Build Big Boulder Shoulders

Best Exercises to Build Boulder Shoulders

Think you’ve got small shoulders and want to look and feel bigger? It’s not uncommon for guys to feel insecure because of their slight shoulders. To broaden them and create the appearance that you are masculine and capable of crushing things you will need to start doing some serious exercises. In this article we’re going to explore the exercises you can do to make your shoulders explode and give you the “boulder shoulder” look!

Most shoulder exercises are going to be done with weights, but there are a few workouts that can be done via body weight resistance. Body weight training is the safest and most holistically beneficial way to exercise the muscles. However, the longer you can hold this workout the more the shoulders are going to be worked and consequently broadened. Nobody wants to look like a limp noodle.

First Things First

If your purpose is to build big, broader shoulders as well as strengthen the muscles, then your fast track destination should be to a gym. Among the best workouts that you can do to strengthen your muscles and build and broaden the mass in your shoulders are lateral raises, seated shoulder press, and military presses. These exercises are the most common exercises that you should mainly focus on if your main aim is to get rounded shoulders with serious strength and power.

When first practising the handstand you will probably have a hard time balancing because the muscles in your upper body are weak and not capable of supporting your weight. After a few attempts though, you will be able to hold yourself longer and longer each time.

Body Weight Exercises

We’ve already mentioned body weight exercises – the great thing about these is that it affects every muscle in the body. Weight training is an excellent way to perform isometric exercises or even compound exercises, but body weight resistance works the body to the core. When working with body weight movements, the muscles in the core must tense up to provide stability, thus causing thin waists and tight abs.

Believe it or not, but performing a handstand uses a lot of effort and strength from your shoulders, which is why this is a great way to build your shoulder muscles. When first practising the handstand you will probably have a hard time balancing because the muscles in your upper body are weak and not capable of supporting your weight. After a few attempts though, you will be able to hold yourself longer and longer each time.

Another simple exercise that can help you build your shoulders is rotating your arm as you hanging freely. This is done by leaning on a bench while standing so that you will be facing the ground. Make sure your shoulder and back are relaxed, let your arm dangle from your body and make simple counter-clockwise and clockwise rotations of your arm while dangling.

Shoulder Exercises

Lateral Raise

lateral-raiseThe starting position for this exercise is with a dumbbell in each hand, arms by your side with palms facing towards your body. Keep your core and back straight and prevent yourself from arching your back or leaning forward. Good posture is very important to stop yourself from causing an injury.

Now in the starting position, begin to raise your arms until they are parallel with the floor.  You should aim to keep your arms as straight as possible but without locking them completely – make sure you have a slight bend at the elbow.

Once your arms are parallel with the floor, hold the position for a second or two before beginning to lower back to the starting position.

Remember to breathe slowly during the movement, exhale on the way up and inhale on the way back down. Hold the finishing position with arms raised for a second or two before bringing them back down. Repeat the exercise for your chosen repetition count, then rest before starting again.

Seated Shoulder Press

imagesAlso known as the “dumbbell shoulder press”, this exercise focus on raw static shoulder power. Being in the seated position means you can’t harness the energy from other body movements, this is purely a shoulder lifting exercise.

Sitting on a military bench that has a back support, make sure your back is engaged with the back rest at all times to prevent arching at the core. This is often seen with people trying to lift weights that are too heavy and can result in serious back injury and strain. You should have a dumbbell in each hand which you can no raise and rest on your thighs.

Raise the dumbbells to your shoulders so your elbow is bent at almost 45 degrees. If needed you can use your legs to assist in propelling or raise the dumbbells to this position. At this point your palms should be facing forward and you’re ready to to start the lifting or pushing movement.

Push the dumbbells up above your head until they touch at the top, hold for a second or two then slowly bring them back down to your shoulder level again. This is one repetition which you should repeat for your chosen rep count.

Remember to exhale whilst pushing the dumbbells up and inhale as you bring them back down again whilst always keeping your back engaged with the back support of the bench.

Military Press

military-pressThe military press or “standing military press” is similar to the seated shoulder press, only this time you’re in a standing position using one single (Olympic / Barbell) bar as opposed to dumbbells.

It’s best to use a squat rack for this exercise. Place the bar at shoulder height but make sure you’ll able to lift the bar off the rack. Select your weights then hold the back with a pronated grip, which means your palms are facing upward the sky.

Lift the barbell off the rack by placing it on your collar bone and resting at the top of your chest. Step backwards and be sure to keep your core tensed to prevent any bending or arching. Also, ensure to keep your feet shoulder width apart.

Now that you’re in the starting position, press the barbell upwards until above your head and your arms locked out. This is your finishing position. Try to keep you back and core completely tight and your legs straight. The focus should purely be on the shoulders and the pressing movement. You can begin to use your legs to assist with the lift once your shoulders begin to tire….as they will.

Remember as always to exhale on the way up and inhale as the barbell is lowered back to your check position. Keeping correct form will prevent any injuries and ensure you’re exercising the right muscle groups.