Band Front Delt Raise
How to Do the Band Front Delt Raise | In-Depth Guide [VISUAL LEARNERS]
Proper Form, Common Mistakes, Variations + Easier & Harder | Home Resistance Training
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MAIN MUSCLES WORKED IN Band Front Delt Raise
OTHER MUSCLES WORKED:
- BICEPS BRACHII
- PECTORALIS MAJORIS (upper fibers)
- SCAPULAR MUSCLES
- ROTATOR CUFF to stabilize shoulder joint
- CORE STABILIZERS to hold the upright posture
HOW the Band Front Shoulder Raise SHAPE OUR BODY
Firm and toned shoulders, forms the bulk of the shoulder muscle (along with the lateral and posterior deltoid)
WHAT WE'RE DOING TODAY
Other names for this exercise: Front Raise, Front Shoulder Raise, Front Deltoid Raise, Front Arm Raise, Front Lift, Anterior Deltoid Lift
The front delt raise is another very easy and simple movement - don't you just love uncomplicated stuff??
ALL WE'RE DOING:
Lift your arms out straight in front of you, to shoulder height. Now bring them back down.
BAM ladies, you just did a front raise.
This variation is a good option if you don’t have dumbbells. Using a band also allows you to put tension on the band before beginning the front raise, this gives you better control over the amount of resistance on the muscle.
It can be a good choice if you have limited range of motion but you want to challenge the muscle: if you only have 60 degrees of flexion, you can start the exercise with quite a bit of tension on the band. With the use of dumbbells you do not have the option of “preloading” the muscle.
When you use dumbbells you are reliant completely on the length of the lever arm and the weight of the dumbbell. When you use elastic bands you can vary the length of the band to change the resistance.
PROPER FORM: Band Front Raise
EQUIPMENT, SETS & REPS
Main set (3: Light/Med/Heavy):
X-Heavy Band (I recommend getting this too if you plan to use resistance bands frequently).
SUGGESTED STARTING WEIGHT FOR WOMEN:
Light to moderate resistance bands
SETS & REPS:
2 sets, 8 reps each
Controlled movement, these are power muscles, can be quick up and slow down, or slow up and slow down depending on goals - it is nice to vary the technique to train both power and endurance.
BODY POSITION FOR THE Band Front Raise
BAND PLACEMENT: Under both feet.
FEET: Shoulder width apart, toes pointed forward.
BODY STANCE: Neutral spine position, knees slightly bent, sternum lifted, shoulder blades in and down the back, space between the top of the shoulders and the ear lobe. Chest wide - this is important to avoid rounding the shoulders in.
Abdominals gently engaged.
HAND/GRIP: Hold one end of the band in each hand. Pronated forearm grip, palm facing behind you when your arms are at your sides. This should be comfortable, it is fine if you prefer a neutral grip position (palms facing sides).
ARM: By the side of the body, elbows straight but not locked - can have a slight bend as this can be more comfortable - less strain on the elbow joint, but do not move through the elbow.
NECK: Neutral and relaxed.
HOW TO DO
HOW TO DO Band Front Raise
CUE: Isolate the movement to the shoulder joint, keep the chest open/broad.
Lift your arms up in front of you.
Continue to lift to until your hands are parallel with the ground. Pause.
Lower the weight down to the starting position.
Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.
HOW TO SAFELY GET OUT OF THE EXERCISE
From the beginning position, release the band.
WHAT TO AVOID WITH THE Band Front Raise
Guess what? Good news! Many avoids are the same for most movements. Once you learn the basics, there's really only a few extra avoids for each individual movement.
1. Avoid Rounding Shoulders
AVOID: Avoid letting the shoulder round inwards during the exercise.
- This contributes to your rotator cuff muscle - the supraspinatus, and biceps tendon, being pinched in the top of the shoulder.
WHAT TO DO:
- Think about keeping your shoulder blades down and back.
2. Avoid Moving Through Spine
AVOID: Avoid moving through the spine.
Moving through the spine repetitively, especially when holding weight, can result in muscle strain, and over time, can damage the ligaments and discs that stabilize the spine.
WHAT TO DO:
You want the torso to remain still during the entire exercise, so that the movement is only at the shoulder joint.
3. Avoid Lifting Higher Than Shoulder
AVOID: Avoid lifting the arms higher than shoulder height.
- The reason for this is is that after you reach 90 degrees of shoulder flexion, the torque on the shoulder decreases, and the risk for impingement increases. The risk of injury outweighs the benefit. All this means is the movement feels easier (meaning it's not working the muscles as hard now), WHILE also being more likely to injure you. So basically a pointless idea eh!
