In this article, I’m going to share with you my best strategies for getting incredibly strong on the seated dumbbell shoulder press.
Before we dive right in, here’s something to always keep in mind. Building an amazing physique ultimately comes down to getting very strong on the key movements (seated dumbbell shoulder press being one of them) and maintaining a low body fat.
Part of the Kinobody training philosophy can be summed up in a few words by the great Bruce Lee:
“Simplicity is the key to brilliance”
I aim to cut right through the BS within the fitness industry. The reality is, if you become very strong on a handful of effective exercises, muscle growth will follow…
Dumbbell (DB) Shoulder Press Benefits
The seated dumbbell shoulder press is easily my favorite exercise for building up the shoulders.
Now, I also love the standing dumbbell shoulder press as well as the barbell version, but as you get very lean, these exercises become taxing and require a bunch of core strength and stability. This makes it more difficult to progress.
Recently, I posted a 100 lb dumbbell shoulder press video on Instagram… I ended up hitting 8 reps at a bodyweight of around 173 lbs!
This kind of strength as a natural lifter is not very common. But again, it’s the secret to looking incredible.
The first strategy to achieving this level of strength is cutting down on your training volume.
Less is more.
Everyone wants to be in the gym 5 to 6 days a week, blasting their muscles with 8 exercises, 4 sets each, every workout.
This is the quickest way to stall your strength gains.
Sure, this will work if you’re on a ton of drugs. Or, you’re eating a ton of calories and gaining a bunch of fat in the process.
Although, that is defeating the purpose entirely.
If you’re natural and staying/getting lean, you cannot train that much.
My training consists of only 3 short and intense lifting sessions each week.
Working out only 3 times per week on non-consecutive days (think, Monday, Wednesday, Friday) also allows for complete central nervous system recovery, which is the powerhouse behind your muscles lifting the weights.
This allows me to hit the gym, each workout, feeling fresh and recharged, ready to crush every set.
Don’t just take my word on this either. Try training less and see what your strength does.
Time after time, those who do test this are shocked at the progress they make when they start doing less in the gym and put their efforts into what matters most.
The Greek God Program is crafted in a way to make strength gains at the fastest rate possible.
It has 2 workouts in which you rotate over your 3 weekly training sessions.
And of course, it’s structured around the key movements and only the key movements.
*Your results may vary. Testimonials and examples used are exceptional results and are not intended to guarantee, promise, represent and/or assure that anyone will achieve the same or similar results.
Doing less is going to enable your body to adapt and get stronger.
Even if you’re cutting.
Your body will be able to recover.
And if you’re able to easily stay consistent and make strength gains…
That’s truly how you build muscle.
100 lb Dumbbell Shoulder Press & Exercise Rotation
The Greek God Program will get you strong. Fast.
After you reach intermediate and advanced levels of strength, I then recommend switching to my Superhero Bulking Program.
This program switches to 3 workouts a week for each of your 3 training days.
Best of all, in shoulder specialization phase, you’ll be hitting the shoulder press first. While you’re completely fresh. Leading to smoother strength gains on your overhead presses.
The next strategy to build up to a 100 lb dumbbell shoulder press is exercise rotation.
The fact of the matter is, we will all hit plateaus sooner or later. If this weren’t the case, we’d all be hitting insane weight in the gym in a matter of months.
For this reason, I use exercise rotation where you switch the exercise up every 4-6 weeks to offer a new stimulus to the muscles.
You’re still working the same muscle group, it’s just a new exercise. I love to rotate standing barbell shoulder press and seated dumbbell shoulder press every 4 to 6 weeks.
This method works amazing for making consistent strength gains.
Along with exercise rotation comes reverse pyramid training. Which is a huge aspect of making even weekly strength gains.
With RPT, you’re lifting your heaviest set first while you’re fully capable. Next, you make sure to take full 3 minute rest periods to make sure you’re ready for the next set.
You’ll then drop the weight for the second set and knock out a couple more reps, then drop the weight again for the third set and do 1-2 more reps than set two.
By starting with your heaviest set first, you’re recruiting maximal muscle fibers while fresh. Then when you drop the weight, you’ll have more muscle fiber recruitment than working up to heavier weights, which allows you to still exert maximum force and effort while adding a rep or two, even though you are becoming fatigued.
A typical rep scheme of Reverse Pyramid Training for seated dumbbell shoulder press may look like:
(4-6) (6-8) (8-10)
When you hit the top end of the rep range (6, 8, or 10) you can then add 5 lbs and start back at the bottom and build your way up again.
My final strategy to building up to a 100 lb dumbbell shoulder press is to use a weight that’s too heavy for you.
As though this may sound counter-intuitive, it’s a great way to progress on seated dumbbell shoulder press.
Personal Records come in many different forms. If you’re using a weight that’s super heavy, maybe you can only come down to 90 degrees on the lift.
Next workout, try to lower the weight a bit further. You’ll be keeping the same weight for your first set each workout, but each set will become smoother and smoother until you have full range of motion. And then you can move up in weight.
With all of these effective strength building tips for shoulder pressing, I love to incorporate lateral raises, rest pause training style to really make the shoulders pop.
The Superhero Bulking program is structured around using reverse pyramid training and rest pause training for maximum muscle growth.
What you need to do right now is make sure you use all the strategies we discussed in this article and stay consistent and keep pushing yourself.
You’ll hit a 100 pound dumbbell shoulder press in no time!