Build Stronger Shoulders Safely With This Subtle Shift to Lateral Raises

Lateral raises help strengthen your shoulders, but they can also destroy your shoulders if you don’t do the exercise correctly. Unfortunately, the simple move is also one of the most common exercises to get wrong, whether you’re a seasoned gym rat or a newbie.

In our latest episode of Little Things, men’s health fitness director Ebenezer Samuel, CSCS and fitness professional jonathan chadwellshow us the right way to do it.

For optimal muscle growth and joint safety, make the small change of doing the lateral raise slightly in front of you and protect your shoulders to boot. So how do you go about setting up the best way to do lateral raises? Chadwell grabs the weights and Samuel analyzes him: “The only thing you will notice is that he is very, very careful with his positioning. You have your elbows slightly in front of your shoulders as you lift, that helps protect your shoulders,” says Samuel, noting that Chadwell is also focusing on maintaining the position of his shoulder joints in something called external rotationwhich gives the rotator cuffs more room to move.

External rotation here is key. “As humans, we end up living in internally rotated positions. [Internal rotation] it’s not a comfortable position for the shoulder,” says Samuel. That’s why we want to emphasize moving away from this position in our training as much as possible and adjusting the shoulder position to external rotation.

As you try to keep your shoulders externally rotated, that often translates to lifting with an open palm. “We’re trying to skew in situations that lead to an open palm,” adds Samuel. People often rise fully to the side with their palms facing the ground. That doesn’t help you get into the safest position of external rotation.

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There’s a simple two-step approach to correcting your form and avoiding pain and potential injury: “One, position your wrists slightly in front of your shoulders as you lift, and two, think about rotating your hands so your thumbs start moving.” “. move towards the roof as you climb [the weights]Samuel offers. “So make the adjustment and enjoy more confident shoulder gains for the next two decades.”

As a bonus, following these guidelines for lateral raises can also incorporate your mid-back muscles into the movement. That’s always good, guys. Check out the video above to see all of these tips in action.

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