The 6 Best Elastic Shoulder Exercises at Home

Some people have a natural advantage in gaining muscle, while others spend hours training to grow a single muscle fiber. However, aside from natural ability, many beginners to strength training don't know how to properly lift a weight or how many reps they should do in each set.

In addition, some muscle groups are more difficult to develop than others. And that's the case with the one we're talking about today. More than any other group, you need to choose the best shoulder exercises with elastic. Considered a weak joint, it is best to properly develop shoulder definition by focusing on form rather than weight or strength.

Fortunately, beginners can get by with a few basic moves to get great shoulders. This article will teach you how to broaden them with a technical description of the best movements for the muscles of the scapular complex according to their anatomical division into 3 fascicles.

Anatomy of the shoulder muscles

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The deltoids

shoulder exercises - deltoid muscles
You have to work the 3 beams of the shoulder

The deltoids owe their name to the Greek word delta (triangle), since this muscle group consists of three main groups: anterior, middle and posterior. They are arranged in the shape of a triangle. The middle or acromial fascicle is the largest, which is why priority is usually given to training it.

The deltoids are located directly above the biceps at the point where the arm joins the trunk. It is precisely these muscles and partially the trapezius that people generally understand under the term "shoulder muscles". Each of these parts is responsible for one type of movement.

There is no one exercise that works the deltoids consistently and completely. Therefore, the shoulder workout should include several exercises that target all the fascicles of this group.

The trapezoids

Shoulder exercises with elastic for trapezius muscles

Although they are not shoulder muscles, the trapezius muscles play a role in most movements of this joint. They are made up of 3 fascicles: upper, middle and lower. The one that interests us during our shoulder session is mainly the upper portion, and to a lesser extent the middle fascicle. The rest works during the sessions for the back.

The upper and middle trapezius belongs to the neck and shoulder. Its upper fascicle inserts into the clavicle. It contributes in particular to lowering or raising the shoulders, which is of particular interest to us in this article.

You should work this part at the end of the session, after the deltoids.

The best shoulder exercises with elastic

It is fairly easy to shape the shoulders, but it is difficult to increase their volume. In general, training begins with fundamental movements such as the military press or lateral raises. These movements make it possible to make the more massive shoulders.

From an anatomical standpoint, these movements are a must. And if your goal is to gain not only muscle mass, but also broad shoulders, you must also use other exercises for the anterior and posterior fascicles.

The posterior deltoid can be worked with lateral raises with the chest bent forward. This fascicle is also greatly solicited when you do rowing for the back.

The anterior can be developed with frontal lifts. It is also involved in pectoral training, for example in the bench press (dumbbells or bar) or standing press (elastic bands). You must be careful with the inclined bench press, as the front of the shoulders is often overused.

Here are some recommended exercises for Strengthen your shoulders at home as well as indoors:

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1. Military bench press behind the neck and in front

You can find many videos of this exercise with a bar and discs on the Internet. But at home, I strongly advise you to use loop elastic bands instead to avoid the risk of injury.

Execution of the movement: Stand while contracting your buttocks and abs to limit the strain on your lumbar region. Raise your arms while exhaling until your arms are straight, then slowly lower them back down.

Note : These shoulder exercises with elastic band work the 3 portions of the deltoid. The pectoralis major and the long head of the triceps are somewhat solicited at the same time.

Here's my video that shows the back of the neck and front of the neck press with a loop band. At the end, you will also see the front raises that I will discuss in the next section.

2. Frontal elevations with a loop tape

Execution of the movement: Standing position as for the bench press with abs and buttocks contracted. The hands hold the rubber band in a neutral grip. You must raise your arms to the horizontal without locking your elbows, then return to the starting position while controlling the descent.

Note : You mainly target the anterior portion of the deltoid (front of the shoulders).

3. Lateral elevations with elastic tube

Execution of the movement: Use ankle braces with your wrists through them. Standing with your hands at your side, raise your arms as high as possible to the horizontal without locking your elbows.

Note : You are mainly working the middle portion of the deltoid.

Watch this video to see how to do this move:

Muscle gain with elastics

4. Standing pull with a rubber band

For the back of the shoulders, an exercise called the bird is often recommended. Whether it's with dumbbells or elastic bands, I find this one very uncomfortable because of the forward bent position.

Especially since it is very easy to train the posterior deltoids with a pulley or a rubber band at shoulder height. This movement requires only a relatively weak tension.

