It’s not too late to improve how you look and feel in your summer clothes, specifically bathing suits, tank tops, and sleeveless dresses for the ladies. A summer wardrobe means baring the shoulders to the world, making this the perfect time to sculpt your shoulders with deltoid exercises. The deltoids are the smallest major muscle group and they don’t always get the attention they deserve from weight training programs. Use this summer exercise routine for defined and appealing shoulders.
Dumbbell front raises
Dumbbell front raises sculpt the front shoulders, known as the anterior or front deltoids. The motion of this exercise is very simple but don’t let that fool you. This exercise will fatigue the shoulders quickly, especially if you don’t do shoulder exercises regularly.
Grasp a pair of dumbbells and stand up tall. With your arms straight and the weights resting against your thighs, step your feet hip-width apart and bend your knees to get into a firm stance. Next, raise your arms straight upward until they are above shoulder level. Slowly lower your arms back to your legs to complete one dumbbell front raise. Select weights light enough so that you can complete 10 to 12 reps.
Dumbbell lateral raises
Dumbbell lateral raises sculpt the side shoulders, known as the lateral or medial deltoids. Just like how raising your arms forward targets the front of the shoulders, raising your arms to your sides works the sides of the shoulders.
Grip a dumbbell in each hand and stand tall with your arms against your sides. Use the same sturdy stance for this exercise that you used for the front raises. Raise your arms up and out to your sides until they are parallel to the floor. Slowly lower the arms back to your sides to complete one dumbbell lateral raise. Do 10 to 12 reps.
Barbell rear deltoids rows
Hitting the back part of the shoulders is not as simple as the front and sides because the arms don’t swing back the same way they can do forwards or to the sides. An exercise called barbell rear deltoid rows sculpts the back of the shoulders, also known as the rear or posterior deltoids.
To do a barbell rear deltoids row, hold a barbell with your hands shoulder-width apart in front of you with your arms straight and against the front of your body. Step your feet shoulder width apart and bend forward at the hips. Let the barbell hang toward the floor and in line with your chest. Pull the barbell up toward your chest. Your elbows should bend and flair out to the sides. This is different from a row that targets your back where your arms stay near your torso. Lower the weight toward the floor until your arms are straight again. This completes one barbell rear deltoids row. Do 10 to 12 reps.
After finishing all three exercises, take a short break and then repeat.
Work up to three or four sets. Because the deltoids are a small muscle group and they assist with other activities, you need only do a shoulder workout twice a week to see results. Add these three exercises onto existing workouts or do them as a mini workout independently. Either way, you’ll see sexier and more defined shoulders quickly, in time for pool parties, trips to the beach, and days when it is too hot for sleeves.
About the Author
Sarka-Jonae Miller is a personal trainer, massage therapist, novelist, and blogger. Her work has appeared in the Post-Standard newspaper, on NaturalNews.com, on AskTheTrainer.com, and on the New York and Washington Home & Garden online magazines. Get more health and wellness tips on Sarka’s Natural Healing Tips blog, Facebook page, or on Twitter. Sarka-Jonae’s debut novel, Between Boyfriends, recently hit #9 on Amazon’s best seller list for humorous fiction. East County Magazine calls it “the ultimate chick-lit read — a light-hearted romp.” Read free stories by Sarka on Wattpad, including a preview of Between Boyfriends. Learn more about Sarka on her author website and her women’s fiction book blog.