There is a little known trick among body builders: if you develop your shoulders, you give the impression of a broader chest and wider back. A strong pair of shoulders attracts the eyes of people and even if your chest is not where you’d like it to be, it will have the look of being bigger.
So, how do you get shoulders that can help you compete at a higher level and gain more interest at the beach? Here are a few exercises that will help:
Military Press: This timeless exercise can be performed with a barbell or dumbbells. In an upright seated position on a bench, grab hold of the bar with your hands shoulder-width apart. Keeping the bar behind your head, raise it from shoulder height to a fully extended upright position. Lower it slowly to the base of your neck and repeat the upright motion. Start off by doing 3 sets of reps of 10, 8 and 6. Adjust the weight as needed.
Dumbbell Flys: This exercise will not only strengthen the shoulders but also help define your latissimus dorsi muscles (or lats). Take a pair of dumbbells and stand with your feet shoulder width apart. Starting with the dumbbells at your side slowly raise each simultaneously until both are extended outwards, parallel to your hips. You can switch up and extend the dumbbells straight out and up until parallel with your shoulders. Lower the dumbbells and repeat.
Shrugs: A good way to develop the shoulders, as well as the trapezius muscles (or traps), is to perform shoulder shrugs. Again, this exercise can be done with a barbell or dumbbells. With a barbell at your mid-section, slowly raise the weight using only your shoulders to perform a shrugging motion. Resist the urge to use your biceps or back since you only want to target your shoulder and traps. Pause at the top of the shrug and then slowly lower the weight back to your mid-section.