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Providing the rounded profile for the shoulders, the deltoid muscle -- or the "delts" -- sits on top of the clavicle. Exercise instructions may refer to the deltoids by their three parts, the anterior, medial and the posterior deltoid, splitting the muscle into front, middle and back. While most shoulder exercises claim to target only one or two parts of the deltoid muscle, all shoulder exercises strengthen the whole muscle, giving it a well-rounded appearance.
Begin on your stomach on an exercise mat or on the floor. Stretch your legs behind you, pointing your toes at the wall. Rest your head on the floor, and flex your arms forward with your palms together. As you exhale, tighten your abdomen, slowly raising your legs and arms off the floor, keeping your limbs straight. Only raise your arms and legs a few inches; overextending can cause back or neck strain. Your body may want to rotate, and that is fine, but do not lift your head or arch your back. Hold the Superman position for a few seconds before inhaling and lowering your limbs.
Stability Ball Dumbbell Press
Hold a 1- to 5-pound dumbbell in each hand. Sit on a stability ball and walk forward until the ball falls under your shoulders and upper back. Make sure your bent knees form a 90-degree angle, your feet are shoulder-width apart and your hips are thrust upward. Start by bringing your shoulders down and then back, face your palms forward, and bring the dumbbells close to your chest and inhale. It's important to keep your wrists straight and in a neutral position to avoid injury.
As you press the dumbbells up, exhale, tightening your abdominal muscles. Slowly raise the dumbbells above your chest. Be careful not to lock your elbows, maintaining a shoulder-width distance with your hands.
Dumbbell Lateral Raise
Hold a pair of dumbbells -- 1 to 10 pounds -- with your arms resting at your sides, palms turned toward your body. Stand with your legs a few inches wider than hip-width apart. Tighten your abdominal muscles to stabilize your spine, align your head with your spine, and pull your shoulders back and down as you inhale. Press the dumbbells up and out the sides as you exhale. Your whole arm will move as one unit and will resemble a bird's flapping wing. Once the dumbbells are at shoulder level, inhale and slowly lower your arm. Keep your arms straight and your wrists neutral. Refrain from arching your back or rocking your body, as this may cause injury.
Supine Snow Angel
Lie with your knees bent, your back flat and your feet 12 inches from your glutes. Relax your arms with your palms facing up. Take deep, steady breaths for 30 seconds, pulling your upper body toward your hips. Refrain from arching your lower back or lifting your bottom. Slightly bend your arm at the elbow, keeping your upper arm touching the floor. As you exhale, gently glide the arms above your head until your fingertips meet. Inhale as you come down.