X3 Overhead Press
Start with the bar about chin level for the overhead press, and push it over your head. And you’ll notice the model will pull their shoulders back as much as possible. I call it “head through the window.” So, this is not the top. This is the top.
You want to make sure you get the strongest contraction in the deltoid. And you’ll feel it when you go through the movement. As you progress through the exercise, you want to repeat each repetition in a slow and controlled manner.
To perform the overhead press, you want the hands pronated, grabbing onto the bar. Make sure the band’s running midfoot, under the ground plate. So with the band under the channel of the ground plate, you want the band in the middle. The middle of the foot should then be centered over the band.
Then, you step onto the ground plate with your feet shoulder-width apart. You want to squat down to get the bar. Bring the bar up to shoulder height, and then stand up. Now, you’re ready for the movement. So, as you can see, Kyle’s motion is slow and controlled.
2 to 3 seconds up, 2 to 3 seconds down.
There’s tremendous force at the top of the exercise as Kyle’s pressing. But much less stress on the lower portion of the movement where the joint is compromised. Many people complain of shoulder pain. I mentioned it with the chest press and also with the overhead press. And this is from the same limitations of joint being exposed to potential injury because of the range of motion.
When we are using so much more weight up here versus right here, variable resistance solves that problem. So it’s very safe, but still, you want to stay with a minimum of 15 slow and controlled repetitions.
Notice how Kyle is not locking out at the top or resting at the bottom. You want to maintain constant tension so that you reach total fatigue of muscle in all ranges of motion. Keep in mind you cannot do this with weight.
Also, by keeping constant tension, you have to keep in mind that you’re not turning the muscle on, turning it off, and then turning it on again, which is one of the common problems with regular weight lifting.
By keeping the muscles switched on through the entire movement, you’re showing a true tissue deficit. And a true deficit of the different fuel systems within the muscle. Which stimulate both, to be amplified in the future via adaptation.
Observe the head at the top of the movement. It’s almost like he’s putting his head through the window. So, the arms come up, forming a rectangle. And Kyle’s rotating his shoulders back to get the biggest squeeze in the deltoid possible, which makes it look like he’s putting his head through that rectangle.
You have to do this. This is very important. Because it’s the true maximum contraction of the deltoid, which we will be taking to fatigue in the rest of the ranges of motion.
That’s going to create the greatest growth stimulus.
Now, notice the diminishing range as Kyle begins to be unable to get to the fully contracted position. He’s doing shorter and shorter repetitions until he goes to absolute fatigue.
If you’re unable to perform a minimum of 15 of these repetitions, you could do the overhead press from a kneeling position, which puts less tension on all muscles involved.
If you’re not strong enough to do it from the standing position, start this way. You’ll graduate to the standing position very soon after.
Sometimes individuals will start to increase the repetition speed so they can break a personal record. Don’t do that. The problem is you break form; you get sloppy. That’s when you’re more likely to hurt yourselves. It’s better to do less repetitions but completely fatigue the muscle.
I say this all the time; your objective is exhausting the muscle. It’s not getting one more repetition, necessarily. Yes, you should count repetitions. But, you just want to fatigue the muscle as much as it can possibly be fatigue. So, you’re also going to do diminishing range in this one.
So as with all of the X3 movements, you’re going to shorten the repetitions and do as many partials as you can before finally completing the movement.