Many guys develop a decent set of anterior (front) deltoid muscles, just from doing enough chest work. However, you’ll never max out your physique development and reach the height of muscle symmetry if you have flat, underdeveloped side (medial) deltoids sitting on your shoulders. Generally, the medial fibers of the deltoid do not get enough stimulation to get that round, full appearance from basic exercises alone. Nevertheless, this is fixable – but you must be willing to train with fire-blazing muscle tension to build the medial part of the deltoid.
If you thicken the medial part of the deltoid, your upper back and chest will look wider from the front, even when relaxed. Furthermore, thick medial deltoids will improve your symmetry, because your waist will look smaller. Seated dumbbell lateral raises are excellent for adding shape and size to the deltoids, without overly stressing the shoulder joint.
Overview of the Deltoid Muscle
The deltoid muscle caps five other muscles and the bony connections, which make up the shoulder joint. This deltoid has muscle sections that arise from three different bony regions on the shoulder girdle. The anterior fibers of the deltoid attach between the lateral part of the clavicle and the humerus bones. The anterior fibers flex the humerus at the shoulder (bringing the humerus bone of the upper arm forward), and also medially (internally) rotate the humerus at the shoulder. The posterior fibers of the deltoid originate from the inferior edge of the spine of the scapula, and insert at the lateral (outside) of the humerous bone (upper arm). These fibers extend the humerus (pull the arm backward). The medial fibers of the deltoid are primarily activated by seated lateral raises. They connect the acromion of the scapula and the humerus bone. Although weight trainers call this the lateral portion of the deltoid, these fibers are anatomically located in the medial region of the deltoid (with respect to the other fibers of the deltoid muscle). The medial fibers abduct the humerus, raising the humerus away from the side of the body.
The supraspinatus is one of the rotator cuff muscles and is activated by seated lateral raises. It begins near the cervical vertebrae, and attaches on the head of the humerus. Like the medial deltoid, the supraspinatus abducts the humerus. It also keeps the head of the humerus in the shoulder joint. The shoulder has been designed for mobility rather than stability. As a result, lifting huge weights has a greater potential to induce injury to the shoulder than other, more stable joints. This does not mean that you should not train the shoulders with decent loads, but the super-heavy stuff should be reserved for squats and deadlifts. Seated dumbbell side laterals provide superb stimulation for the medial fibers of the deltoids, without the need for hoisting super-heavy weights or risking injury to the rotator cuff muscles.
Dumbbell Side Lateral Raises
1. Place a short-backed 90º bench in front of a mirror. Sit on the bench and take a dumbbell in each hand. Turn your palms toward the side of your thighs.
2. Your elbows should be just short of straight, but your elbow joint angle should not change throughout the range of motion. Lean slightly forward, but look up so that you can see your arms in the mirror.
3. Slowly and simultaneously raise both dumbbells from a position that is beside your thighs, and continue lifting until the hands are just slightly above shoulder level. This is abduction of the arms. Both arms should work at the same time, and you should be able to draw a line that runs from one arm, through the shoulders, to the other arm. Your palms should be facing the floor as you are lifting the weight upward.
4. Continue to raise the dumbbells out to the side of the body until they are at shoulder level, so your arms are parallel to the floor. Rising higher than this will stimulate the trapezius, but it will not help develop the deltoid muscles any further.
5. As the top position is approached, begin to pronate the hands until the knuckle of the little finger is at about a 45º angle, relative to the ceiling. Hold the top position briefly.
6. Slowly return your arms to the sides by retracing your steps. This means that you will turn your palms back to a position that is facing the floor, then lower your arms toward your thighs.
6. Do not pause at the bottom, but immediately begin the lift upward. This will keep the fibers in the medial deltoid firing throughout the set. After you have completed 12-15 full reps, you can rest 60-90 seconds before starting your next set.
Many people sit too vertically during this exercise. To maximize activation of the medial fibers of the deltoid, remember to bend forward just a little. However, don’t bend your torso too far forward, otherwise the rear deltoids will get the load.
The next important point about this exercise is to make sure that you rotate at your shoulder (not just at the wrist), to make the knuckle of the little finger move upward as you approach the top of the lift. It is also important that you do the exercise strictly, without jerky movements. It is not necessary to worry too much about lifting superhuman weight. On the other hand, you cannot expect good results if you are lifting pencil weight, either.
The road to shoulder greatness is not easy, and you will have to push yourself if you want to be outstanding. Fully sliced shoulders are within your reach – if you want them badly enough. When the Average Joe wants to quit, you need to do 2 more reps. If you are careful in your exercise form and diligent in your training, over the next few months you should see new thickness and contours emerging from the recesses of your short-sleeve shirts.
