Upper body exercises are important exercises to do. Whenever you go to reach, push, pull or lift something, your upper body plays an important role in how well (or not) you perform.
Upper body exercises are also important to do because they allow your upper to be fit and in shape. So, upper body exercises help us in our daily functional activities and they give us that boost of confidence we need when we look in the mirror and see awesome definition in our chest, shoulders, arms and back!
Here are three of my favorite beginner to intermediate exercises for a fit upper body. All of these exercises and pictures are taken from our great friends at Pt On the Net of which I am an Ambassador for them.
Upper Body Push Exercise: Bosu Ball Push-UP
The push up has been around since the beginning of time. Guess what, it’s not going anywhere either, lol! It is probably the king of upper body exercises as it works an array of muscles. A few of them include your chest, shoulders and arms.
Here is the correct way to do the Bosu ball push up:
- Ensure that the hands are in line vertically with the shoulders, that the hips are horizontally in line with knees/shoulders, and that the feet are shoulder-width apart.
- Grip the edge of the Bosu ball with the flat side facing up (as shown in the above pictures).
- Ensure a firm grip on the edge, and with a *straight body line – perform a push-up (*note: this can also be done with the knees on the ground)
- Perform the desired number of repetitions.
Upper Body Pull Exercise: DB Row on Stability Ball
The DB Row on the Stability Ball is an excellent way to work those major back muscles like your rhomboids and lats to name a few. Using the ball adds an extra challenge to your balance and core.
Here is the correct way to do the DB Row on the Stability Ball:
- Position the feet straight, keep butt tight, ‘neutral’ spine angles, shoulder blades down and together, and chin tucked for good neck posture like pictures above.
- Activate your stomach by drawing in your belly button to your lower back.
- Lie face down with your lower abs/hips on the ball, feet against a wall (if necessary) and proper alignment.
- Choose light dumbbells and perfect the technique before moving to a heavier load.
- Start with the dumbbells under the chest in line with the ground.
- Row the weight up with both arms, keeping the elbows wide.
- The shoulder blades should squeeze together gradually as you row the weight, then unsqueeze as you lower the weight slowly.
- Keep the stomach and butt tight to avoid lower back discomfort.
Upper Body Lift Exercise: Standing DB Shoulder Press
The Standing DB Press is a good exercise for working your deltoid (shoulder) muscles. If you have ever had a hard time lifting things over head and placing them somewhere, this is a great upper body exercise to help with that.
Here is the correct way to do the Standing DB Shoulder Press:
- Position feet shoulder width apart, pointing straight ahead like pictures above
- Keep your stomach drawn in to your lower back and make sure your back is not arching or rounding
- Start with the dumbbells at shoulder height, palms facing forward.
- While maintaining total body alignment, push the dumbbells overhead until your arms are straight, but, elbows are not locked.
- AVOID letting your back arch at ANYTIME (this may indicate tightness in the lats and a stretching program should precede loading of this exercise, see my blog on lower back exercise to help).
Upper body exercises are once again, important to do. The three that I just gave you are a great routine to getting a strong and great looking upper body. If you would like help with designing your upper body exercise routine, please contact me here.