Tag Archives: posture
It’s common place to see people doing front raises in the gym, even though for them it’s essentially a pointless exercise.
I’m not saying it’s a bad exercise, far from it, some top lifters need it as an assistance movement for what ever specific reason, however the average gym goer who has a program heavily biased towards pressing and anterior chain movements DOES NOT need to be doing front raises.
Before we go on let us have a look at some of the exercises that recruit the front deltoid.
- Presses (pretty much all of them)
- Bear crawls
- Sled pushing
The main function of the anterior deltoid is shoulder flexion — lifting your arm up and to the front of your body. So any movement that involves this hits it, make a note.
That’s the first reason you don’t need to isolate this muscle.
The second is because daily life is heavily anterior chain dominant, here is a short list of daily living movements that cause a short/tight/over worked front delt and also high pecs too.
- Sitting at a desk
- Playing computer games
- Putting things on shelves
You get the idea. Life is heavily biased towards overworking what are known as ‘tonic muscles’ of the body and rarely have you stimulating the phasic ones (posterior chain).
For the average person Id recommend having some form of reverse fly in every session and perhaps a lateral raise movement in each pressing session, I can’t remember the exact studies, I apologise, however on average the lateral delt has 2/3 the development of the front and the rear was barely scraping 1/3 of the front delts growth.
You’d also do well to chuck in face pulls, bat wings (isometric holds) and resistance band pull apart drills in your daily life (say 50 pull-aparts per hour and 60 seconds bat wing).
This simple information will help you balance the entire shoulder, it will also help improve your posture and look 100% better, no one likes a round shouldered look, its weak and prone to injury.
Training the mirror muscles is most certainly enjoyable. You can see the muscle working and the blood rushing in to fill it to capacity and give you that elation of the pump.
Training the anterior chain (muscles in the front of the body) is preferred by many because of the following 3 reasons:
1 – You can see them.
2 – They’re easier to train than their counter parts (posterior chain).
3 – You’re a tad vain.
When it comes to having a balanced body a lot of people fall woefully short because of how much they neglect (legs and back), however failing to train your posterior chain will result in you leaving lots of potential growth/strength untouched.
Don’t quite believe it?
Here is an example:
A lad wants a better bench. He trains it religiously and starts to make some impressive lifts until he is forever handicapped when he tears his rotator cuff or pec. Game Over.
Stories like this are common because people lift with their ego and not with their brain. If you try to build a building and only make one wall eventually it will fall over and break because nothing else is supporting it. Your body is the same as a house, it need solid foundations and structure before you worry about what colour to paint the front porch.
Having a strong posterior chain will help you with the following:
Squats, Deadlifts, Bench Press, Shoulder Press, Carrying Heavy Objects, Sprinting, Jumping, Climbing, Posture and basically make you more robust in daily life and prevent lower back problems.
For every pushing movement you do, you need to perform two pulling movements. Follow this rule and you will find yourself largely injury free, ignore it and you can simply reminisce the days when you had a good bench.