Boettcher CE, Ginn KA, & Cathers, I 2009. Which is the optimal exercise to strengthen supraspinatus? Med Sci Sports Exerc, 41, 1979-1983.
Kibler WB, Sciascia AD, Uhl TL, Tambay N & Cunningham T 2008. Electromyographic analysis of specific exercises for scapular control in early phases of shoulder rehabilitation. Am J Sports Med, 36, 1789-1798.
Minning S, Eliot CA, Uhl TL & Malone TR 2007. EMG analysis of shoulder muscle fatigue during resisted isometric shoulder elevation. J Electromyogr Kinesiol, 17, 153-159.
Moore KL and AF Dalley. Clinically oriented Anatomy, Fourth Edition. Baltimore, Lippincott Williams & Williams, Kelly, PJ Editor, 1992, pp. 690-698.
Reinold MM, Macrina LC, Wilk KE, Fleisig GS, Dun S, Barrentine SW, Ellerbusch MT & Andrews JR 2007. Electromyographic analysis of the supraspinatus and deltoid muscles during 3 common rehabilitation exercises. J Athl Train, 42, 464-469.
Yasojima T, Kizuka T, Noguchi H, Shiraki H, Mukai N & Miyanaga Y 2008. Differences in EMG activity in scapular plane abduction under variable arm positions and loading conditions. Med Sci Sports Exerc, 40, 716-72.
Uhl TL, Muir TA & Lawson L 2010. Electromyographical Assessment of Passive, Active Assistive, and Active Shoulder Rehabilitation Exercises. PMR, 2, 132-141.
The post Get Bigger, Thicker Shoulders appeared first on FitnessRX for Men.
By: Stephen E. Alway, Ph.D., FACSM
Title: Get Bigger, Thicker Shoulders
Sourced From: www.fitnessrxformen.com/training/get-bigger-thicker-shoulders/
Published Date: Wed, 23 Jun 2021 12:17:17 +0000
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Ripped Leg Blast for Carved Thighs
Powerful and thick thighs require gut-busting exercises like squats and leg presses. However, once you have acquired adequate thigh mass and strength, you should consider adding some balance and sharpness to the muscle bellies in your thighs. Although tough to accomplish, leg extensions provide a great way to carve the separations between the muscle bellies, and to accentuate the “teardrop” shape of the four quadriceps muscles of the anterior thigh.
Active Muscles in Leg Extensions
The three vasti muscles comprise most of the anterior thigh.1 The vastus medialis covers the medial (inner) part of the femur bone (thigh bone). When it is well developed, it forms a teardrop-like shape over the medial side of the knee joint. The vastus lateralis muscle attaches to the lateral (outer) part of the femur bone. The vastus intermedius connects to the femur bone between the vastus lateralis and the vastus medialis muscles. The fibers of all three vasti muscles come together at the quadriceps tendon, which crosses the patella (kneecap) to attach to the tibia bone just below the knee.1
Together, the three vasti muscles extend the leg at the knee joint, although the vastus intermedius may be more fatigue resistant than the vastus lateralis.2 The vastus medialis oblique (VMO), which is a small part of the vastus medialis muscle, attaches to the medial part of the patella. It is thought to help the patella track properly during movement of the knee. Improper tracking can increase the likelihood for knee injury.
The vastus medialis and especially the VMO part of this muscle are primarily responsible for tibial rotation (rotation of the tibia bone of the lower leg on the femur) during knee extension. This rotation or “twist” has been shown to increase the activation of the VMO portion of the vastus lateralis even more than doing knee extensions with the hip adducted (thigh rotated so that the medial portion of the knee is facing mostly upwards).3 Dorsiflexion of the foot (moving the ankles so the toes are pointing towards your head) also increases the activation of the VMO by more than 20 percent.4 Likely this is because the dorsiflexor muscles stabilize the tibia during knee flexion and resist rotation of the tibia on the femur as the knee straightens.
The fourth muscle of the quadriceps group is the rectus femoris muscle. It attaches to the anterior part of the hip bone just above the hip joint.1 The largest bulk of the muscle fibers are located on the upper three-quarters of the thigh, whereas the largest belly of the vastus medialis and vastus lateralis are more inferior (i.e., closer to the knee). The distal end of the rectus femoris muscle becomes tendinous and it creates a deep valley between the lateral and medial vastus muscles as it approaches the knee.1 It assists the other quadriceps muscles by extending the leg at the knee joint, although it is less effective when the hip is flexed than if it is straight.