Execution of the movement: Standing position, feet at pelvis width, legs slightly bent for support. As always, you should contract the abdominal muscles and the buttocks. Elbows should be at shoulder height or slightly above during the whole series.

Note : You stress the posterior fascicle of the deltoid.

Here's a video to show you how:

Alternative: Another solution that I find less efficient is to do reverse fly. This is what you see on this picture:

Shoulder exercises with elastic - Reverse fly

5. Chin-up for the trapezius

This is one of my favorite exercises to end the session with. I used to end with the chin-up with an EZ bar when I was using bars and dumbbells. Today I use loop bands or a tube with handles. It's very easy (see video below).

Execution of the movement: As the name implies, the chin-up pull involves pulling the resistance up to the chin. Don't cheat by lowering your head 😉

Note : You will mainly work the upper trapezius if your hands are close enough. If you move them more than 20 cm apart, you will also work the deltoids. But it would be a pity if you have already tired them with the previous exercises.

6. Shrugs or shrugs of the shoulders

Since using the elastic bands, I have added shrugs to my toolbox. I find it to be the perfect exercise to finish off the trapezius.

Execution of the movement: For shrugs, simply take a piece of tape from each side and choose a strong enough resistance (see the following video). You will simply shrug your shoulders as if you were saying to someone "I don't know". Keep your head upright so you can feel the trapezius muscles working.

Note : Well, you are using the upper trapezius muscles as you have already understood. They are the ones that give volume to each side of the neck.

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To help you, here is a video that shows you the chin-up with 2 types of elastic bands. Next, I show you the shrugs:

How to increase shoulder width?

Since fast muscle fibers predominate in these muscles, they need to be pumped to get them bigger. This means performing exercises with light weights or low resistance and a high number of reps (12 to 20).

The width of the shoulders depends on genetic characteristics and the size of the clavicle. When bone growth stops, it becomes necessary to focus on the musculature to increase the impression of width.

The most important exercises to create powerful muscles are the military press and lateral raises, as they develop the middle portion of the deltoid. This visually increases the volume of the shoulders from the front and gives a more masculine silhouette.

However, to increase the width of the shoulder, you need to add movements that engage the anterior and posterior deltoids. In addition, working the trapezius muscles will give you volume on both sides of the neck.

Mistakes to avoid to build up the shoulders

Although shoulder training doesn't require much resistance, many focus only on performance. Unfortunately, this exposes the joints and ligaments to too much stress.

Remember that it is very easy to injure the shoulder, but it is extremely difficult to heal it completely. I unfortunately learned this the hard way and still have problems from improper training in my youth.

In addition, the importance of the anterior and posterior deltoids should not be overestimated. In general, each of these groups requires only one exercise. The main objective is to work the middle deltoid because it forms large and powerful shoulders.

Are side elevations dangerous?

Dumbbell lateral raises are often considered the most dangerous exercise for the shoulder joint. This is what screwed up my right shoulder, unfortunately. It's important to note that the risk is mainly due to poor execution or using too much weight. Always choose a weight that you can easily manage in a set of at least 12 reps.

It's even easier if you use an elastic band because you won't be able to get it all the way up if it's too hard for you. That being said, you still need to make sure the resistance is low enough to do your sets in good conditions. Aim for at least 12 to 15 reps per set. You can even do more to look for the burn.

Only increase the resistance if you are comfortable with the one you are currently using. If you do this, the lateral raises will not damage your shoulders.

Program for these shoulder exercises with elastic

Start by warming up your shoulders for a few minutes, for example by doing empty bench presses and shoulder rotations with your arms extended.

Military developed410 behind
10 in front
Frontal elevations412
Lateral elevations412 à 15
Posterior deltoid pull415 à 20
Chin up412 à 15
Shrugs or shrugs of the shoulders412 à 20

Our choice of elastic bands

If you are not equipped, I recommend one of the 2 elastic band kits from the European brand SmartWorkout. Not only are they attractively priced, but you get free access to 3 workout programs and videos. In addition, you get 20 % discount with this link. Here's what's included in the Elite Pack:

SW Elite Elastic Kit - EN
  • 7 natural latex 100 % tubes, which can provide up to 120 kg of resistance;
  • 1 bar with integrated fasteners for attaching rubber bands;
  • 2 non-slip silicone handles for a better grip;
  • 2 neoprene padded ankle straps;
  • 1 thick easy to install door anchor;
  • 4 unbreakable stainless steel carabiners;
  • 1 compact bag to carry the kit anywhere;
  • 3 free weight training programs included (Express, SmartGains, Strong & Beautiful);
  • 1 user guide.
ALSO READ:  The 10 Best Dumbbell Chest Exercises (With Videos)

You can also purchase the SmartWorkout Pro package which includes exactly the same items except for the bar (click on the link to learn more).

