Well-developed shoulders through rear deltoid exercises will keep your upper body balanced and even prevent rotator cuff and shoulder injuries.
In most cases, the front deltoids are strong from a number of pressing exercises, like overhead presses and bench presses.
This causes the front deltoids to overpower the rear deltoid, which is why it is beneficial to develop your entire shoulder through these exercises.
Strong rear deltoids will further help to improve your strength in regular exercises like the bench press. As you build strength in your upper back, you will have even more power in the bench press to complete more repetitions.
In fact, rear deltoid exercises will further help your squat since the barbell will be placed over your upper back. As you develop your rear deltoids, you will be able to better stabilize the bar and not have to hunch over when you’re squatting with weight.
If you take the time to check out anyone at the gym lifting a big bench press or a heavy squat, you will see that they have impressively developed rear deltoids.
Here are several top rear deltoid exercises that you can use to condition the backs of your shoulders. Although the rear deltoids are a small muscle group, you can effectively train with lower weights and higher repetitions at anywhere from 10 to 20 reps per set.
* Bent Over Lateral Raise:
There are numerous variations of the lateral raise, and they all work well to condition the rear deltoids. Use this bent over lateral raise in rear deltoid exercises for several workouts, and then try a different variation to balance and condition your upper body.
1. Start the exercise by holding dumbbells in both of your hands, and bending over at the waist with your feet shoulder width apart. Keep your knees bent slightly to prevent any strain on your lower back.
2. Hold both dumbbells at arm’s length directly in front of you with your palms facing inward.
3. Bend at your elbows slightly, and raise the dumbbells into an arc to form a 90° angle with your body.
4. Hold this position for a second to contract your muscles, and lower back to starting position.
This lateral raise can also be performed seated on a weight bench. You should be able to use the same resistance that was used in the previous exercise to condition your rear deltoids effectively.
* Incline Lateral Raise:
1. To perform this choice in rear deltoid exercises, lie face down on an incline bench with your head at the top of the bench.
This is an exercise that will isolate and target the rear deltoid effectively; keep in mind that you will not be able to use as much weight as you are normally accustomed to in the seated or standing version.
2. Perform the exercise in the same way by keeping your weights in front of your chest and slowly raising them out to your sides at a 90° angle.
This lateral raise can be performed in the same way on a flat bench for added variation. Remember to contract your muscles at the top of the exercise and slowly lower back down to starting position without swinging or bouncing your weights.
For the best results from rear deltoid exercises, you need to continue to increase your resistance on your muscles without straining or overworking. The more weight resistance that you are able to add, the more strength and power that your body will have in your next workout.
It is also important to continue to increase your weight to avoid a fitness plateau.
In layman’s terms, this means that you need to lift enough weight so that you can only lift the desired amount of repetitions. It is important that you finish your last repetition with difficulty so that you know your muscles are fatigued.
It’s also helpful to vary the intensity of your workout routine to see the best results. This can be accomplished by increasing the amount of weight that you lift, changing your amount of sets and repetitions, changing up your deltoid exercises, and alternating your resistance.
These changes should be made on a weekly and monthly basis to keep your muscles challenged so that you can increase your size and strength.