Want to build a strong upper body but don’t know where to begin? It is time to add Arnold Press to your workout routine. Named after the famous bodybuilding Arnold Schwarzenegger, this exercise can tone your body and strengthen your deltoids (the triangular muscles on the top of your shoulders).
In case you are not much familiar with this workout, here’s a good start right here! In this article, we are going to cover all the basics and advanced Arnold Press workout you can try at home. Just keep reading!
Arnold Press and Its Origin
Let’s begin with the basics – what exactly is Arnold Press and how was it originated. This workout is based on the regime of seven-time Mr. Olympia winner Arnold Schwarzenegger. Apart from appearing in movies like the Terminator and Robocop he was also the Governor of California.
Arnold followed this intense workout to get more anterior deltoid work while he was overhead pressing. In some ways, Arnold Press is a variation of the traditional shoulder press. It is just that Schwarzenegger twisted it a bit and created Arnold Press exercise that helped him in building all the three muscles in the shoulders. So, if you wish to sculpt your shoulders just like Arnold, you must try this home workout.
Arnold Press Muscles Worked
The main reason why Arnold Press workout is so famous is the fact that it engages the three muscle heads in shoulders: the posterior, lateral, and anterior deltoids. Due to this, you can experience a pushing power in the anterior deltoid. Simultaneously, you can also notice an increase in the thickness and width in the lateral deltoid and shoulder joint stability in the posterior deltoid.
Moreover, your forearms and triceps too get the much needed push when. This means, you will get stronger for other exercises such as Arnold Bench Press, Push-ups, Bench Presses, and Dips as well. Other Arnold Press benefits include strong core and developed back.
How to Perform the Arnold Press
Now that you know about how Arnold Press muscles worked and its benefits, we can now move to how do you really perform this exercise. It is important to remember that just like every other workout, Arnold Press workout too involves a few risks. This is why, it is suggested that you perform this workout under expert’s supervision or after learning it from a gym instructor. Nowadays, you can also take online classes where they teach you plenty of exercises including the Arnold Press exercise.
Here is a step-by-step guide on how you can perform the Arnold Press:
- Grab the Weight: If you have ever seen someone performing Arnold Press, you would know that this workout requires dumbbells. This is one reason why it is also known as Arnold dumbbell press. So, get your weights based on your fitness level.
- Set the Form: To make sure you do not end up having any injury, ensure Arnold Press form. For this, plant your feet strongly on the ground to maintain stability. During this exercise, only your arms should move. If you doing Standing Arnold Press, make sure you maintain a straight structure.
- Pull the Dumbbells Up: Hold the weights up such that they are beside your ears. Your palms should be facing you and elbows much be at roughly 90-degree angle. Maintain a position in which your wrists, shoulders, and elbows are stretched but comfortable.
- Push Up and Twist: The next step is to push the weights upwards using only your shoulders and triceps. The arms should be fully extended above your head. Make sure you do not lock your elbows. Also, while pushing the weights up, twist your wrists to rotate the weight 108-degrees in such a way that your palms will be facing away from the body as they go up. This is the ultimate rotation that engages all three deltoid muscles.
- Stay in the position: Pause at this position for 1 count. You can bend the shoulders a bit to increase the time under tension.
- Lower and twist: Now, bring back the dumbbells down while twisting your wrists in the opposite direction so that your palms end up in the same position as they were initially.
- Hold and Repeat: Now, for just 1 second, hold the position and take the dumbbells upward again with the wrist twist.
Tip: It is important to breathe properly when you are performing Arnold dumbbell press. Exhale and you push the weight up and inhale when bringing the weights down. Proper breathing will maximize muscle oxygenation that further increases your muscular endurance and stamina.
Arnold Press Variations
To get more or Arnold Press benefits, you can also try its variations. These will also make sure you can bring new elements and get away with the monotony during the workout. We have discussed a few of the famous Arnold Press variations you can try:
- Seated Arnold Press
If you are a beginner, seated Arnold Press is the best variation. It is also good for people who are recovering from a lower back injury. This variation provides additional support to your back while giving the deltoid muscles the needed workout. This variation is also good for gaining better movement through the ascent and descent and improving Arnold Press form during the workout.
- Single Arm Arnold Press
As the name suggests, you have to use only one arm during the Arnold Press. But this is not suited for beginners due to the high difficulty level. Single Arm Arnold Press requires great strength and focus. If done properly, it can double the effectiveness of the basic Arnold Press by also engaging your abs and obliques.
- Resistance Band Arnold Press
This Arnold Bench Press is suitable for people who have any wrist injury or pain. Resistance bands take away the possibility of putting excess weight on your wrists. This is also good for people who are beginners. Resistance bands are also good for performing Arnold Press while you are travelling as you do not need to carry weights then.
Other than these, you can also try Standing Arnold Press or perform Arnold bench press with barbell.
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