How To Do Seated Behind The Neck Press Properly

The seated behind the neck press is a variation of the overhead press and is effective in building shoulder muscle and strength.

Its history dates from way back when body builders and strength athletes used it to work their shoulders. With time, the exercise has lost its popularity due to the injury risks associated with it.

This has made it among the most controversial exercises, with some trainers completely banning it from their routines while others continue on its emphasis.

While it is possible to do the seated behind the neck press exercise safely, it is not recommended to those without a fair amount of shoulder mobility. Such people are advised to try out its other alternatives.

This article will teach you everything you need to know about the seated behind the neck press exercise.

HOW TO DO SEATED BEHIND THE NECK PRESS PROPERLY

Below is a step-by-step guide on how to perform this exercise effectively and safely.

While standing, begin by setting up the barbel to about shoulder height and proceed to load your desired weight on to it.

Position an adjustable bench beneath the bar and have it in an upright position.

Sit on the bench and using a pronated grip, remove the bar from the rack.

Breath out, brace, tuck in your chin and proceed to slowly lower the bar to the back of your neck.

Breath out and slowly press the bar back to lockout.

This is one reap. Stop for a count and repeat for the desired number of reps.

SEATED BEHIND THE NECK PRESS TIPS TO CONSIDER

For the top movement, reach tall and don not worry about having your shoulders packed down and back.

Allow your elbows the freedom to rotate outward while performing the top movement. However, consider tucking them in to the ribcage at the bottom.

Try your best to prevent the bar from rolling your wrists into extension. Instead, try rolling your knuckles towards the ceiling.

If you feel any discomfort on your shoulders during this movement, try doing it with a wider grip and monitor if the pain persists.

If it does, it is advisable that you try other alternatives listed later in this article.

SEATED BEHIND THE NECK PRESS COMMON MISTAKES TO AVOID

Avoid gripping the bar with a very wide grip or a very narrow one as this could stress your shoulders. Aim at keeping your elbows 90 degrees to the bar.

When performing the downward step, avoid jerky movement as this could lead to serious shoulder injuries. Instead, use slow and controlled movements throughout the exercise.

Avoid performing this exercise as the first one in your training routine as this could cause serious shoulder muscle cramps.

Instead, start by warming up your shoulders adequately before proceeding to it.

If you are a beginner, avoid getting the bar all the way as this could lead to further injuries. Instead, have it slightly close to the bottom position.

Avoid using the barbells for this exercise if they are uncomfortable as this could lead to injuries. Instead, go for dumbbells which are easier to work with.

SEATED BEHIND THE NECK PRESS MUSCLES WORKED

FRONT DELTOIDS

Also known as anterior deltoids, these muscles help to move your arm forward. Since they connect to your clavicle bone, they are helpful in day-to-day activities such as reaching for things on a shelf.

LATERAL DELTOIDS

These are side deltoids and serve to move the arm to the side as well as up and down. They come in handy in daily activities such as performing jumping jacks.

POSTERIOR DELTOIDS

Also called rear delts these facilitate the backward movement of the arm. They help in sporty activities such as pitching a baseball.

TRAPEZIUS

Commonly known as traps, the trapezius is a large muscle located in the in your back and starts at the back of your neck, extending across your shoulders and finally ends in the middle back.

This muscle serves to provide your body with good posture and movement. Additionally, it helps you to shrug your shoulders, tilt your head and twisting your torso.

TRICEP

The triceps brachii is a large and thick muscle that is located at the dorsal part of your upper arm. It appears as a horse shoe on the posterior of the arm and mainly serves to extend the arm.

SERRATUS

Also known as the serratus anterior, this muscle’s main part lies deep under the scapula and pectoral muscles.

It serves as the main mover in the scapular protraction.

SEATED BEHIND THE NECK PRESS BENEFITS

This controversial exercise comes with many benefits, some of which include

STRONGER SHOULDERS

The angle path of the bar used in this routine will challenge your shoulders in a great range while also strengthening it in new ways.

It is a great exercise for developing over the head strength. Stronger shoulders will in turn enable you to do movements such as: lifting, pushing, punching and pulling.

Great shoulder development will also reduce the risk of injury and pain.

CREATES MUSCLE MASS

This exercise is programmed for hypertrophy and is a great mass builder for both your shoulders and upper back.

IMPROVES SHOULDER STABILITY

As mentioned earlier, this exercise is a great routine for developing full overhead stability and very solid shoulders.

SEATED BEHIND THE NECK PRESS ALTERNATIVES

Consider adding these alternatives in place of the seated behind the neck press exercise to avoid redundancy.

PIKE PUSHUPS

This alternative to seated behind the neck press is a combination of downward facing dog and dolphin pose and can be used to build major strength.

You can also use it as a stepping stone to the harder moves such as the seated behind the neck press.

SOTTS PRESS

This alternative will serve to bring out the instability and immobility in weak upper back muscles.

It is an exercise for building stability and mobility.

TAKE AWAY

Inasmuch as there is controversy around the seated behind the neck press exercise, if you have great shoulder mobility, then you have nothing to worry about.