Overhead dumbbell press: Right technique, tips, and benefits

Overhead dumbbell press (Image via Pexels/Alesia Kozik)
Overhead dumbbell press (Image via Pexels/Alesia Kozik)

The overhead dumbbell press is a good exercise for activating one's shoulder muscles. Whether you're working on a weightlifting program or simply wish to regain mobility, it is critical to keep the muscles in your upper body in good shape. These muscles assist you in performing common chores such as storing dishes high in a cupboard or placing objects on a shelf above your head.

While the overhead dumbbell press appears to be a simple exercise, maintaining proper form is more difficult than it appears. We've broken down the overhead dumbbell press into easy-to-digest chunks below to help you become an expert in no time.

Right technique for overhead dumbbell press


The overhead dumbbell press, also known as the shoulder press, uses a unique range of motion to target the triceps, shoulders, glutes, traps, and lower back muscles. Since all of them are significant muscle groups, it is reasonable to say that the overhead dumbbell press is a very effective full-body workout.

  1. Start by selecting a weight that permits you to keep good form throughout all sets and repetitions.
  2. Take two dumbbells and stand with your feet hip-width apart and your knees slightly bent. Your shoulders should be directly above your hips, and your head and neck should be in a neutral position. Throughout the action, keep your chin tucked, as if you were cradling an egg beneath your chin.
  3. Start the upward action by pressing the dumbbells towards the ceiling while keeping your posture and neutral wrists. Your shoulder blades should move naturally with your shoulder joints as you press the dumbbells overhead.
  4. Your arms should be long at the apex of movement, with a slight bend in your elbows. The palms of your hands should be facing forward. At the top, pause while maintaining a comfortable space between the dumbbells.
  5. Bend your elbows to start the downward movement. The dumbbells should finish just above your shoulders, not touching them.
  6. Rep the movement as needed for the desired number of reps.

Tips to remember while doing overhead dumbbell press

Overhead dumbbell press for shoulder strength (Image via Pexels/Andres Ayrton)
Overhead dumbbell press for shoulder strength (Image via Pexels/Andres Ayrton)

To master the overhead dumbbell press, you must keep the following in mind:

  1. Always choose a weight that permits you to maintain complete body control throughout the exercise.
  2. Pay great attention to your body when doing any exercise, and stop immediately if you feel any pain or discomfort.
  3. Avoid jerky movements and maintain a calm motion.
  4. Exhale when you're working hard and inhale when you're relaxing.
  5. Don't cross your arms above your head.
  6. Maintain a tight regimen.
  7. Your elbows should not be locked out.

Overhead dumbbell press benefits

Including the overhead press in your training program has various advantages. Here are some of the benefits of overhead pressing:

Upperbody Strength

The overhead dumbbell press works the arms, shoulders, chest, core, and abs, all of which contribute to upper-body strength. This workout is good for more than just arm strength; other muscles are honed, grown, and strengthened as a result.

Improved Posture

The overhead dumbbell press targets major muscles that determine your posture, including the traps, abs, and core. To counteract the disadvantages of sitting on your back all day, the overhead dumbbell press trains and improves these muscles. This contributes to a healthier and pain-free back.


The overhead dumbbell press is a versatile workout that can be adjusted to your fitness level and goals. This exercise and its variations are suitable for everyone, including those with lower-extremity ailments.

Full body exercise

Although the overhead press is classified as an upper-body workout, it engages a variety of muscles throughout your entire body.

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Edited by Sandeep Banerjee