5 Bodyweight Exercises to Strengthen Your Shoulders

June 11, 2013 | Nick Tumminello

It's no secret that bodyweight training is a valuable exercise technique. It effectively challenges your muscles anywhere and anytime. However, if you don't know how to target your shoulders, it can be challenging to build them with only your body weight. (Try Thomas Jones' shoulder mass workout.)

Try these five simple bodyweight shoulder exercises to get bigger and stronger shoulders without using equipment. Perform two to three of them during an upper-body workout. Try to perform two to three sets of 10 to 12 repetitions of each exercise, but adjust these numbers based on your fitness level.

1. Handstand Push-Ups

Don't be scared of the name—you don't ask a have to be able to perform the same type of handstand as a gymnast. Use a wall to support your body and maintain the position while you perform the presses.

Watch the video below to learn how to perform Handstand Push-Ups.

2. Pike Push-Ups

If you are unable to do a Handstand Push-Up or you're uncomfortable with the exercise, Pike Push-Ups can serve as a great alternative. Assume a position where your legs are supported so you don't have to press their weight and balance your body. However, don't be fooled. Your core must work even harder on this exercise than during Handstand Push-Ups.

Watch the video below to learn how to perform Pike Push-Ups.

3. Push-Back Push-Ups

We developed the Push-Back Push-Up at Performance University to convert a Push-Up from a chest and triceps exercise to a shoulder exercise. Put simply, it's a hybrid Push-Up variation that calls for a pressing action similar to what you perform during an Incline Press.

Watch the video below to learn how to perform Push-Back Push-Ups.

4. Reverse Burpees

We also developed the Reverse Burpee at Performance University as a more dynamic and explosive variation of the Push-Back Push-Up.

Watch the video below to learn how to perform Reverse Burpees.

5. Shoulder YTL Circuit

The shoulder YTL Circuit primarily works the rhomboids, middle trapezius and lower trapezius, but it also hits the deltoids. The other exercises above also hit the deltoids. So this will ensure that all of your shoulder muscles are strong and will help prevent injury.

Watch the videos below to learn how to perform the Shoulder YTL Circuit.

Shoulder Y's

Shoulder T's

Shoulder L's

Watch the video below to learn the best ways to perform the circuit.

Photo: kettlebellrob.blogspot.com

Nick Tumminello
- Nick Tumminello, known as the "Trainer of Trainers," is the owner of Performance University, which provides hybrid fitness training for athletes and educational programs for...
Nick Tumminello
- Nick Tumminello, known as the "Trainer of Trainers," is the owner of Performance University, which provides hybrid fitness training for athletes and educational programs for...
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