Lever Low W-Press

Very few of you will be familiar with an exercise called the Dumbbell W-Press. It seems to have been heralded from the Vince Gironda, AKA Iron Guru, training camp during the 1950's and 60's and was famously used by bodybuilders including Larry Scott and later Arnold Schwarzenegger, amongst others. It's not only a great exercise for developing the lateral head of the deltoids (shoulders), but is also very kind on the shoulder complex as a whole. It involves pressing two relatively light dumbbells (note: slightly greater than you'd use for dumbbell lateral raises) from by your shoulders with elbows tucked in (forming a w-shape appearance with your two arms) to above head (high version) or out to your sides above shoulder height (low version).

The Lever Low W-Press variant is a 21st century Gym Professor twist on what is a fantastic and near forgotten exercise. Landmines (dual-pivoting lever arm) are fairly commonplace in gyms now and are ideal for this exercise; alternatively, using a bar with one end anchored against a wall will work fine. The lever provides a comfortable low w-press arc to tax the deltoids and also a strong requirement from the rotator cuff muscles to stabilise the shoulder.

Choose an appropriate weight. Raise the non-anchored end of the bar from the floor, taking it to your shoulders. Hold the bar with one hand and turn side-on (90 degrees) to the bar to assume the start position, as shown in figure 1. Extend the elbow to press outward and upward (figure 2). Return to the start position and repeat.

Check out the video, below, for a demonstration and a good superset to try.

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Matt AKA Gym Professor