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Friday, December 28, 2007

How To Build Big, Muscular Shoulders With Isolation Workout Techniques

When you're out in a muscle tee or tank top, your arms aren't the only body part on display. To look your best, you need well developed shoulders to top off your biceps and triceps. Isolation shoulder training is designed to force the targeted muscle, in this case your deltoids, to perform with minimal assistance from other muscle groups. Seated military presses and dumbbell presses are examples of isolation exercises that, when performed correctly, are very effective for building big, muscular delts.

On the other hand, compound exercises encourage simultaneous and coordinated work between various muscle groups. For example, deadlifts and Olympic lifts like the snatch and clean and jerk illustrate compound weightlifting movements that enlist some power from the shoulders. While these compound movements excel for sport specific conditioning and building overall body strength, isolation training will stimulate maximum growth of the deltoid area.

For example, I r! ecommend seated front and rear military presses for adding mass to the anterior and medial heads of the deltoids. Though these exercises are very effective when done properly, I frequently see beginning bodybuilders wasting valuable gym time doing them incorrectly. The most common mistake with seated military and/or dumbbell presses is jerking the weight overhead by arching the back or raising the hips from the seat. The whole point of sitting with lower back support to do these exercises is to force the shoulders - namely the anterior and medial deltoids - to power the weight upward without help from the rest of the body. Raising the hips and arching the back not only risks hyperextension of the spine or other injury, but it also defeats the exercise's intended effect.

Seated military and dumbbell presses are designed to build massive delts by isolating resistance on these muscles as much as possible with strict training technique. Such technique requires the control! led pressing of the weight overhead with your butt planted fir! mly on t he seat and your lower back pressed safely against a chair back. Jerking the weight overhead with bodyweight assistance deprives the delts of the work they need to grow and simply wastes time.

While no one would purposely waste time with ineffective workouts, many beginning bodybuilders just don't know how to properly perform isolation training for their delts. Additionally, such beginners are notoriously impatient and they often don't understand that building a truly awesome physique is a process, not an event. As a result, too many beginners start out working with poundage that is too heavy to handle without cheating on training technique.

It's true that progressively increasing your weight resistance in the military and dumbbell presses is essential to building big, muscular delts. But you shouldn't try to work with more weight than you can lift naturally and with proper training technique. Remember, you're not in competition with anyone besides yourself when ! it comes to maximizing your bodybuilding potential. And the only person who loses if you cheat on your isolation training technique is you! So don't worry about impressing or keeping up with anybody else - especially if you're just starting out. Use safe amounts of weight with proper technique and you'll soon build the big, muscular shoulders that you deserve.

Mark G. Winston, "The Master Gunslinger," is author of the ground-breaking training manual, "GO For Your GUNS - 7 Simple Secrets to AWESOME ARMS." He has also created, a bodybuilding and fitness website dedicated entirely to helping you build big, muscular arms. Mark's forthcoming book will be jammed with workouts and training techniques to help you build the big, muscular arms that you deserve! To learn about the GO For Your GUNS bodybuilding system and get free arm training tips that really work, visit

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