Front Raise

  • Alternative Names: Front raise, shoulder front raise, db front raise
  • Type: Strength
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Equipment: Dumbbells
  • Muscles Targeted: Shoulders
  • Mechanics: Isolation
  • Average Number of Sets: 3-5, each of 8-10 reps
  • Variations: Cable, barbell, plate, EZ bar, seated dumbbell, underhand, and incline front raises

The dumbbell front raise or simply the front raise is a basic free-weight training exercise suitable for beginners. It isolates your shoulder flexion and specifically targets the front deltoids. It also increases the stability through your shoulder joints. Although it is commonly performed with both arms simultaneously, you can do it by lifting one dumbbell at a time. For this reason, it is also called alternate front raise.


  • Uses your traps, rotator, and erector muscles as stabilizers and strengthens them.
  • Improves your functional ability thereby minimizing the risks of injuries while lifting a heavy item.
  • Strengthens your deltoids so that you can better perform pressing movements like dips, bench press, and strict press.

How to do Dumbbell Front Raise

Start the exercise by standing with a shoulder-width stance and holding a pair of dumbbells (weighing about 20 lbs) in front of your thighs so that the palms are facing your thighs (overhand grip). Raise the weights to the front and continue moving them upward until your upper arms are a little above parallel to the ground. Make sure to keep a slight bend on your elbows while the palms of your hands are facing down. After pausing for a second, lower the dumbbells back to the initial position.

Front Raise

Front Raise Tips

  • Make sure that you move only at your shoulders but keep the rest of the body as still as possible.
  • Use a lighter weight to practice and master the proper form.
  • Control the movement and avoid lowering the weights quickly.


  1. Cable Front Raise: Performed by replacing the pair of dumbbells using a low-pulley machine with cable attachment.
  2. Barbell Front Raise: Involves holding a barbell with a pronated grip and performing the same movement as the basic version.
  3. Front Plate Raise: Done by holding a weight plate with both hands and raising it slightly above the shoulder level.
  4. EZ Bar Front Raise: Performed by grabbing an EZ bar using a shoulder-wide overhand grip.
  5. Seated Dumbbell Front Raise: Done by assuming a seated position, and then lifting a pair of dumbbells just above your shoulder level.
  6. Underhand Front Raise: Performed in the same way as the basic version except that you hold the barbell or a pair of dumbbells using an underhand (supinated) grip.
  7. Incline Front Raise: Involves sitting down on an incline bench and then raising a pair of dumbbells.

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