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The Arnold Press for Building Shoulders


www.ironmanmagazine.comQ: What do you think of the Arnold press for developing the shoulders and of dumbbell shoulder presses in general?

A: The Arnold press is a fine exercise—and because the hands don’t reach full pronation until the top of the movement, it could be considered a more natural movement and easier on the shoulders.

As a strength coach, I’ve found that the seated dumbbell shoulder press is a powerful diagnostic tool. I use the ratio of the seated dumbbell overhead press to the bench press as a method of assessing structural balance. Specifically, the weight performed for eight reps on each dumbbell should represent 29 percent of the weight you can lift in the close-grip bench press. So a man able to close-grip bench about 220 pounds for a single would use a pair of 65s for eight reps on seated dumbbell overhead presses.

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