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|Overhead Military Shoulder Press|
|Written by Jeff Behar, MS, MBA|
The shoulder press, aka the military press, is a great exercise for shoulders and triceps. Doing the press standing demands that your torso muscles (abs, lower back, obliques, spinal stabilizers, and transversus abdominis) work harder in order to help stabilize your body. It's also a much more functional movement; consider how often you reach for things and press things overhead when standing compared to seated.
Shoulder Presses are a basic compound exercise (involves two or more joint movements) that require muscles on both sides of the shoulder joint to fire, but they primarily recruit the anterior (front) deltoids. Because the lift is performed standing, it also develops the arms, the abdominals, the obliques, the costal muscles, and the back, which all act as stabilizers.
Muscles Worked when Performing the Military Press (Shoulder Press)
The following errors are potentially dangerous and can result in injury. Avoid them at all costs.
Incorrect form may lead to multiple types of injuries including:
The Military Shoulder overhead press has several variations. All of these exercises can be performed either seated or standing. With seated exercises you will be able to handle more weight if you lean back against a pad. With a standing or seated unsupported press you'll need more muscles for stabilization, and the extra work will demand lighter weights.
Variations are intended to work different subgroups of muscles, or work the same muscles in slightly different ways. Try these variations of the press:
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