The Press: A must for Broad Well Developed Shoulders and Muscular Upper Body


The press is a great shoulder builder and developer. The press movement requires total upper and abdominal strength and power. This movement builds power and thickness across the whole upper body. A must have for a classic physique.

I love performing all my presses without a support. Doing so develops the upper back, rear delts, traps, abdominals etc. It can be done unilaterally or bilaterally. Regardless of how you choose to do it, the elbow positioning in relation to the body matters and affects what parts of the deltoids get emphasized.

Be aware of how your hand and forearm are positioned/angled as you press going up and back to the start, as a lot of trainees allow their hands to cave inward towards their body which puts the tension onto their joints/bones of the elbow and will cause issues in the short and long term.

The forearm should be relatively perpendicular to the floor in the stretched position and as you press upward. Think of moving from the upper arm which is from the shoulder to the elbow and not the hands because the shoulder attaches to the upper arm.

Another important tip is to focus on bringing the bicep to the ear so you can achieve a full shortening of the deltoids that provides a great deal of tension in the targeted muscle.

As always, lift how you want look. Good posture, pull the abdominals in, good head positioning, etc. Do not just move, contract muscles and look amazing doing it.

Steve Reeves and George London Standing Press
Image: Steve Reeves Performing a Standing Press with George London
Steve Reeves Standing Barbell Press
Image: Steve Reeves Standing Barbell Press
Steve Reeves Standing Barbell Press 1940s
Image: Steve Reeves Standing Barbell Press (1940’s)
Steve Reeves Standing Barbell Press with Woman
Image: Steve Reeves Standing Barbell Press with Woman
Steve Reeves Standing Press
Image: Steve Reeves Standing Dumbbell Press
Reg Park Seated Alternating Press
Image: Reg Park Seated Alternating Press
Reg Park Standing Barbell Press
Image: Reg Park Standing Barbell Behind the Neck Press
Reg Park Standing Press
Image: Reg Park Standing Dumbbell Press
Rachel McLish Unilateral Standing Press
Image: Rachel McLish Standing Unilateral Dumbbell Press
Gladys Portugues Seated Press
Image: Gladys Portugues Seated Dumbbell Press
John Grimek Standing Alternating Press
Image: John Grimek Standing Alternating Dumbbell Press
Unknown Woman Unilateral Standing Press
Image: Unknown Woman Unilateral Standing Barbell Press
Bosco Standing Press by Harry B Paschall
Image: Bosco Illustration Standing Barbell Press by Harry B. Paschall
Sergio Oliva Performing the Seated Barbell Press
Image: Sergio Oliva performing the Seated Barbell Military Press

 

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