You need to include the overhead press in your training routine if you want bigger and defined shoulders. While you will build more muscle and strength, the overhead press offers more functional benefits than just isolated strength. The overhead press is a functional movement and engages multiple muscle groups, stabilizing muscles and joints, which can improve mobility, core stability, and balance.
What Is An Overhead Press?
The Overhead Press, also known as the shoulder press, or simply just a press, is an exercise movement, typically performed with a barbell which primarily benefits, the shoulders, traps, and upper chest. Overhead press is performed in a standing position, which benefits core strength, core stability, and supports improved shoulder mobility.
4 Benefits Of Overhead Press
1. Upper Body Strength
Like many other resistance training exercises, the overhead press builds more strength and develops the muscles in your upper body. The muscles worked by the overhead press include the pectorals (chest), deltoids (shoulders), triceps (arms), and trapezius (upper back). More upper body strength translates directly to better overhead performance, stability and strength, which can benefit performance and overhead Olympic lifts, such as clean and jerk and snatch.
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2. Core Stability
Overhead press is conventionally performed in a standing, upright position which requires balance, core strength, and stability. Weight lifted overhead, recruits more abdominal muscles, and stabilizing muscles, which will improve posture and assist in functional movements.
3. Better Shoulder Mobility
Shoulder mobility is crucial to keep your joints healthy and for full range of motion while performing overhead movements. Overhead can improve strength range of motion, and mobility, to avoid injury and improve athletic performance.
4. Improved Functionality
Function, means purpose, therefore, functional training is training for a specific purpose. That purpose being to build more strength, balance, and stability recruited to perform common movement patterns while performing everyday activities. Overhead press can greatly benefit function, core strength, and stability specifically applied to overhead movements and lifting.
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How To Overhead Press: The 1-2-3 Guide
According to the American Council Of Exercise (ACE) here are the proper steps on how to overhead press.
- Place a barbell in a rack at about shoulder-height.
- Place feet shoulder width apart, and brace your abs, setting a solid foundation.
- Grip the bar with the hands about shoulder-width apart and the palm facing the ceiling.
- Dip under the bar to bring it off the rack letting it rest across the top of the shoulders so that the palms are facing the ceiling and the elbows are pointed straight ahead.
- Step back, keeping the back straight and tall and press the barbell directly overhead, breathing out when pressing overhead, and breathing in when returning the bar across the top of the shoulders.
- Slowly return the weight to the shoulders and repeat for the desired number of reps.
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