The anterior deltoid, also known as the front delt, is one of three muscles that make up the deltoid muscle group. The other two muscles are the lateral deltoid and the posterior deltoid. As their names suggest, the anterior, lateral, and posterior delts are located at the front, side, and back of the deltoid, respectively. The anterior delt mainly functions as a flexor of the shoulder, which moves the humerus, or arm bone, in the forward and upward direction. To stretch the anterior delt, you must perform the opposite movement, which is shoulder extension, and maintain the extended position. You should do one to two stretches for your anterior delt following your shoulder or chest workouts.
Wall Anterior Deltoid Stretch
Stand about a foot away from the wall, facing away from it.
Extend your shoulders to bring your arms back.
Put your hands on the wall with your inner forearms facing downward, elbows extended.
Lean forward a bit at the waist and bend your knees slightly.
Hold this stretched position for 15 to 30 seconds, take a one minute rest period, then repeat the stretch for two additional sets.
Seated Anterior Deltoid Stretch
Sit on the floor with your knees bent.
Move your arms back by extending your shoulders.
Place your hands on the floor with your inner forearms facing forward.
Lean your torso slightly forward.
Maintain this stretched position for 15 to 30 seconds, take a one minute break, and then do the stretch for two more sets.
- When you perform the stretches, you will also be stretching the pectoralis major clavicular head, biceps brachii short head, biceps brachii long head and lateral deltoid. You are thus likely to feel the stretch in these muscle groups. To maximize the stretch on the anterior deltoid and to concentrate most of your efforts on this muscle, you may need to adjust your hand positioning on the wall or floor, and the degree to which you lean your torso forward during the stretches. Also, you can minimize the stretch on the two heads of the biceps brachii by bending your elbows a bit during the stretches.
- Do not stretch your front delts prior to your shoulder or chest workouts as that may hinder your performance. Rather, do the stretching movements at the conclusion of those workouts.
Richard Choueiri is a fitness and nutrition expert and the author of "The Human Statue Workout." He began writing professionally in 2007 and his work has been featured in Bodybuilding.com and "Physique Magazine." Choueiri studied exercise science and nutritional science at Rutgers University. He holds an American College of Sports Medicine CPT, and a National Exercise and Sports Trainers Association CMMACC.