Best Exercise for Boulder Shoulders Based on EMG
With only a glance at a Silverback Gorilla, one thing you notice is their broad shoulders packed with muscle. The Lion is called the King of the Jungle, but the Silverback Gorilla may be a close runner up.
An adult gorilla’s upper body strength is six times more powerful than that of an adult human – enabling them to lift, break, and squeeze heavy objects. It’s round shoulders and massive neck make it the ultimate symbol of strength. So if you want to develop broad shoulders that stand out like a gorilla, what are the best shoulder exercises to develop massive shoulders?
To determine which shoulder exercises are most beneficial for activating each muscle of the shoulders, researchers from the American College of Exercise compiled a list of the ten exercises most often performed in the gym. The list included:
-dumbbell shoulder press
-cable diagonal raise
-dumbbell front raise
-barbell upright row
-bent-arm lateral raise
-45-degree incline row
-seated rear lateral raise
The researchers placed EMG electrodes all over the subject’s delts—the anterior, medial and posterior deltoids. Here are the results for each of the exercises:
The dumbbell shoulder press elicited significantly higher muscle activation than any other exercise tested.
Two exercises came out on top: the 45-degree incline row and the bent-arm lateral raise.
Researchers found that the seated rear lateral raise and the 45-degree incline row both provided the greatest muscle activation for the back of the shoulder.
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