Dumbbell Military Press

Exercise Information

  • Alternative Names: Db military press, seated dumbbell military press
  • Type: Strength
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Equipment: Dumbbell
  • Muscles Targeted: Shoulders, triceps, traps
  • Mechanics: Compound
  • Average Number of Sets: 6-10 with 5-10 reps each, rest 2 min between sets
  • Variations: Standing dumbbell military press
  • Alternative: Barbell shoulder press, Smith machine overhead shoulder press, handstand push-ups

The dumbbell military press is one of the most common upper body exercises used for developing big shoulders. Unlike basic military press, the dumbbell version is performed sitting on a flat bench and is suitable for those with lower back issues. The dumbbell military press should be performed after warming up thoroughly especially when you are attempting heavier lifts.

Dumbbell Military Press Exercise Information

  • Alternative Names: Db military press, seated dumbbell military press
  • Type: Strength
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Equipment: Dumbbell
  • Muscles Targeted: Shoulders, triceps, traps
  • Mechanics: Compound
  • Average Number of Sets: 6-10 with 5-10 reps each, rest 2 min between sets
  • Variations: Standing dumbbell military press
  • Alternative: Barbell shoulder press, Smith machine overhead shoulder press, handstand push-ups

How to do a Dumbbell Military Press

Hold a pair of dumbbells (weighing about 50-120 lbs) and sit on a flat bench with back support, placing the weights on top of the thighs. Push your thighs to move the dbs up to your shoulder level at each side. Rotate your wrists to the pronated position and press the weights up until they make slight contact at the top. Pause for 1-2 sec before coming down back to the initial position.

Db Military Press Tips

  • If you are experienced in lifting heavier weights, you can grab the dumbbells with a false grip for additional strength.
  • Make sure to keep the back flat against the support throughout the exercise.
  • If you feel stress in your traps or neck during the exercise, then try to increase your thoracic spine extension to improve shoulder flexion.

Variation

The standing dumbbell military press, as the name suggests, is performed in the standing position. It helps you build each side of the body equally and gives a balanced physique.

Alternative Exercises

  • Barbell Shoulder Press
  • Smith Machine Overhead Shoulder Press
  • Handstand Push-Ups

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