Summer feels just around the corner and that means tank tops, short sleeves, and bathing suits!
The number one request around this season is for tips to improve flabby arms and give a nice toned look. A common misconception about the mission for great arms is that they have to be big and muscular – they don’t.Yet often I see dedicated gym-enthusiasts pounding through bicep and tricep exercises trying to achieve these toned arms, only to dismay when they get bigger arms with the same shape. A not-so-well-kept secret in the competitive bikini world is to prioritize growing great shoulders to shape and tone the arm.
A poppin’ shoulder cap can create beautiful arm lines and even give the illusion of an hour glass physique without necessarily adding any bulk. As the shoulder joint has three degrees of freedom – meaning that it has three movement in all three dimensions - it can be very susceptible to injury and over-use. For this reason, it is important to use proper form, bracing, warm-up and stretching techniques to maximize engagement and decrease risk for injury.
To help you build the shapely shoulder you've always wanted, I am sharing with you my favourite shoulder routine. Check it out!
- Ski-ergometer with shoulder circles: 2 min
- Rope-ergometer pulling UP: level 1 for 1 min
- Dumbbell, cable or band external rotations to warm-up the rotator cuff: 15-20
- Kettlebell halos:
- Scapular push-ups: 10-15
All exercises are performed for 3-4 sets with 45 seconds rest between.
*Pro-tip: Use a tempo of 4 counts through the eccentric and 1 count through the concentric portion of the lift to maximize time-under-tension. Choose a weight that is manageable but also difficult enough that you are not able to achieve more than 2 reps beyond the rep ranges here.
- 1 Cable front raise x 12
- 2a Dumbbell seated over head press x 12
- 2b Lateral raise (thumbs up) x 14-16, range of motion should start at bottom ribs to just above shoulder height
- 3a Dumbbell front raise x 12
- 3b Dumbbell rear delt fly x 12
- 4 Machine lateral raises pyramid x 12, x 10, x 8, x 6 where each set gets heavier
- 5 Reverse pec dec/rear delt machine x 14-16, last set is a drop-set
- 6 Cable rope face pull x 14-16
- Turkish get-ups
- Battle ropes