The shoulders contains four different muscle groups. Those are the front deltoid, the side deltoid, the rear deltoid, and the trapezius.
The shoulder muscles that most people are building are the side deltoid, which gives your shoulders that wide muscular look.
The shoulders are actually being stimulated in many upper body exercises, and because of this it’s important to not overdo the training of this muscle group. Over-training actaully has the opposite effect and creates fatigue instead of strong muscles. However, there are some exercises that are great if you want to gain muscular shoulders.
The shoulder press is an exercise that targets mainly the side deltoid, but it also gives a good work out for almost the entire upper body. Do 6-10 reps of the shoulder press and make it a habit to perform this exercise 2-3 times a week and you will see improvement quickly.
The starting position is to stand shoulder width apart with the knees slightly bent. Hold either a barbell or two dumbbells in your hands with the elbows bent so the weight is resting near the shoulders.
Then begin to lift the weight overhead until your arms are almost fully extended. Pause in the extended position for a moment before you slowly lower your arms down until your elbows are flush with your shoulders.
Lateral raises are another exercise that are great for building muscular shoulders. This is performed by standing shoulder width apart, knees slightly bent and with the arms hanging along the sides of your body with a dumbbell in each hand.
While inhaling, lift your arms away from your body all the way up to shoulder height so that your body is forming a T. Pause for a moment and slowly lower the weights down. Also this exercise is ultimately done in 6-10 reps and a few times a week. Make sure you alternate different exercises to get the best work out for you muscles.
These two exercises have their focus on the side deltoid even though as mentioned other parts of your body are being worked out simultaneously. If you perform them with consistency you will be able to gain strong muscular shoulders.
One of the shoulder muscle exercises that can give your shoulders a more balanced look is the reverse fly. Most people have strong front and side shoulder muscles but are lacking in the rear deltoid.
This shoulder muscle exercise is performed by using the machine known as the “pec dec” (usually for your chest), but in this case you sit in a reverse position. This way you are able to isolate your rear deltoids. Do 2 sets of 6 – 8 reps.
The last shoulder muscle group to work is the trapezius. These are the muscles by your neck and can really help you to look more muscular. To perform this exercise stand up straight with your arms at your side holding 2 heavy dumb-bells. As you inhale raise your shoulders up, as you exhale lower your shoulders. Because this is a smaller muscle group you want to do more reps. I recommend doing about 15 reps with weights that are heavy enough so that you feel tired after. Do 2 sets (your arms should be straight and only your shoulders move).