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  1. #1
    Novice boyka's Avatar
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    How to get big shoulders?
    Hey guys,

    what do you find to be the best exercises to get really broad large shoulders? my skeletal shape is narrow shoulders so I am trying to pack as much muscles on the shoulders as possible. Anyone have any experience with this?

  2. #2
    Motivated DaHurt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by boyka View Post
    Hey guys,

    what do you find to be the best exercises to get really broad large shoulders? my skeletal shape is narrow shoulders so I am trying to pack as much muscles on the shoulders as possible. Anyone have any experience with this?
    Of course the bread and butter of shoulder growth is the barbell shoulder press, or dumbbell variation...

    It sounds like you're really interested in hitting the medial delts to give the illusion of width. For medial delts I like to do DB side lateral drop sets like this:

    10x40 -> 10x30 -> 10x20, which is one set, then I do 3 sets.

    Then I go into WIDE GRIP upright rows with either a barbell or cable...usually 3-4 sets of 12-15 reps.

    For rear delts I do face pulls, rear DB raises, and rear pec deck flyes.

    I don't target front delts too much because mine are already over-developed relative to my chest, but front raises and arnold presses do the trick for these

    Hope this helps!
    donjob likes this.

  3. #3
    Novice boyka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaHurt View Post
    Of course the bread and butter of shoulder growth is the barbell shoulder press, or dumbbell variation...

    It sounds like you're really interested in hitting the medial delts to give the illusion of width. For medial delts I like to do DB side lateral drop sets like this:

    10x40 -> 10x30 -> 10x20, which is one set, then I do 3 sets.

    Then I go into WIDE GRIP upright rows with either a barbell or cable...usually 3-4 sets of 12-15 reps.

    For rear delts I do face pulls, rear DB raises, and rear pec deck flyes.

    I don't target front delts too much because mine are already over-developed relative to my chest, but front raises and arnold presses do the trick for these

    Hope this helps!
    helps a ton! thanks bro

  4. #4
    Steroidologist clsmth700's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaHurt View Post
    Of course the bread and butter of shoulder growth is the barbell shoulder press, or dumbbell variation...

    It sounds like you're really interested in hitting the medial delts to give the illusion of width. For medial delts I like to do DB side lateral drop sets like this:

    10x40 -> 10x30 -> 10x20, which is one set, then I do 3 sets.

    Then I go into WIDE GRIP upright rows with either a barbell or cable...usually 3-4 sets of 12-15 reps.

    For rear delts I do face pulls, rear DB raises, and rear pec deck flyes.

    I don't target front delts too much because mine are already over-developed relative to my chest, but front raises and arnold presses do the trick for these

    Hope this helps!
    well said !

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaHurt View Post
    Of course the bread and butter of shoulder growth is the barbell shoulder press, or dumbbell variation...

    It sounds like you're really interested in hitting the medial delts to give the illusion of width. For medial delts I like to do DB side lateral drop sets like this:

    10x40 -> 10x30 -> 10x20, which is one set, then I do 3 sets.

    Then I go into WIDE GRIP upright rows with either a barbell or cable...usually 3-4 sets of 12-15 reps.

    For rear delts I do face pulls, rear DB raises, and rear pec deck flyes.

    I don't target front delts too much because mine are already over-developed relative to my chest, but front raises and arnold presses do the trick for these

    Hope this helps!
    All good info there. Only thing i would say is on those WIDE GRIP upright rows ONLY go as high and ur nipple line. I saw Charles Glass teach them this way. Reason he gave was any higher and u bring in the Traps. Since you want the illusion of wide shoulers you need to target the shoulders. My 2cents.

  6. #6
    Amateur Bodybuilder Diced's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mnmvilla View Post
    All good info there. Only thing i would say is on those WIDE GRIP upright rows ONLY go as high and ur nipple line. I saw Charles Glass teach them this way. Reason he gave was any higher and u bring in the Traps. Since you want the illusion of wide shoulers you need to target the shoulders. My 2cents.
    Correct anything above 90 degrees of the shoulder begins to recruit the traps !

  7. #7
    Amateur Bodybuilder Diced's Avatar
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    thats also why its sometimes not nessary to move thru a full ROM with the overhead press , check out ron colemans shoulder press its only a very small movement really isolates the shoulders. best of luck !

