By Brandon Pieterse

There is no magic formula or secret exercise to building the deltoids. Yes some people may have longer clavicles, giving them a naturally wider look. However this does not give them big boulder shoulders. If you want big powerful shoulders, you have to earn them.

Follow these guidelines to really help improve your shoulder training.

Split the shoulders in to three heads

Rather than trying to train posterior, medial and anterior deltoid in one go, split them into three focused workouts. Each head of the deltoid has the same attachment site, the deltoid tuberosity of the humerous, but they all have a different origin point. With various origin points comes various actions that each head of the shoulder will perform. The shoulder performs a number of different actions, so why would we want to train them all together? Better to try and optimise the training for each head, milking them for all they are worth, and allowing them to really grow into boulders.

  • Anterior head originates on the lateral third of the clavicle, meaning its action is to flex and internally rotate the arm.
  • Medial head originates on the acromion of the scapular, giving it the action of abduction of the arm.
  • Posterior head originates on the spine of the scapular, this allows for extension of the arm and lateral rotation of the arm.

Place the shoulder in a safe position

The shoulders have a large range of movement, being a ball and socket joint. But this doesn’t mean they are invincible. You will often hear people having shoulder issues, injuries, impingements etc. This is why when training shouders, we want to ensure the joint is placed in a safe position.

A safe position allows you to put a large amount of load through the joint without causing pain or discomfort.

So in conclusion, find the particular area of the shoulder you wish to work, place the shoulder in the best position to get maximal muscular contraction, and exploit that movement for everything it’s worth.

Remember, the shoulder can recover very quickly and be put through a lot of work due to its massive range of movement in everyday life. Use this guide to train the shoulders and I promise you they will grow!

About the author

I have had a passion for fitness from a young age. I was involved in sport throughout my younger years and it has continued to play a massive role in my life. As a personal trainer, I am looking to improve my clients overall health and wellness through training and nutrition. I studied through the HFPA Academy in South Africa in exercise science, sports conditioning, applied nutrition and training. Now that I am living in the UK, I am furthering my education through Shredded By Science and will continue to develop my knowledge in order to continuously provide the best quality of service to my clients.