Home » Training Articles » Shoulder Training – Key Rules & Sample Workouts

Shoulder Training – Key Rules & Sample Workouts

Start with Page 1 if you need Basic Anatomy, Articles and Videos.

Key Rules For Shoulder Training

  • The anterior deltoid gets enough attention during compound exercises like overhead press so doesn’t require isolation exercises
  • The lateral and posterior deltoids are often lagging and require isolation exercises
  • It’s fine to limit direct shoulder training to one session per week
  • Don’t sacrifice form for heavier weight – the idea is to feel the burn.
  • To elicit growth keep rest to 90 seconds or below for the isolation exercises
  • Shoulders love Time Under Tension, so perform exercises slowly without momentum
  • Control the eccentric portion of the lift as that’s where the majority of stimulation is achieved.

Sample Workouts

Workout 1: Muscle & Strength

  • Barbell Clean and Press – 3-4 sets of 5 reps (3 mins rest)
  • Dumbbell Wide Upright Row – 3 sets of 15-20 reps (90 secs rest)
  • Face Pull (Rope) – 4-5 sets of 10-15 reps (90 secs rest)
  • Dumbbell Shrugs – 3 sets of 8 reps (90 secs rest)

Workout 2: Branch Warren

  • Seated Military Press (Smith Machine) – 25 reps, 15 reps, 8 reps
  • Side Lateral Dumbbell Raises – 20 reps, 15 reps, 10 reps
  • Dumbbell Front Raises – 15 reps, 15 reps, 10 reps
  • Cable Upright Rows – 15 reps, 15 reps, 12 reps
  • Dumbbell Shoulder Press – 15 reps, 12 reps, 12 reps
  • NB: Increase the weight in every set

Workout 3: easyGym

  • Dumbbell Shoulder Press – 3 sets of 8-10 reps (2 mins rest)
  • Dumbbell Front Raises – 3 sets of 12-15 reps (90 secs rest)
  • Cable Lateral Raise – 3 sets of 12-15 reps (90 secs rest)
  • Machine Shoulder Press – 2 sets of 15-20 reps (90 secs rest)
  • Standing Rear Delt Fly – 2 sets of 12-15 reps (90 secs rest)
  • Front Lying Dumbbell Fly – 2 sets of 15-20 reps (90 secs rest)

Workout 4: CoachMag

  • A1 Overhead Press – 3 sets of 12 reps (10 secs)
  • A2 Push Press – 3 sets of 12 reps (10 secs)
  • A3 Barbell Shrug – 3 sets of 12 reps (90 secs)
  • NB: If you aren’t familiar with tri-sets, complete one set of exercises A1, A2 and A3 with 10 seconds rest, then take 90 seconds before repeating.
  • B1 Seated Arnold Press – 3 sets of 12 reps (10 secs)
  • B2 Seated Lateral Raise – 3 sets of 12 reps (10 secs)
  • B3 Bent-Over Reverse Fly – 3 sets of 12 reps (90 secs)
  • NB: as above

Workout 5: Overall Mass @ Bodybuilding.com

  • Standing Military Press – 2 sets of 6-8 reps, 2 sets of 8-10 reps
  • Seated Dumbbell Press – 2 sets of 8 reps, 2 sets of 12 reps
  • Front Dumbbell Raise – 2 sets of 8-10 reps, 1 set of 10-12 reps
  • Seated Bent-Over Rear Delt Raise – 2 sets of 8-10 reps, 1 set of 10-12 reps

Workout 6: Posterior Deltoid Focus @ Bodybuilding.com

  • T-Bar Row – 2 sets of 6-8 reps, 2 sets of 8-10 reps
  • Seated Bent-Over Rear Delt Raise – 2 sets of 8-10 reps, 1 set of 10-12 reps
  • Low-Pulley Deltoid Raise – 2 sets of 8 reps, 2 sets of 12 reps
  • Cable Rear Delt Fly – 3 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Seated Dumbbell Press – 10 sets of 10 reps
  • Lateral Raises – 5 sets of 10 reps
  • Bent-Over Rear Delt Flyes – 5 sets of 10 reps