The three vastus muscles of the anterior thigh are strongly activated by single-leg knee extensions. The rectus femoris is not activated as strongly, but it does undergo some overload when the anterior thigh is under contractile effort, about halfway up to the top of each repetition.
1. You should always warm up your knees with some stationary cycling prior to getting into leg extensions. Furthermore, the resistance on your first set should be fairly light to allow the joint to fully warm up before you get to the heavier stuff.
2. Adjust the knee extension machine so that the pivot point of the lifting arm is directly adjacent to the center of the side of your knee joint.
3. Position the ankle roller/leg pad over the lower part of the leg (above the ankle joint).
4. Take about three seconds to slowly extend (straighten) both leg so that the weight is lifted upward from the stack.
5. Continue upwards until the tibia and the femur bones form a straight line and the knee angle is straight. Hold this for two seconds at the top.
6. Slowly lower the weight (about four seconds down) towards the starting position. Once the knee has reached 90 degrees, start the upwards extension phase again. Continue for 12-15 repetitions for the first set. Lower the number of repetitions but increase the resistance for subsequent sets.
7. On the next sets, lift the weight upwards until the knee joint becomes almost straight, but just slightly short of a total knee lockout. Be careful that you do not “jam” the knee joint into a fully locked out position, because this could cause knee cartilage damage5, especially with heavy weights. Hold the top position for a count of three before lowering the weight.
8. Lower the weight slowly (four to five seconds) towards the starting position where your knee is flexed to 90 degrees. Just before the weight stack contacts the remaining plates at the bottom, start lifting it upward for the next repetition.
The downward movement should be slower than the upward phase because you are resisting the pull of gravity. The slow lowering of the weight stretches the muscle under a resistance and this is a great stimulus to improve muscle shape and size.6
Make sure that you do not hold your breath during the lift upwards.7 Rather take a breath at the bottom (start) of the lift, and exhale as you extend the knees/legs. Take another breath at the top and slowly exhale as the weight is lowered. Take another breath at the bottom and repeat the sequence.
This is a mechanically simply exercise, but it really can be very challenging and blood depriving8,9, especially if you try to control the weight as it is moving up and down. However, if you are willing to work through some discomfort, you will be soon enjoying your new shape and slabs of carved thighs.
1. Moore K.L. Clinically Orientated Anatomy. Third Edition. Williams & Willkins, Baltimore, 1995; pp 373-500.
2. Watanabe K, Akima H. Neuromuscular activation of vastus intermedius muscle during fatiguing exercise. J Electromyogr Kinesiol 2010;20:661-666.
3. Stoutenberg M, Pluchino AP, Ma F et al. The impact of foot position on electromyographical activity of the superficial quadriceps muscles during leg extension. J Strength Cond Res 2005;19:931-938.
4. Coburn JW, Housh TJ, Cramer JT et al. Mechanomyographic and electromyographic responses of the vastus medialis muscle during isometric and concentric muscle actions. J Strength Cond Res 2005; 19:412-420.
5. Senter C, Hame SL. Biomechanical analysis of tibial torque and knee flexion angle: implications for understanding knee injury. Sports Med 2006;36:635-641.
6. Alway SE, Winchester PK, Davis ME et al. Regionalized adaptations and muscle fiber proliferation in stretch- induced enlargement. J Appl Physiol 1989;66:771-781.
7. Garber CE, Blissmer B, Deschenes MR et al. American College of Sports Medicine position stand. Quantity and quality of exercise for developing and maintaining cardiorespiratory, musculoskeletal, and neuromotor fitness in apparently healthy adults: guidance for prescribing exercise. Med Sci Sports Exerc 2011;43:1334-1359.
8. Denis R, Bringard A, Perrey S. Vastus lateralis oxygenation dynamics during maximal fatiguing concentric and eccentric isokinetic muscle actions. J Electromyogr Kinesiol 2011;21:276-282.
9. Ueda C, Kagaya A. Muscle reoxygenation difference between superficial and deep regions of the muscles during static knee extension. Adv Exp Med Biol 2010;662:329-334.
The post Ripped Leg Blast for Carved Thighs appeared first on FitnessRX for Men.
By: Stephen E. Alway, Ph.D., FACSM
Title: Ripped Leg Blast for Carved Thighs
Sourced From: www.fitnessrxformen.com/training/ripped-leg-blast-for-carved-thighs/
Published Date: Mon, 25 Jul 2022 19:11:16 +0000
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The post PRIMAL Preworkout appeared first on FitnessRX for Men.
By: Team FitRx
Title: PRIMAL Preworkout
Sourced From: www.fitnessrxformen.com/nutrition/supplements/preworkout/primal-preworkout/
Published Date: Thu, 21 Jul 2022 16:51:41 +0000
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