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How To Build Shoulders

The shoulders may be one of the most overlooked muscles while training. Do not underestimate the advantage of having big shoulders - it is a muscle group you should train at least one a week!

This article will discuss the anatomy of the shoulders, effective exercises, and how to build big shoulders!

Shoulders may not be one of the “glory” muscles or a muscle you show off at the beach, but make no mistake, having well defined and huge shoulders can improve your physique incredibly.

By building your shoulders you will add mass to your arms and back while improving your proportions. To properly work your shoulders and understand the exercises you need to do, it is important you know the anatomy of the area.

The shoulder area is made up of around seven different muscles. In no particular order they are the: serratus anterior, pectorialis minor, subclavius, sternocleidomastoid, levator scapulae, rhomboid major/minor, trapezius, and deltoid. These muscles are responsible for moving your arm up and down, front to back, and anywhere in between.

They attach to the clavicle, scapula, or humerus and form what is commonly known as the shoulder cap. Technically speaking, all exercises that work your arms will work some of these muscles, however there are a few specific exercises for your shoulders that you will see massive gains from.

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The biggest muscle of the shoulder area is the deltoid, which is what most exercises are designed to hit. The deltoids compose almost the entire shoulder cap and in working them, you will have noticeably bigger shoulders. The most effective exercises for the deltoids are flys and presses.

Shoulder flys can be performed with either cables, bands, or dumbbells. Flys can be a tricky exercises because they can target different muscle groups depending on your arm position. For example, holding your arms lower will target your upper back more, while a higher arm position will target your rear deltoids.

Be sure to read up on proper fly technique and watch videos if you feel like you still can’t get it. If you find yourself stalling, try mixing up your form resistance or your body position. Flys can be done lying on a bench, standing up, seated or bent over!

The second great exercise for the shoulders is the shoulder press. As the name suggests, you will be pressing weight above your head. Usually, this is done using a machine, dumbbells, or a barbell.

Whether you perform presses standing or seated, you need to remember to keep your core tight and your back straight. Doing so will prevent injuries and encourage proper form. The shoulder press is an excellent exercise to try to add weight to every session - this will challenge your shoulders to the max!

Each shoulder workout should incorporate flys and presses, and to build muscle mass you need to increase intensity every session. In addition to increasing intensity, you need to fuel your body with the required macronutrients - protein, carbohydrates, and fats. Doing these two things, along with adequate recovery, will build muscle mass and encourage hypertrophy. But don’t take my word for it -  go out there and try it out!

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