Walk into the gym, and you instantly have exercise options too numerous to count. Heck, you’ll find a whopping 100+ different shoulder exercises on this site alone!
So…which one do you do? Plenty of people go the “as many of them as possible” route, but that takes a major time commitment and the willingness to train for an hour or more nearly every day without exception. The rest of us—those who want to spend our time playing sports or just, well, playing—have to be more selective.
Whether you’re looking for the ingredients for a perfect total-body workout, or you’d just like to cherry-pick a move or two to insert into your current routine, this list of essential exercises has you covered. Get stronger at them, and you will get stronger, period. Use them in a muscle-growth rep range of 8-12 reps per set, and you will get more muscular (provided you’re eating enough).
Seriously, training doesn’t have to be complicated. Get better at these six movements first, and see how far they can take you!