder height, hold for 2 seconds and bring it down the side again; alternate with the other arm. You can lift both arms together as well. This exercise helps develop strong delts, traps and rhomboids.

Shoulders can be difficult to exercise. Without strong shoulders, your physique lacks that x-factor. Compound shoulder exercises help you target all the muscle groups in your shoulders. Regular exercise can help you develop strength and endurance.

So, what are you waiting for! If you want to lose weight or get that figure you always dreamed about, do these shoulder compound exercises!

Tell us whether any other exercises helped you develop your shoulder muscles. Leave a comment below!

Recommended Articles:

The following two tabs change content below.