A barbell is an incredibly versatile piece of equipment. Like dumbbells, you can use this for anything from curls, to behind the neck tricep extensions, to bench presses. But what’s more is that it is bilateral (meaning you save time by using both hands at the same time) and it allows you to perform some truly compound moves.
If you have a barbell then, you can get in an entire workout and this is an ideal way to hit the shoulders.
Why Barbell Workout?
Other than what I just said, there is a very good reason to design a workout around a single piece of equipment like this: intensity and convenience.
A lot of us make the mistake of heading into the gym with a truly complex and confusing training program. We move from one station to the next, trying out all sorts of different moves and getting stressed when our machine is being used. Do you know how much time and energy gets wasted like this?
Instead though, if you can get a whole workout at just one station, you can invest all that time and energy into the lifts themselves. You get your head in the game better and it also feels like less of a stressful imposition. This is important because if you’re considering whether or not to go to the gym, knowing that you’re only going to have to stand in one spot and use one piece of equipment makes it all that much more bearable!
Okay, so with that in mind, let’s take a look at a simple barbell workout you can do for your shoulders. And trust me: this one hurts!
First, you will start with front raises. These work to challenge the anterior deltoid heads, which will make the shoulders bulge forward and which look fantastic. By isolating those front deltoids right at the start, we ensure that they are pre-exhausted and going to be used more in all of the subsequent moves. This nicely emphasizes the overlooked area.
Next comes the overhead press. It uses all the muscle bellies, it’s very compound and functional… it’s a classic. Do it sitting on a bench to support your back.
The landmind face pull comes next. The bar is lying on the floor and you’re going to pull just one end up to your face (hence the name!). This move is ideal for hitting the rear delts to even out what we just did. What’s more is that it helps to improve posture and prevent a forward hunch.
Next, using the same set up, you’re going to do side raises with the bar. This is ideal for those medial delts which will help to complete the picture. And it sucks a whole lot less than dumbbell raises – which get mega boring.
Finally, we’re ending with one more compound move: the over behind press. This means moving the bar in front and behind the neck. No need to push it high in the air.