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    Super Baller Ass Novice sealevel's Avatar
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    Dang, I just looked up his shoulder routine and watched a video. He uses really short motions on his dumb bell press but it is hard to argue a dude's logic with shoulders that freaking big. I might try that out myself

  9. #9
    Novice tkiller's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaHurt View Post
    Of course the bread and butter of shoulder growth is the barbell shoulder press, or dumbbell variation...

    It sounds like you're really interested in hitting the medial delts to give the illusion of width. For medial delts I like to do DB side lateral drop sets like this:

    10x40 -> 10x30 -> 10x20, which is one set, then I do 3 sets.

    Then I go into WIDE GRIP upright rows with either a barbell or cable...usually 3-4 sets of 12-15 reps.

    For rear delts I do face pulls, rear DB raises, and rear pec deck flyes.

    I don't target front delts too much because mine are already over-developed relative to my chest, but front raises and arnold presses do the trick for these

    Hope this helps!
    Looks like good advice!!!

  10. #10
    Oregon Coast Duner BoBoy's Avatar
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    Dahurts got it down . I'm a big drop-set user too, sometimes starting heavy and dropping the weight to maintain a certain rep range can build strength , and strength in return builds muscle . ~Bo

  11. #11
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    I had the same problem....really small shoulders (mainly because when i was younger and had to miss a gym session for the week i would leave shoulders out).

    But i worked on them hard and now they are almost my best asset.

    I work them twice a week with this routine that i found from Antoine Vaillant but changed the rep ranges as i feel my body best responds to 8 - 10 reps:
    DB Rear Delt Flyes - 5 x 8-10
    Reverse Pec Dec - 4 x 12
    DB Seated Lat Raises - 5 x 8 - 10
    Machine Lat Raises - 4 x 12
    DB Shoulder Press - 4 x 8 - 10

    IMO, rear delts are very under-rated

  12. #12
    Dungeon Dweller Down Unda Thunda's Avatar
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    Triple Raises will smash the delts period!!

  13. #13
    Amateur Bodybuilder Diced's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BLM20 View Post
    I had the same problem....really small shoulders (mainly because when i was younger and had to miss a gym session for the week i would leave shoulders out).

    But i worked on them hard and now they are almost my best asset.

    I work them twice a week with this routine that i found from Antoine Vaillant but changed the rep ranges as i feel my body best responds to 8 - 10 reps:
    DB Rear Delt Flyes - 5 x 8-10
    Reverse Pec Dec - 4 x 12
    DB Seated Lat Raises - 5 x 8 - 10
    Machine Lat Raises - 4 x 12
    DB Shoulder Press - 4 x 8 - 10

    IMO, rear delts are very under-rated
    that shits nasty, but everyones body is different id snap all kinds of shit in my shoulder if i tryed that .

  14. #14
    Amateur Bodybuilder Diced's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sealevel View Post
    Dang, I just looked up his shoulder routine and watched a video. He uses really short motions on his dumb bell press but it is hard to argue a dude's logic with shoulders that freaking big. I might try that out myself
    thats right, the size can be put down to drugs, but the point im making is his been lifting for a loongggg time injury free well shoulder injury free meaning his doing the little things right. thier is no need for a full rom when doing over head presses. another guilty movement for the shoulder is dips . thier shoulder destroyers right thier . great inner pec builder tho . u just gotta fluff around with exersises before u go all out on them feel them out see if ur body agrees .

  15. #15
    Motivated DaHurt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BLM20 View Post
    I had the same problem....really small shoulders (mainly because when i was younger and had to miss a gym session for the week i would leave shoulders out).

    But i worked on them hard and now they are almost my best asset.

    I work them twice a week with this routine that i found from Antoine Vaillant but changed the rep ranges as i feel my body best responds to 8 - 10 reps:
    DB Rear Delt Flyes - 5 x 8-10
    Reverse Pec Dec - 4 x 12
    DB Seated Lat Raises - 5 x 8 - 10
    Machine Lat Raises - 4 x 12
    DB Shoulder Press - 4 x 8 - 10

    IMO, rear delts are very under-rated
    Good routine, but I'd play around with the order a little. Instead of doing all my rear movements, all my medial movements, and then front, I'd to rear-medial-front and then go back to the rear and work my way forward again...keep all three heads FULL of blood for most of the workout

  16. #16
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    I had this same question OP. awesome info in here

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    Quote Originally Posted by Diced View Post
    that shits nasty, but everyones body is different id snap all kinds of shit in my shoulder if i tryed that .
    Yeah thats just it. I find i respond more to heaps of volume rather than intense heavy lifting.

