8 Reasons Your Shoulders Are NOT Growing (Science Based)

Find out exactly why you’re shoulders aren’t growing and break your plateau with these 8 tips. You’ll get wider, bigger, and stronger shoulders that have a 3D caped-like shoulder appearance.

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3-dimensional capped-like shoulders create a v-shape upper body making you appear leaner, more attractive, and more athletic. If you’re training your shoulders and they just don’t seem to want to grow you’re probably making one of three very common mistakes. First, you’re saving your shoulder exercises Too Late into your Workout. If your goal is to bulk up your shoulders start your arm workouts with shoulder exercises so that you’re fresh and can perform at your peak. Combining Shoulders, biceps, and triceps, into one workout can help you accomplish that better than a split where you would combine chest shoulders, and triceps. The second mistake is you’re focusing too much on the front delts and not enough on the side and rear delts. Most compound upper body exercises like Overhead presses and chest presses will target the front head of your shoulders. So on your shoulder days, you want to focus primarily on the side and rear delts rather than the front delt. Finally, the last mistake is letting your traps take over your shoulders. To prevent this, stretch your traps before training your shoulders and focus on pushing the dumbbells as far away from your body during lateral raises rather than just lifting the dumbbells straight up. 

3-dimensional capped-like shoulders help form a v-shaped appearance for your upper body making you appear leaner, more attractive, and more athletic. It also helps your arms look significantly more muscular when you have pronounced shoulders that appear to separate from the rest of the muscles in your arm. Unfortunately, many guys make the same common mistakes that prevent them from adding much mass to their shoulders at all, so today I want to go over 8 of the most common mistakes that are holding you back in terms of bulking up those shoulders. 

And the first one that I see all the time, is that most people don’t train through a full range of motion, especially when doing exercises like overhead presses. If you’re someone that actually does go all the way down next time you go to the gym take a look at how most people perform their barbell, dumbbell, and machine overhead presses. You’ll see that most people don’t lower the weight further than the point where their upper arms are parallel to the floor before pressing the weight back up. What you want to do instead is lower the weight all the way down until your hands at least at ear level and you can go even lower until the dumbbells are about the same height as your shoulders. This is beneficial because it’s specifically the lower part of the exercise that stimulates the delts the most. The upper part, on the other hand, is largely a function of the triceps. If we divide the motion of an overhead press into a lower, middle, and the upper portion (**) we can see that the triceps are heavily involved in locking out the weight during that upper portion, Not so much your shoulders. Your shoulders fire fully in the lower and middle portions of the exercise. On top of the fact that your shoulders are more active in the lower and middle section, research also indicates that in general training through a greater range of motion is better for muscle growth. For example, studies show that full squats cause more glute and adductor growth than partial squats and a full range of motion curls produce more bicep growth when compared to partial curls. (1)

Another common mistake is that you’re Focusing Too Much on the Front Delts But Not Enough on the Side and Rear Delts. This is usually done unintentionally and this issue can even affect advanced bodybuilders. Performing a disproportionate amount of volume for your front delts is common for two reasons. First, one of the staple shoulder exercises in everyone’s routine is the overhead press. Unfortunately, the overhead press as great of an exercise as it is focuses primarily on the front delts. Meanwhile, the side and especially the rear delts get much less activation. The second, and also the bigger issue is the fact that you already train your front delts quite a bit during all your horizontal pressing exercises like the dumbbell and barbell bench press. So when you train your chest you inadvertently also train the front part of your shoulders a lot. Even your rear delts will get recruited to a decent extent as you perform different pulling exercises, like pull-ups, rows, and especially Bent over high rows. But that’s not the case for the side delts, which are especially important for giving your shoulders that wide look. With the exception of upright rows which can actually lead to shoulder impingement, your side delts are not activated to a very significant extent from most..

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