WHAT TO DO:
- Lift only up to your shoulder height.
4. Avoid Straightening The Knees
AVOID: Straightening the knees
- Straightening the knees can make it difficult to keep your spine in neutral.
- Not maintaining a neutral spine position can lead to injury or muscle strain.
WHAT TO DO:
- Keep a soft bend in the knees
5. Avoid Bending Wrists
AVOID: Bending your wrists.
- Poor alignment (bent forward or backward) or repetitive movement through the wrist can lead to joint and/or soft tissue irritation or injury over time.
WHAT TO DO:
- Your wrists should be in line with your forearm and should be still throughout the exercise.
VARIATIONS OF Band Front Raises
Neutral grip / thumbs up
Neutral Grip / Hammer Front Raise
A neutral grip aka hammer grip is when you have your palms face each other as you lift up. That is the only difference for this variation.
This is a good option if:
- using a pronated palms-down grip causes any discomfort during or after the exercise
- you have increased kyphosis (thoracic hump) due to osteoporosis
- you have a history of shoulder pain due to osteoarthritis, impingement, or rotator cuff pathology (tendonitis, tendonosis, tears).
Chest muscle focus front raise
This variation gets the pectoral (chest) muscles a bit more involved. As you lift the dumbbell up in front of you, you will move the arm on a slight angle towards the middle of your body.
At the top of the movement, your hand should be close to the middle of the chest. This will activate the muscles of the chest (pectoralis major, coracobrachialis) in addition to the muscles that raise the arm up.
It is important to make sure that you are keeping your chest open and your shoulders back - do not round your shoulders or your upper back.
MAKING RESISTANCE BANd Front RaiseS MORE CHALLENGING
Slow Eccentric Banded Front Raise
This involves lowering the band verrrrry slowly. Take between 5-10 seconds to lower the band for each rep. Moving upwards will still be the same pace as usual.
This works the muscles differently - they will have to stay active for a longer period of time; trains muscle endurance.
Iso Hold banded front delt raise
Doing isometric holds during an exercise works on muscle endurance, by keeping the muscle under tension for a longer period of time. This also helps to fully fatigue the muscle which we want.
To do an iso hold, pause mid-way and at 90 degrees of flexion (at shoulder height) for 3-5 seconds before lowering the band.
One arm banded front raise
One side at a time with bands. This will allow you to focus on one arm and make sure you are feeling the correct muscles working.
It will work the core muscles differently - the obliques and the quadratus lumborum will be more active to stabilize against one side of the body being loaded.
MAKE THE Band Front Raise MORE DOABLE
Alternating banded front raise
Alternating front raises will allow you to focus on one arm and make sure you are feeling the correct muscles working. It will work the core muscles differently - the obliques and the quadratus lumborum will be more active to stabilize against one side of the body being loaded. This variation can be used in a number of ways:
- To allow each arm a rest between reps: non-working arm remains by your side. Complete one rep with the other side. Rest that arm by the side and complete rep with the other arm.
- To work the anterior deltoid isometrically as well as concentrically and eccentrically. Raise one arm up to parallel with the floor, hold the position. Raise the other arm up to parallel, lower the first arm down, then lower the second arm down.
Seated on chair banded front raise
This is a good option if you have difficulty with maintaining good posture, or balance. It may allow you to lift heavier bands with the arms because the core will not have to work as hard to stabilize the torso.
Stability ball banded front raise
This is a good option if you have difficulty maintaining good posture, but you would like to work on strengthening your core muscles and improving your balance. Sit on a stability ball with both feet flat on the floor. Put the feet close together to challenge your balance, further apart if you are unable to maintain your balance.
WHAT & WHY
BENEFITS OF TRAINING THE Front DELT
This will train the front part of the largest muscle in the shoulder - the deltoid. We (who I am kidding? Not we - I should say they - the sciency workout people - call this front area of the muscle the anterior deltoid. People more like us call it the front delt. Or maybe just the front of the shoulder eh!
Our arms are lifted up until they are level with your shoulders and then slowly lowered back down with control. The front part of the deltoid muscle will work in two different ways:
- while you lift the arm (concentric) and
- also while you lower the arm (eccentric)
WHY DO WE EVEN CARE?
THIS MUSCLE DOES MOST THE WORK TO MOVE OUR ARMS EVERY DAY
The shoulder has one big muscle that is most responsible for moving the arm - that is the deltoid muscle. This muscle will get help from other muscles - but it does most of the work. Different parts of the muscle will lift the arm in different directions - the front part of the deltoid lifts the arm out to the front of the body. We lift or hold our arms out to the front all day long. Exercising the front deltoid will improve our ability to lift, hold and carry heavy objects.
