If I had to choose one shoulder exercise to do for the rest of my life, standing barbell shoulder press would probably be it! I love this movement for several reasons, but mostly because of how powerful it makes me feel when I’m doing it.
If you aren’t familiar with the standing barbell shoulder press, it’s one of the best shoulder exercises you can do for upper body strength. I like to start my shoulder workouts with this movement, because it’s a challenging exercise. I prefer to go heavier with these and a little lower in reps, about eight to 10.
These can be done seated, but doing them standing requires more stability and activates a little more muscle. This movement will take some time to master and build your strength up, so don’t try to go too heavy if this is your first time. You may just want to use the barbell, to learn the movement and get the proper form down.
Here is what you will want to do:
1. In a rack set the barbell up to about chest high.
2. Use just the barbell with no weight first to feel what kind of weight you would like to add. Remember, the last three to four reps should be difficult, but you should not lose your form. You may be challenged enough by just the barbell, if so don’t worry about adding weight.
3. Standing in front of the barbell, grab it with your palms facing out a little more than shoulder-width apart.
4. With a slight bend in your knees, lift the bar off the rack to your collarbone and take a step back from the rack.
5. With your feet about shoulder-width apart, press the bar up over your head, holding it for a brief moment at the top, then slowly lower back down to your collarbone.
6. Repeat for the desired about of reps.