Grow bigger with the ultimate overhead exercise.

Boulder shoulders are reason enough to add the dumbbell shoulder press to your weekly routine. But the benefits don’t stop there. “It hits just about every muscle in your torso,” says Tyler English, author of the Natural Bodybuilding Bible. Your abs kick into gear to keep you steady while your upper chest, traps, upper back and triceps help press the weight overhead. “Such comprehensive muscle recruitment also makes it an excellent test of core strength, shoulder stability and upper-body power,” says English, who designed this month’s challenge. “And as your overhead-pressing strength increases, so too will your performance in every other pressing exercise.”

HOW TO DO IT
Each minute, do three shoulder presses and rest for whatever time remains. Start with 40 to 50% of your body weight (20 to 25% in each hand) and add 2kg per dumbbell each minute thereafter. Go for 10 minutes or until your form falters.

YOUR GOAL:
PRESS AT LEAST 80% OF YOUR BODY WEIGHT

Step 1
Stand holding a pair of dumbbells just outside your shoulders, with your arms bent and palms facing each other. Set your feet shoulder-width apart.

Step 2
Press the weights upwards until your arms are completely straight. Slowly lower the dumbbells back to the starting position.

How Much Did You Press?
50% to 60% of your body weight: Average
61% to 70% of your body weight: Above average
71% to 80% of your body weight: STRONG
81% to 100% of your body weight: MASTER OF MUSCLE