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Dublin: 7 °C Monday 10 December, 2018

Looking for meaty, bulky shoulders? Try this session

It won’t happen overnight though.

YOU’LL NEED TO do this session at least twice a week for two months before you see any noticeable gains but bear with us… those Paul O’Connell shoulders won’t be long coming.

  • We suggest you pick three or four of the following five exercises, purely for variety in your workout.
  • We suggest a rep range of at least 10 and at most 20.
  • We suggest a rest between sets of between 60-90 seconds.

Exercise #1 Dumbbell shoulder press


Starting position: Stand upright with a dumbbell in each hand, your knees slightly bent and shoulder width apart. Grip the weights with your palms facing out and ‘sit’ them just on top of your shoulders — but not resting on your shoulders. There will be a 90 degree bend in your elbows.

Action: While exhaling, lift the weights up until they’re directly over your head. Make sure to keep your elbows slightly bent when performing each repetition.
Hold at the top of the range of motion before slowly lowering back down to the starting position as you inhale.

Exercise #2 Push ups (You knew this was coming)

Source: BuiltLean/YouTube

Starting position: Get down and into that position you’ve dreaded since you were under 12. You know the one straight back, tight core, arms in.

Action: Get down as low as you can, and back up. Use your full range of motion, take your time and get it right. Don’t fool yourself by saying you’ve done 50 push-ups, easy. Do 10 hard ones and start over.

If it’s too hard, take the pressure off by resting your knees on the floor.

Exercise #3 Seated dumbbell side laterals


Starting position: Grab a light weight for starters and hang your hands down by your side, the weight facing forward. Keep your back straight.

Action: Lift the weights to the ceiling but towards the top of the movement bring the weight forward slightly. The best way to remember how to do this properly is to have your thumbs facing downwards by the end of the exercise, as this demo shows.

Exercise #4 Lying rear deltoid raises


Starting position: While holding a dumbbell in each hand, lay with your chest down on a flat bench. Position the palms of the hands in a neutral manner (palms facing your torso) as you keep the arms extended with the elbows slightly bent.

Action: Now raise the arms to the side until your elbows are at shoulder height and your arms are roughly parallel to the floor as you exhale. Keep the contraction at the top of the movement just for a second. Slowly lower the dumbbells to the starting position as you inhale.

Exercise #5 Barbell military press

Source: ScottHermanFitness/YouTube

Starting position: Place a barbell about chest high on a squat rack. Select a light weight to start with to get accustomed to the movement. Grab the barbell wider than shoulder-width apart.

Slightly bend the knees and place the barbell on your collar bone – note, on FRONT of you, not behind.

Action: Lift the bar up over your head by locking your arms, exhaling throughout. Hold it at its highest point for as second before lowering, inhaling as you come down.

As annoying as the guy above sounds, he’s got good technique.

Looking for lean, ripped calves? Try this session

QUIZ: Which type of gym-goer are you?

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About the author:

Brian Canty

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