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How to Properly Perform Dumbbell Press To Work Your Shoulders

Updated on January 28, 2014

This exercise is a great workout for the Deltoids (shoulders). It particularly works the medial delts more so than the front (anterior) or back (posterior) deltoids shoulder muscles. Dumbbell press also stimulates the triceps, serratus anterior and upper trapezius during the exercise. A good shoulder workout that can be added to most weekly workout routines.

How To Perform The Shoulder Press

1. Begin by sitting on a bench and maintain good posture with a straight back.

2. Grasps the two dumbbells with an overhand grip

3. Bring the dumbbells up to shoulder height and move them so your palms are facing forward

4. Press the weights up into and straighten your arms by extending vertically

5. Inhale during the lifts and exhale when the movement is completed.

My dumbells
My dumbells | Source

Considerations for Dumbbell Presses

Although the workout above mentions performing the exercise while sitting such as on a bench. It can be more beneficial to perform the exercise while standing. Standing requires more energy and muscle stimulation to help stabilize your body throughout the movement. However, sitting helps people by ensuring they do not allow their spine to become hyper-extended to occur during lifting.

You can also perform this exercise with your palms facing each other instead of facing forward.

Lastly you can also of course use one dumbbell at a time to lift. This is great for increasing rest time in between while not stopping completely and helps mix it up a bit.

The video also shows a slightly off version of the Arnold Press. However pay attention to his form on just the shoulder press. Enjoy

Remember to warm up first before exercising and ensure you always workout within your limits.


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    • Sean Evans profile image

      Sean Evans 6 years ago from GTA

      Thanks for the replay sisterofdummy and Akune. Glad as always to see someone utilize it.

    • sisterofdummy profile image

      sisterofdummy 6 years ago

      Thank YOU for the help!

    • akune profile image

      akune 6 years ago from Surrey, England, United Kingdom

      Thanks. Must show my son.

    • sisterofdummy profile image

      sisterofdummy 6 years ago

      Thank you for this very informative hub! I, too, have had mental debates on how to hold a dumbell properly. Thanks to you, that discussion in myself has ended!