shoulder press - seated or standing

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Matt Z
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Post by Matt Z » Mon May 11, 2009 4:43 pm

I sometimes substitute standing One-arm Dumbbell Presses for Barbell Military Presses (also standing). I'm also fond of the One-arm Dumbbell Clean and Press (a Power Clean followed by a strict Press).


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Post by frogbyte » Mon May 11, 2009 5:44 pm

You can standing press more with one arm than you can lift and curl with two arms? Or do you just do the Power Clean for the heck of it?

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Post by Matt Z » Mon May 11, 2009 7:46 pm

For One-arm Dumbbell Presses I just lift the dumbbell to my shoulder with two hands and perform rep out. Meanwhile, I usually perform the One-arm Dumbbell Clean and Press as a combination lift (1 Clean + 1 Press = 1 Rep). In either case the actually press is the limiting factor.

PS) Lately, I've been doing more of the latter.

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Post by pdellorto » Mon May 11, 2009 7:57 pm

I've been teaching beginners the dumbbell curl-and-press. They seem to "get it" a bit easier than the clean and press. If it gets heavy, I move into the push press.

To the original question, I'm with Matt. If you don't care much about what you can lift outside the gym but want big delts, either is okay. If you do, mostly stick with standing. But I've actually been tasked with sitting kettlebell presses - sitting on the ground, not a bench - and I've done steep incline bench presses that look more like a slightly layed back seated shoulder press. That's in training aimed at a standing athlete. It's all good for something...which is probably why Ironman is advocating mixing things up!

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Post by Han » Mon May 11, 2009 8:16 pm

When first changing over to a full body workout, and after reading this forum a fair bit, I chose standing military presses as I was under the impression that standing was better for recruiting your abs and lower back for stabilisation.

Is this understanding correct?

PS, I am also wondering if maybe it is standing overhead pressing that is causing my ongoing back stiffness. A bit more experimentation has revealed that I am fine after a squat/bench/row workout. It's the dead lift/OHP/chin work-out that does it. And I am sure I am not rounding or hyperextending on deadlifts.


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Post by robertscott » Tue May 12, 2009 5:59 am

hmm well I am interested in real world strength, so I think I'll generally stick to standing...

having said that summer's on it's way so I may do it seated for the next wee while, got to get those beach muscles up to scratch

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Post by TimD » Tue May 12, 2009 8:42 am

Just a comment on Pete's idea of "curl and press".. It's a good idea, and back in the day was done a lot. It's actually what Dan John calls a power curl, or reverse grip clean. Take the DB's from the floor and get them to the shoulders. Much easier for beginner's, with DB's or BB's.
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Post by hoosegow » Tue May 12, 2009 10:14 am

It is what TimD and Calvin Cooledge used to do, eh? :lol:

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Post by TimD » Tue May 12, 2009 10:33 am

Nah, Cal's just a young wet behind the ears whippersnapper.
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Post by pdellorto » Tue May 12, 2009 4:06 pm

TimD wrote:Just a comment on Pete's idea of "curl and press".. It's a good idea, and back in the day was done a lot. It's actually what Dan John calls a power curl, or reverse grip clean. Take the DB's from the floor and get them to the shoulders. Much easier for beginner's, with DB's or BB's.
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Steal from the best, that's my method.

Here is Smitty from Dieselcrew demonstrating the one-arm version:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lbTlcX2C5Rw

Since right now I'm working with very young beginners, and I'm no O-lift expert, I'm using curl-and-press as one of our mainstay exercises. It's super-easy to coach and execute. Get to the shoulder, I don't care if you "cheat" it up (power curl, fine, it's halfway to a clean), press it overhead, if it's heavy, push-press it. It's a good combo.

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Post by Jungledoc » Tue May 12, 2009 4:20 pm

Han wrote:PS, I am also wondering if maybe it is standing overhead pressing that is causing my ongoing back stiffness. A bit more experimentation has revealed that I am fine after a squat/bench/row workout. It's the dead lift/OHP/chin work-out that does it. And I am sure I am not rounding or hyperextending on deadlifts.
It is sure possible for standing shoulder presses to cause low back problems. I think it's mostly because the danger isn't as intuitively obvious as it is with with squats, DLs, etc. You need to not only watch back position, strongly splint your back by keeping your abs and back muscles tight throughout the lift.

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Post by tmaximus89 » Thu May 21, 2009 11:06 pm

Sitting is good...
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