The 4-Week Dumbbell Workout Plan Part 4: Shoulders

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The 4-Week Dumbbell Workout Plan Part 4: Shoulders

To build robust shoulders you need to target them from multiple angles to activate all three heads of the deltoid muscle. Dumbbells are the perfect tool for the job. While barbell moves often require a spotter, and most machines fix your movement in one plane of motion, dumbbells require all your stabiliser muscles to work, force your core to hold everything together and offer plenty of versatility with every exercise.

PART3: The 4-Week Dumbbell Workout Plan Part 3: Legs And Abs

PART 2: The 4-Week Dumbbell Workout Plan Part 2: Arms

PART 1: The 4-Week Dumbbell Workout Plan Part 1: Chest And Back

Workout 4: Shoulders (Week 1)

1A Overhead press

Sets 4 Reps 10 Rest 0sec Tempo 2010

How to:

  • Stand tall holding a dumbbell in each hand at shoulder height.
  • Keeping your chest up, press the weights directly overhead until your arms are straight, then lower them back to the start.

Why: The key to building bigger, wider shoulders is to make these muscles work through their full range of motion, so make sure you lower the dumbbells all the way back to the start position at the end of each rep.

1B Lateral raise

Sets 4 Reps 10 Rest 60sec Tempo 2010

How to:

  • Stand with dumbbells by your sides and palms facing each other.
  • Lean forward slightly, then raise the weights to the sides, leading with your elbows.
  • Slowly lower them back to the start under control.

Why: This is a fantastic move for hitting your side delts – the section of the shoulder muscles that, when developed, creates a strong and wide upper body to help create the coveted V-shaped torso.

Related article:  Good Morning With Barbell

2A Arnold press

Sets 4 Reps 10 Rest 0sec Tempo 2010

How to:

  • Stand tall with a dumbbell in each hand at shoulder height with palms facing you.
  • Press the weights directly overhead, rotating your wrists as you lift, until your arms are straight, then lower them back to the start.

Why: It’s a similar lift to the straight overhead press, except your wrists rotate as you move the weights – and it’s this added movement that will fire up even more muscle fibres.

2B Upright row

Sets 4 Reps 10 Rest 60sec Tempo 2010

How to:

  • Stand tall holding a pair of dumbbells in front of your body with straight arms.
  • Keeping your chest up and leading with your elbows, row the weights up until your hands reach chin height.
  • Lower back to the start.

Why: Building bigger shoulders means you also need to work your traps, which is what this lift does brilliantly. Don’t go too heavy at first – it’s better to perform quality reps than max-weight ones – and never jerk the weights up and down.

3A Front raise

Sets 4 Reps 10 Rest 0sec Tempo 2010

How to:

  • Stand tall holding a pair of dumbbells in front of your body with straight arms.
  • Keeping your chest up and arms straight, raise the weights in front of you to shoulder hit.
  • Lower back to the start.

Why: This lift hits the front of your shoulders predominantly and, as with all shoulder moves, make sure you are controlling the weight at all times – it should never be controlling you. You can’t add muscle if you’re injured.

Related article:  Top 7 Chest Exercises to Build Muscle

3B Shrug

Sets 4 Reps 10 Rest 60sec Tempo 2010

How to:

  • Stand tall holding a dumbbell in each hand with straight arms.
  • Keeping your chest up, core braced and arms straight, shrug your shoulders.
  • Pause at the top, then lower the weights back to the start.

Why: It’s another great move for bigger traps, and the best thing about this move is that you can go heavy because its range of motion is so short. Keep everything tight and shrug the weights up powerfully to make it more effective.

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