Execution Stand with your feet apart and your knees slightly bent. Hold the dumbbells in a neutral grip (palms facing the body) with your elbows partially bent and on either side of your body. Lift your arms straight out to the side, raising your elbows to the level of your hands and shoulders. At the top of the movement, the palms of your hands should face the floor. Lower the dumbbells in a controlled movement. Inhale during the first third of the raise (or before starting the raise in heavy sets) and exhale as you lower the weights. Comments This is a good exercise for the deltoid, especially for the middle section of the muscle. It will help you broaden your shoulders.
If you raise the dumbbells a few degrees higher than horizontal (never with heavy weights), you will call upon the trapezius and adjacent muscles (the deltoid only lifts the arms to around 90º). You can begin the movement with your hands in front of your body to complete a set or if you are using a heavy weight. If you do the exercise sitting down, you will effectively eliminate any momentum provided by the legs and torso. The biceps (especially the long head) does its fair share of the work in this exercise, accounting for up to 20-25% of the overall effort. You should take this into account when planning your training routine.
Common mistakes: rocking your body to gain momentum; turning the forearm up when doing the raise; lifting the hands but not the elbows, or vice versa; turning the forearm down at the end of the movement; too long or too short a range of motion with too much weight; allowing the weights to drop after completing the lift; bending the elbows too much (especially with heavy weights) or keeping them too straight; doing the exercise too fast; and not lifting both sides the same.
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