The overhead dumbbell press can be a POWERFUL addition to your shoulder routine – if done correctly.
I’ve actually changed the way I do it myself in recent times.
This change has meant that I can lift:
- Heavier loads, and
- Complete more reps
Which results in bigger, fuller shoulders! 😀
The 2 differences in form lie in:
- Wrist position
- Range of motion
Watch the video and I’ll discuss this in more detail after.
How To Do Overhead Dumbbell Presses
(1) I used to start with my palms turned in towards my head and turn them to face outwards (pronated) as I pushed the dumbbells up.
The problem with this is that it is just not the way the hands want to naturally move throughout this range of motion.
I find that the most natural position for the wrists is to be pretty much pronated (hands facing out) throughout the whole movement.
And as I’ve stated multiple times before, the position where you are most comfortable in any lift is the position where you’ll be at your strongest.
(2) Secondly, a full range of motion on the overhead dumbbell press is NOT a desirable thing in my opinion.
Lowering the weight too far towards the chest will significantly reduce the amount of weight you can use.
What I recommend is that you lower to a point at, or just below, where your UPPER arms are parallel to the floor (as I’m demonstrating in the vid).
Lowering any further doesn’t recruit any extra deltoid muscle fibers, but will reduce the weight and reps completed. So for the purposes of stimulating growth, it’s just not desirable.
You’ll see that I’m pushing the weight faster than I’m lowering it. By now you know that this is standard THT practice. A 1 second lift, 2 seconds lowering cadence has been demonstrated to increase strength by at least 10% more than other cadences.
I personally prefer the seated overhead dumbbell press because of the extra stability it creates. More Stability = Higher Force Output.
Try out this modified form for the overhead dumbbell press ASAP and see how much extra weight YOU can shift!
If you’ve any further questions about this exercise, leave a comment below.
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