lean muscle man build big shoulders broad delts

Build bigger, stronger and wider shoulders

Add upper-body width by building broader, stronger and wider shoulders to transform your body with these tips from New Body Plan’s Joe Warner

If you want an athletic-looking v-shaped torso then you need to build bigger shoulders to create upper-body width. This also has the added benefit of making your waist appear even smaller!

One of the best moves to build wider shoulders is the dumbbell lateral raise.

The trouble is that it’s also one of the exercises most people just don’t know how to perform properly. Common problems include using a too-heavy weight, where form goes out the window as massive momentum is required to swing the weights up and down, placing huge strain on the delicate shoulder joint. To sculpt the wider shoulders you want, follow these four dumbbell lat raise tips instead.

Build big shoulders by lifting light weights

We can’t say this enough: you don’t need to go heavy! The best approach is to start by using a light weight to fully master the correct movement pattern: building wide shoulders through lat raises is all about technique and maximising time under tension.

Add shoulder size by training smarter

Initiate each rep by moving you hands out to the sides by 5cm, then pause and hold this position. This “switches off” the powerful traps muscles of your upper back that can “muscle in” on the movement to the detriment of fully working your side delts, which is what you want to hit hard to maximise upper-body width.

How I lost 10kg of fat with my 8-week fat loss plan

Add shoulder width with perfect form

Keeping a slight bend in your elbows raise the dumbbells up and out to the sides until they reach shoulder height: you don’t need to lift them any higher than this. The movement up should be a smooth and controlled arc, where your elbows lead the movement and so are always the highest part of your arm (yes, your elbows should be higher than your hands).

How to build bigger shoulders in one step

As the dumbbells reach shoulder height rotate your wrists inwards so that your little finger points straight up to the ceiling to further isolate and work your side delts. If you can’t visualise that now think about the how your wrist moves when you pour water out from a jug – that’s the movement you need to do at the top of the rep. Hold this top position for a second then slowly lower the weights back down under full control.

Want a broader chest too? Try these 3 big-chest tips then next time you hit the bench press!

To find your perfect transformation plan, take the New Body quiz!
Take the New Body quiz!

The 10 best supplements for men

The big 8 fat loss questions answered!

3 things I wish I’d known when trying to get lean and lose weight

How to lose your beer belly

3 easy ways to get rid of man boobs

How to get rid of back fat

How to get six pack abs