This One-Move Dumbbell Ladder Builds Boulder Shoulders in 10 Minutes

shoulder workout
This One-Move Workout Builds Boulder Shouldersmilanvirijevic - Getty Images

We’ll cut straight to the chase, if you’re pushed for time, equipment or motivation, this is the workout you need to supersize your shoulders.

With just one movement, a simple tweak in form to handle more weight and a clever protocol that allows you to work right on the cusp of your limits from start to finish, this dumbbell ladder packs a serious muscle building punch.

You’re going to be using a ‘ladder’ format, meaning that after a thorough warm-up, you’ll work your way down in reps from 10 to 1. As you’re only using one dumbbell, you’ll alternate sides each round, giving your delt's just enough time to rest before they’re thrust back into the fray. Perform ten reps with your left arm, followed by ten with your right, before switching back to your left for nine reps. Continue in this fashion, alternating arms, until you reach one final shoulder-burning rep and 110 reps in total.

Push Press x 10/10, 9/9, 8/8…1/1

Clean your dumbbell onto your shoulder, palms facing in. Take a breath and brace your core, tucking your pelvis in and squeezing your glutes (A). Dip at the knees and use your legs to help (B) explosively press your dumbbells overhead. Pause at the top before lowering slowly to your shoulders over a count of 3-4 seconds, inhaling as you lower. Do the same on you opposite side, matching the number of reps before switching back and continuing on. Remove a single rep each round.

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