Blog 6 Best Shoulder Exercises For Building Muscle

6 Best Shoulder Exercises For Building Muscle

Strong and resilient shoulders are necessary for performing various daily functions, especially when you age and lose muscle mass with time.

When this happens, you frequently experience shoulder injuries which can be disastrous for your health. These injuries make even mundane tasks like carrying supplies or lifting a baby look like a considerable effort. Therefore, one way to care for yourself is by looking after your shoulder health and taking steps to build the required shoulder muscles.

Exercise is a guaranteed way to keep your body, including your shoulders, fit. With proper shoulder exercises, you can build stability, resilience, and flexibility in your shoulders and the area around them and keep them injury-free.

We’ve collected a list of some efficient and simple shoulder workouts for growing muscles to help you achieve strong shoulders.


1. Shoulder Press

Shoulder Press

You can perform this exercise while you are standing or in a seated position. Carry dumbbells in both hands and hold the weight at shoulder level with an overhead grip. Keep the hands under the handles of the weight. Start the exercise while keeping your feet parallel, hip distance apart from each other, and your back straight.

Take the dumbbells above your head while pressing and gradually lowering the weight to the starting point. Keep your abdomen braced; your pelvic should be tipped inward and glutes contracted to avoid arching your back.

If you have any previous injuries or pain in the shoulder area, be careful about the exercise intensity. Also, don’t forget to use the shoulder braces or supports while doing shoulder exercises. There are multiple supports for shoulders available, so make sure to buy them from trusted retailers or eCommerce stores.

2. Front Delt Raise

Front Delt Raise

Performing a front delt raise is a great way to improve shoulder mobility and build upper body strength. To start this exercise, you should stand while your feet are planted flat on the ground; they should be at least one foot spaced out. The dumbbells should be secure in your hands, and your palms should face the thighs.

Bring your arms out and gradually raise them in front of you. Move them up until they are right above the floor in a horizontal position. Ensure a slight curvature in the elbow while you raise your arms. Hold for a moment, then lower your arms unhurriedly without giving them a jerk or using momentum.

Bring the arms down until they are parallel to your thighs. Keep control of your movement and gently move them in an up-down motion. Also, your wrists should be neutral throughout this exercise, without any bend.

3. Rear deltoid raise

Rear deltoid raise

This exercise is also known as Lateral Delt Raise; it is a high-value exercise and targets the trapezius, rotator cuff, and middle deltoid. For this exercise, again, you need light weights.

Begin your exercise by maintaining at least one-foot distance between your feet. Hold dumbbells in both hands and maintain a neutral grip on them. Bend the arm slightly to prevent the elbow joint from locking out fully. For preliminary support, brace your core, trunk, and legs.

Lift your hands with dumbbells up and out to your sides until your arms are roughly parallel to the ground while staying at your shoulder level. Stop for a moment before the dumbbells elevate higher than your clavicles. Try to keep your shoulders depressed and avoid shrugging.

Slowly bring the arms down, keeping your control on your arm’s movement intact. Repeat the process and complete 2 to 3 sets of 12 to 15 reps each.

4. Arnold Press

Arnold Press

This exercise targets posterior deltoids, Anterior, medial, and rotator cuff, so it hits the shoulder from all around. This exercise helps improve shoulder stability and builds shoulder muscles.

Keep your core activated, your back straight, and your feet hip distance away from each other. You can pick heavier loads for this exercise too. Start the exercise with dumbbells in both hands and your arms bent. Hold the weights at shoulder level; your palms should face your body.

Take the elbows out while turning the wrists; your palms should be facing forward as you take the weights over your head. Take your hands as high as possible, so your biceps are slightly away from your ears. Slowly move back down and follow the same movements without lurching your elbows or the lower arm. Aim for two to three sets with 12 to 15 reps each.

5. Renegade Row

Renegade Row

This exercise is very effective as it engages full body muscles. It is an effective exercise for building strength in your shoulder. It is a pull exercise in which you will pull the weight towards yourself. At the same time, it gives you the benefits of doing planks due to the plank-like posture you must maintain during this exercise.

Start by adjusting your body on the floor plank-like position while keeping dumbbells in both hands. Your hands should be shoulder-width apart. Balance yourself on one dumbbell and feet and pull the other hand towards your body’s side.

Keep your hand raised for a few moments before bringing it down. Now repeat the same motion with the other hand and dumbbell.

6. Standing Dumbbell Fly

Standing Dumbbell Fly

Standing Dumbbell Fly is a good exercise to target your mid and upper chest and shoulders. It is one of the strength training exercises in which your elbow remains at a constant position while your hand and arm move through a curve. Standing Dumbbell Fly is usually an isolation exercise performed after big compound lifts such as incline press.

To start the exercise, maintain standing and hold weight in both hands while your palms face upward. Your feet should be shoulder-wide apart, and your arms should go down straight in front of your center. Stretch your arms up; keep them at your chest level and bring them to the sides. Meanwhile, your elbows should be straight.

Return to the initial position to complete one rep and repeat the exercise for the desired reps.


Shoulder exercises should be an essential part of your workout.

Building mobility and strength in your shoulders will also help you do other exercises. If you hope to sculpt down your shoulder, you must look at the exercises mentioned above.

These exercises are recommended for all gym-goers.

All these exercises use dumbbells which, according to research, elicit a greater degree of muscle activation even if the weight you lift is not much.


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