Strong shoulder development has often been recognized in the fitness industry as a respectable and sexy feature of professional bodybuilders. Separate from the forearms, torso, back and abdominals, the deltoids are undoubtedly one of the most difficult areas of the body to train.
Many professionals have found that due to the consistent work of the deltoids muscles on a daily basis they are highly unresponsive to training and muscle growth as they had geared more for endurance than for strength. The human forearm is a part of a highly complex fiber network capable of a variety of finger, hand and wrist motions. Similarly the deltoids are constantly at work with every motion of the arms while lifting simple objects or even interlocking the hands above the head.
However unlike the deltoids, the pectoral muscle group when exposed to strength training exercises such as the squat and bench press, are highly receptive resulting in muscle growth and development.
Bodybuilders and trainers have found that developing the deltoids muscles is determined by the physique, type of muscle fiber and muscular mass of the individual as each person is characterized by an individual muscular growth rate when exposed to a training routine. Thus some bodybuilders have been able to perform standard bench presses resulting in massive growth rates in their pectoral muscles while excessive training in calf raises results in variably small developed calves. One of the training exercises used recently by a number of fitness trainers to increase deltoids is the highly criticized Seated Behind-The-Neck Press often referred to as BNP Exercise styles. The Olympic lifting BNP style press observes the individual positioning the hands close together, elbows under while performing a high frequency press creating a back bend locking out at the climax of the lift. This style has been used in strength training to exercise using much heavier weights through a quick lift. However there has been no conclusive fact to the amount of training imposed on the deltoid muscles.
Another popularly used style of BNP is the military or bodybuilding press commonly found in many of today’s bodybuilding magazines. This style of BNP observes the bodybuilder maintaining a medium to wide grip on the bar. This wide grip allows the individual to position the elbows towards the side placing a stress overload on the deltoids muscle group. Lifting using the military press does not require the lifter to lockout the elbows, which allows an additional amount of stress to be placed on the central region of the deltoids.
The Dumbbell Laterals has been often referred to as the number one exercise used by professional bodybuilders and fitness trainers to actively develop the medial deltoid heads. This exercise is most effective when performed within a seated position. Successfully isolating the deltoid muscle medial head is often a difficult task due to easily targeted the secondary muscle groups. Many bodybuilders recommend individuals not to kick outward with the legs, swing the arms or lean forwards when beginning the exercise nor leaning backward when completing the rep. During the exercise both dumbbells should be held with an overhand grip without the use of the thumbs with the dumbbells positioned slightly off the center. This position creates a head start in what is commonly known as the “pouring the spout” effect. Here the individual creates a proper posture by maintaining an internal rotation as the deltoids at the front of the body are often found to be much stronger. At the beginning of the exercise, each rep is observed by the individual positioning the dumbbells just above the upper thighs and in front of the body palms facing each other. By locking the wrists together the elbows are then bent spaying them to the sides of the individual. This completes one rep.