HELPS PREVENT SHOULDER INJURIES
All of the parts of the deltoid muscle have to work together to protect the shoulder joint from damage, and exercising the this muscle in a safe way can help prevent shoulder injuries.
SAFER WAY TO TRAIN THIS MUSCLE
The front delt raise is one of the easiest and safest exercises for targeting this part of the muscle. This is a great way to train this muscle without raising our arms overhead which tends to become more problematic for women like us over 40. Not saying we shouldn't do it, just that we have to be more cautious about it and it may no longer be the main thing we do all the time.
So because this movement only brings out arms to shoulder height it is a safer position for us, less likely to cause injury or inflammation.
It is also very easy to modify the exercise to make it more or less challenging.
EVERYDAY LIFE &
HOW WE USE OUR ANTERIOR DELTOID MUSCLES IN EVERYDAY LIFE
1. LIFTING ARM STRAIGHT UP IN FRONT OF BODY (FROM SHOULDER JOINT)
This muscle is used for lifting all items in front of the body when the movement comes from the shoulder (as opposed to bending the elbow) - meaning your elbow is raising into the air to some degree in front of you.
- Lifting a jug of milk out of the fridge
- Lifting a pan from the oven
And many renovating skills!
- Spray painting
- Painting walls with rollers & paint brushes
- Slapping on drywall mud to fix those holes in the walls when your grown kids move out.
- Hammering a nail into a wall above you to hang that adorable picture of your 3 year old daughter/ granddaughter.
2. ROTATE ARM INWARD AT THE SHOULDER (INTERNAL SHOULDER ROTATION)
I found this one hard to understand myself when I was first learning it. The best way I can explain it is hold the top of your opposite shoulder with your fingers. The arm of the shoulder you're holding is just resting at your side with your elbow bent. Now move that elbow away from you out to the side/a little to the front. When you do this, what you feel happening with your fingers at your shoulder is your arm bone internally rotating in the shoulder joint.
Examples (if you do these things with moving your elbow outwards):
- Turning a screwdriver
- Turning off a water spigot
- Cleaning - wiping down counters with a sponge where you're moving in clockwise motions.
3. HOLDS ARM BONE IN SHOULDER JOINT AGAINST DOWNWARD PULLS
When the arm is hanging straight down by the side and holding a weight, the deltoid as a whole helps to hold the arm in the shoulder joint against the downward pull of the weight.
If the muscles didn't do this, the weight of what we held could pull the arm bone down in the joint and stretch out the ligaments and soft tissues that help to stabilize the joint. An unstable joint (sloppy movement in the joint) can lead to wear on the bony surfaces, and eventually pain, limited movement and weakness.
- Carrying groceries
- Carrying buckets
4. HOLDING ARMS OUT IN FRONT OF YOU FOR SUSTAINED LENGTHS OF TIME
The muscle also holds the arm in front of you for longer periods of time - this is called being in a position of flexion, for activities such as reaching and turning - a key, doorknob, spigot faucet, lightbulb, wrench, screwdriver. Especially when turning the arm inwards at the same time. Also used for carrying items in the front for long periods of time:
- Your kiddo/grandkiddo
- Laundry basket,
- Boxes held from underneath as we traipse from the living room up the stairs to the attic to keep all those keepsakes forever
SPIFFILICIOUS FACTS ABOUT MUSCLES & MOVES
This is a good exercise for isolating the anterior portion of the deltoid muscle. The movement is isolated to the shoulder joint in the sagittal plane (moving straight forwards and back down). In this position, there will be minimal contribution from the pectoralis major, coracobrachialis, and biceps brachii - most of the effort will come from the anterior deltoid.
ALLLL MUSCLES & WHEN
ALL MUSCLES WORKING & WHEN DURING THE Band Front Raise
The core stabilizers work to hold the spine in a neutral position throughout the exercise.
The movement of the arms begins with the arm straight down to the side. The scapular stabilizers hold the shoulder blades down and in. The anterior deltoid along with the biceps, coracobrachialis, and upper fibers of the pectoralis major contract concentrically to lift the arm straight up in front of the body, until the arm is parallel to the floor.
The muscles of the forearm will work isometrically to hold the wrist in a neutral position against the downward pull of the dumbbell.
The anterior deltoid, biceps brachii, coracobrachialis, and superior fibers of the pectoralis major work eccentrically to lower the arm back down to the starting position.