Dumbbell Shoulder Press

Training Details Dumbbell Shoulder Press

  • Primary Muscle
    Front Delt, Middle Delt
  • Secondary Muscle
    Triceps, Inner Abs
  • Equipment
  • Level

Why Should You do Dumbbell Shoulder Press?

The shoulder press is a fairly common shoulder exercise that can be performed sitting or standing. The exercise primarily trains the front and middle parts of the shoulder. The triceps also help to straighten the arms, so they are definitely trained. Furthermore, the torso is activated, mainly when standing, so the internal abdominal muscles also work. A win-win exercise quite simply.


Grab a pair of dumbbells that suit you and that you can handle in a controlled manner (do not overdo it from the beginning). Then sit down on a bench. The bench can either be in an upright position to stabilize your back or flat. Then lift the dumbbells so you have them at the same level as your ears with your elbows pointing towards the floor. The palms should point away from you. Then lift the dumbbells in a controlled motion until your arms are outstretched toward the ceiling. Hold in the top position for one second. Then slowly return to the starting position and repeat the movement.

The exercise can also be performed standing up. Make sure your feet are shoulder-width apart and that your back is straight. When you push up the weights, your back wants to sway. If you have activated the torso, it will instead be a useful, natural sway, and your deep and lower abdominal muscles will get some exercise as well. Do not push your head into the chair as it can cause injuries to the neck

Guide for Dumbbell Shoulder Press

  • Do not take on too much weight; if you do not have control over the dumbbell, the back will work instead, which we do not want.
  • Pull back the shoulders and pull your shoulder blades together, push the chest forward.
  • Keep the shoulders lowered throughout the lift, do not move them upwards towards the ears.
  • Do not swing the upper body; it is the arms that should move
  • Lower the weight calmly and slowly, always with tension in the muscle you are exercising. 
  • Doing the exercise standing up and lifting one arm at a time activates the abdomen even more.
  • Do not push your head into the chair if you are performing the exercise while sitting.

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