How to Move: Shoulder Press

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People often ignore working the strict shoulder press once they learn the push press and jerk variations. It’s not on purpose, I believe that it’s just because people become obsessed with weight and numbers and the other lifts allow us to move more of it. It happens, and it’s OK!

It’s still important to recognize the value in each lift. Working strict is extremely useful for training and used in all sorts of circumstances. For now, here are a few things to think about when you shoulder press.

  • Take a hip width stance

  • Hand placement is right outside of the shoulders

  • The bar rests across the shoulders (not out front of the body)

  • The elbows are down and in front of the bar (lower than a front front squat is fine, but in front)

  • Core is braced

  • Bar sits in the meaty part of the hand (not back toward the fingers

  • To execute drive the bar straight up

  • The head moves back to allow bar path to remain straight up and down

  • Maintain a rigid body throughout

  • Finish with the bar directly overhead with the shoulder fully extended and the ribs down

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