At Amazon, the choice is less interesting, but I have selected for you the best models available at the moment:

TheFitLife 150lbs Resistance Bands - Fitness Resistance Band...
GJELEMENTS Bodybuilding Elastics - Set of Resistance Bands...
TOMSHOO Resistance Bands 5 Resistance Bands + 1...
GJELEMENTS Elastic Bands for Bodybuilding - Set of Elastic Bands for...
TheFitLife 150lbs Resistance Bands - Fitness Resistance Band...
GJELEMENTS Resistance Bands - Set of Resistance Bands...
TOMSHOO Resistance Bands 5 Resistance Bands + 1...
GJELEMENTS Elastic Bands for Bodybuilding - Set of Elastic Bands for...
Our rating
Current price
35,99 €
Prix indisponible
46,99 €
49,99 €
TheFitLife 150lbs Resistance Bands - Fitness Resistance Band...
TheFitLife 150lbs Resistance Bands - Fitness Resistance Band...
Our rating
Current price
35,99 €
Click for more information
GJELEMENTS Bodybuilding Elastics - Set of Resistance Bands...
GJELEMENTS Bodybuilding Elastics - Set of Resistance Bands...
Our rating
Current price
Prix indisponible
Click for more information
TOMSHOO Resistance Bands 5 Resistance Bands + 1...
TOMSHOO Resistance Bands 5 Resistance Bands + 1...
Our rating
Current price
46,99 €
Click for more information
GJELEMENTS Elastic Bands for Bodybuilding - Set of Elastic Bands for...
GJELEMENTS Elastic Bands for Bodybuilding - Set of Elastic Bands for...
Our rating
Current price
49,99 €
Click for more information

Can we train the shoulders with other muscles?

The deltoids are considered a fairly independent muscle structure that does not involve the antagonist muscles. However, their training cannot be combined with the training of all muscle groups.

The shoulders do not combine well with back training and pecs because in all these cases the arms have to work hard. As a rule, "shoulder day" coincides with the leg training day. However, you can work the shoulders the same day as the biceps or triceps if you work them separately.

Conclusion on the shoulder exercises

The deltoid muscles of the shoulder girdle are composed of 3 independent groups. You need to do specific work for each of these groups, but the most important is the middle or acromial fascicle (the top of the shoulder).

This muscle group develops with good blood flow during training. The quality of this flow depends on the correct execution technique. It is recommended to work on technique first before increasing the resistance used.

The upper trapezius are important for aesthetics, but also because they contribute to shoulder work. Train them at the end of the session.

Leave a comment below to share your experience or ask your questions. THANK YOU !


How to build up your shoulders quickly?

This is precisely a trap to avoid. This fragile muscle group requires patience and perseverance. Rather than trying to develop them too quickly, tame them by working them with fairly low loads or resistance. Favour long enough sets of 12 to 20 repetitions.

How to build up your shoulders without equipment?

I must warn you, it is very complicated. Not impossible, of course, but the exercises require flexibility and not easy postures to hold like incline, decline and Hindu push-ups. In addition, especially for beginners, these movements put a lot of stress on the joints. I recommend using some equipment to work them safely.

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Last update on 2022-11-04 / Affiliate links / Some images are from the Amazon Product Advertising API

4 réflexions sur “Les 6 meilleurs exercices épaules avec élastique à la maison”

  1. Hello and thank you for your excellent work!
    I am 58 years old and a roofer. I had surgery on my right shoulder tendons a year ago and my surgeon was only able to reattach one!
    I have since lost the strength in my biceps
    what do you recommend as an exercise to rebuild myself!
    thank you for your good advice
    b delalande

    1. Hello Bruno,

      Thank you for your confidence. Your situation is too specific for me to tell you what exercises are appropriate for you. You need to ask your doctor or physical therapist what movements your joint can withstand without risk of injury.

      In any case, it is in your best interest to use low resistance elastic bands at first.

    1. Good question! The rule is always to exhale when you push and inhale when you pull.

      For example, in the military bench press, you have to breathe in while pushing up, and therefore breathe out while coming down. For all the others, you must inhale while pulling, thus during the effort and exhale during the release.

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