Get Sexy Shoulders in 5 Moves

Build up your shoulders to look smaller at the waist with these five delt exercises.
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If a late-night infomercial claimed you could have a narrower waistline without losing a pound, you’d probably chalk it up as hooey. But nothing could be more true: By building up all parts of your shoulders, you can create the illusion of a smaller waist and take one step closer to that coveted V-taper every woman wants. Strong delts will also allow you to perform countless daily activities and prevent injuries linked to muscle imbalances. Better yet, you’ll look amazing in spring tanks and sleeveless tops.

Take a Balanced Approach

Your workout needs a good mix of isolation and compound motions, and believe it or not, rows are a great addition to your shoulder-training program. Though they are traditionally thought of as back exercises, rows performed with a wide, neutral grip (in which the palms face each other) mimic shoulder abduction, especially when performed at inclined angles.

Complete plan for sexy shoulders in 5 moves

Your Complete Plan

This workout uses several rowing moves and targets all three shoulder muscles for a well-rounded program. Do one to two times per week, or alternate with traditional isolation workouts every other week. Beginners should use a moderate weight and focus on form, while more advanced participants can hit a fairly heavy weight to develop strength and shape. Start this workout now and by summer you’ll be dare to be bare with confidence!

An overview of the sexy shoulders in 5 moves workout

Incline Bench Neutral-Grip Dumbbell Press

Incline bench neutral-grip dumbbell press for sexy shoulders in 5 moves

Muscles Targeted: anterior delts, pectorals, triceps

Setup: Set a flat bench to a 45-degree angle and sit with your feet wide for stability. Hold a set of weights at your shoulders, palms facing inward and elbows pointing toward the floor.

Action: Extend your arms and press the dumbbells straight up without coming inward at the top. Slowly lower to the start.

Tip: Imagine your arms are on a track moving straight up and down like pistons.

Seated High-Cable Rope Row

Seated high-cable rope row for sexy shoulders in 5 moves

Muscles Targeted: lateral and posterior delts, traps, rhomboids

Setup: Attach a rope to a seated cable station and sit with your knees bent and your back straight. Hold an end of the rope in each hand with your palms facing inward. Draw your shoulders back and sit up tall.

Action: Drive your elbows up and outward, pulling the rope toward your clavicle and opening your arms as you reach peak contraction. At the top, your arms should be parallel to the ground and bent 90 degrees. Slowly reverse the move and return to the start.

Tip: Don’t allow excessive movement of the torso here; keep your upper body fairly steady as you pull up and back with your shoulders and back muscles.

Bent-Over Two-Arm Reverse-Grip Dumbbell Row

Bent-over two-arm reverse-grip dumbbell row for sexy shoulders in 5 moves

Muscles Targeted: posterior and lateral delts, lats, rhomboids, biceps

Setup: Stand with your feet hip-width apart and hold a set of dumbbells at your sides. Bend at the waist until your torso makes a 45-degree angle and allow your arms to hang straight down perpendicular to the floor, palms facing forward.

Action: Drive your elbows up and back and pull your shoulder blades inward to row both dumbbells up as high as you can. Pause at the peak contraction, then slowly lower to the start.

Tip: Imaging pinching a pencil between your shoulder blades to elicit the proper contraction.

Reverse-Grip One-Arm Dumbbell Row

Reverse-grip one-arm dumbbell row for sexy shoulders in 5 moves

Muscles Targeted: posterior and lateral delts, lats, rhomboids, biceps

Setup: Kneel on a flat bench with your right knee and right hand on the bench, and hold a dumbbell in your left hand, palm facing forward. Flatten your back and square your shoulders.

Action: Keeping your shoulders square, drive your elbow up and back, pulling your shoulder blade toward your spine and rowing the dumbbell up as high as you can. Pause a moment at the top, then slowly lower to the start.

Tip: Do this move sideways to the mirror to make sure your back is flat and your shoulders are square throughout.

Bent-Over Cable Reverse Flye

Bent-over cable reverse flye for sexy shoulders in 5 moves

Muscles Targeted: lateral and posterior delts, rhomboids, traps

Setup: Attach D-handles to the low cable pulleys and hold them in opposite hands. Stand in the center of the cable machine with your feet hip-width apart and fold forward from the waist with your back flat and your abs tight. Your arms should be perpendicular to the floor with your elbows slightly bent and your palms facing inward.

Action: Open your arms to the sides, pulling the handles simultaneously upward and outward as high as you can. Pause a moment at the top, then slowly lower to the start.

Tip: Use a lighter weight for this move, because the primary movers are the much smaller posterior delts.

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