    So the reason i get away without snapping anything is because i dont lift very heavy haha

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    Quote Originally Posted by DaHurt View Post
    Good routine, but I'd play around with the order a little. Instead of doing all my rear movements, all my medial movements, and then front, I'd to rear-medial-front and then go back to the rear and work my way forward again...keep all three heads FULL of blood for most of the workout
    Had never thought about doing that but seems like a very good idea, ill give it a try next shoulder workout.

  19. #19
    Amateur Bodybuilder Diced's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BLM20 View Post
    Yeah thats just it. I find i respond more to heaps of volume rather than intense heavy lifting.

    So the reason i get away without snapping anything is because i dont lift very heavy haha
    Brother u dont EVER get away with snapping , But im similiar heavy overhead lifts cant do em i can but it feels lik shit. Im just like my shoulders respond to anything basically and very little to .same with my traps .

  20. #20
    RUI-Products Supporter Santaklaus's Avatar
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    I have super human retard strength in my shoulders and incline bench press.. Strongest part of my body, leaving out legs of course... My shoulder routine lately has been:

    4 sets of 12 Barbell shoulder press-225 lbs
    4 sets of 12 upright rows 185 lbs
    4 sets of 12, each lateral raises then right into Front lateral raises for each set(total of 24 reps in a row each set)
    4 sets of either rear flys or bent over rear delt cable raises
    Sometimes sprinkle in a few shrugs if I feeling saucey, 405 lb shrugs 6-8 reps each set

    Shoulders in my opinion should have there own day.

    That's obviously my routine for reps not for maxing and I'm loving it lately.. I very rarely Max my shoulders now a days.

  21. #21
    Novice TripDaddy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Santaklaus View Post
    I have super human retard strength in my shoulders and incline bench press.. Strongest part of my body, leaving out legs of course... My shoulder routine lately has been:

    4 sets of 12 Barbell shoulder press-225 lbs
    4 sets of 12 upright rows 185 lbs
    4 sets of 12, each lateral raises then right into Front lateral raises for each set(total of 24 reps in a row each set)
    4 sets of either rear flys or bent over rear delt cable raises
    Sometimes sprinkle in a few shrugs if I feeling saucey, 405 lb shrugs 6-8 reps each set

    Shoulders in my opinion should have there own day.

    That's obviously my routine for reps not for maxing and I'm loving it lately.. I very rarely Max my shoulders now a days.
    holy huge shoulder weights batman!

    btw, DaHurt's advice is great earlier in the post. I also like cable side lateral raises.

  22. #22
    Junior Bodybuilder gadogs83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Santaklaus View Post
    I have super human retard strength in my shoulders and incline bench press.. Strongest part of my body, leaving out legs of course... My shoulder routine lately has been:

    4 sets of 12 Barbell shoulder press-225 lbs
    4 sets of 12 upright rows 185 lbs
    4 sets of 12, each lateral raises then right into Front lateral raises for each set(total of 24 reps in a row each set)
    4 sets of either rear flys or bent over rear delt cable raises
    Sometimes sprinkle in a few shrugs if I feeling saucey, 405 lb shrugs 6-8 reps each set

    Shoulders in my opinion should have there own day.

    That's obviously my routine for reps not for maxing and I'm loving it lately.. I very rarely Max my shoulders now a days.
    definetely with ya on the shrugs brother. one of my favorites. we usually do 3 sets of 20 with 405 lol. love em!

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Diced View Post
    Brother u dont EVER get away with snapping , But im similiar heavy overhead lifts cant do em i can but it feels lik shit. Im just like my shoulders respond to anything basically and very little to .same with my traps .
    Lets just say i was stupid with that comment

    What i meant to say was....Fortunantly ive been lucky enough to not snap anything!

    Im with you on the traps; mine seem to grow even when im sleeping

  24. #24
    Pro Bodybuilder Harnold's Avatar
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    just my opinion but I think medial delts are the key to wide shoulder appearance. obviously you want posterior and anterior development as well, but I always had good luck doing side laterals with dumbells or cables, followed immediately by bent over laterals for the rear delts. I'm with you guys on the front delts getting enough during chest training.
    I also hate to see people swinging the weight up while doing lateral raises. you don't need to go heavy, go for the deep burn, and watch those shoulders take shape.
    old time pro Larry Scott was known for having narrow shoulders, and wrote some good articles on training for these..
    Bullseye Forever and Diced like this.

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