How to Train Your Deltoid Muscle Properly to Get Bulk?

Deltoid muscle exercises for bulking (Photo via Anastase Maragos/Unsplash)
Deltoid muscle exercises for bulking (Photo via Unsplash/Anastase Maragos)

Deltoid muscle is an important part of overall physique. If you want to have a classic physique appearance, the focus should be on building broad shoulders with a tapered waist.

The deltoid muscle needs immense training, as the three delts make up the shoulders and upper back. However, before understanding the exercises you can do to build your deltoid muscles, here’s a quick explanation of the deltoid anatomy.

The deltoid anatomy

Shoulder (Photo via Unsplash/Gorilla Freak)
Shoulder (Photo via Unsplash/Gorilla Freak)

The following information you need to understand the deltoid muscle, such as deltoid origin and insertion, shoulder anatomy, parts, functions, and others.


The deltoid muscle is triangular shaped and is located on the shoulders. It's a cover for the shoulder joint and is responsible for shoulder movements.

Parts of the deltoid

The deltoid muscle has three parts:

  1. Anterior deltoids (front)
  2. Lateral deltoids (middle)
  3. Posterior/rear deltoids (back)

Together, the three parts make up the shoulder joint.

Deltoid insertion and origin

The anterior head of the deltoid originates from the lateral third of the clavicle and extends to insert itself on the humerus’ deltoid tuberosity.

The lateral head of the deltoid muscles originates from the spacula’s acromion process. Like the anterior deltoid, it inserts itself into the humerus’ deltoid tuberosity.

Finally, the rear delts originates from the spine of the scapula and extends into the deltoid tuberosity of the humerus.

Deltoid functions

The anterior head of the muscle group is responsible for arm flexion. The lateral head’s primary function is arm abduction, while the rear delt’s primary function is arm extension.

Deltoid muscle exercises to bulk properly

Deltoid exercises (Photo via Unsplash/Arthur Edelmans)
Deltoid exercises (Photo via Unsplash/Arthur Edelmans)

The following are some of the top compound and isolation exercises for deltoid muscles. You can add them to your workout routine to make your shoulders broader and stronger:

Barbell shoulder press

To do it:

  • Set the barbell at shoulder height. Add suitable weight plates to the barbell.
  • Hold the barbell at shoulder-width, with the palms facing outwards
  • De-rack the barbell, and place it on your shoulders
  • Engage the deltoid muscles, and push the barbell overhead.
  • The triceps are the secondary muscle group being worked on in this exercise. You must ensure that they do not take over during the exercise.

Additionally, you can use the dumbbell version of the shoulder press to add variation to your routine.

Dumbbell lateral raise

It's done as follows:

  • Hold a dumbbell in each hand. Stand straight with your arms by your side
  • Raise your arms to the sides while keeping a slight bend on the elbows
  • Try to push your arms to a point where the elbow aligns with the shoulders
  • Keep your wrist strong to hold the dumbbell in place
  • Hold the position at the top of the motion for a second before steadily lowering the weight

You can opt to do a cable lateral raise as a variation as well.

Dumbbell front raise

It's done as follows:

  • Hold a dumbbell in each hand. Keep your body straight and arms in front of you
  • The palms should be facing you at the starting position
  • Raise your arms upwards, but keep a slight bend on the elbows
  • Keep pushing your arms till the wrist is aligned with the shoulders
  • Lower the dumbbells slowly to control the negative

You can alternate between barbell front raise and cable front raise for variation.

Reverse fly

It's done as follows:

  • Hold a dumbbell in each hand and sit on a bench.
  • Bend forward from the hips, and keep the dumbbells below the thighs.
  • Keep your arms extended towards the floor.
  • Keep your back straight, and push your arms backwards in a reverse fly motion.
  • Engage your rear delts for maximum impact.
  • Move back to the starting position steadily.

Face pull

It's done as follows:

  • Set the anchor at forehead level. Attach the rope handle to it, and select a suitable weight
  • Hold the ropes with both hands, and step back. You should be able to extend your hands in front of you and keep the tension
  • Pull the rope towards yourself while the elbows flare outwards
  • Engage your rear throughout the movement. Steadily lower the weight before starting the next rep

Deltoid exercises (Photo via Unsplash/Anastase Maragos)
Deltoid exercises (Photo via Unsplash/Anastase Maragos)

Deltoid exercise should be an important part of your workout routine. A strong set of delts are always beneficial, especially for compound movements and various day-to-day movements. The more you work the delts, the better your upper body appearance will become.

Quick Links

Edited by Bhargav
Be the first one to comment