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Single Arm Overhead Press 2023

The single-arm overhead press is a strength training workout that targets your arm and shoulder muscles, specifically the deltoids, triceps, and upper back. This training exercise also engages the core to enhance your overall stability. 

Athletes and fitness enthusiasts who wish to enhance their upper-body strength and power should include this workout in their exercise routines.

For those in the Army, this exercise (picture above) is performed much like the overhead press, using only one arm at a time. The range of motion and resistance is decreased for the injured side

The single-arm overhead press is used to maintain a heavy resistance on the good side and/or to reduce the resistance on the injured side.

How to perform the Single-Arm Overhead Press

We will go over how to do the Single Arm Overhead Press.

Pressing a dumbbell over your head may not seem like a glamorous exercise, but it’s one of the most effective exercises for building defined shoulders, sleek arms, and the abs you want.

  1. First, get a dumbbell and place it at shoulder height.

    Keep your core nice and tight, knees slightly bent, with your hips right underneath you. Then, press the dumbbell straight up overhead.

  2. Because you have a dumbbell on one side, don’t let yourself lean to that side.

    Keep your core tight, and then slowly lower the weight under control. Repeat this for 10 repetitions.

  3. Keep your body in a nice straight line, core tight, supporting the weight.

    Control the weight as you lower it. This exercise will give you defined shoulders, sleek arms, and a flat stomach.

Benefits of Single Arm Overhead Press

Improving shoulder strength and stability 

  • The single-arm overhead press is a workout primarily focused on your deltoid muscles, which are responsible for the definition and roundness of your shoulders. 
  • You can strengthen your shoulders and improve your overall stability as you continue to spend time on this workout, reducing the likelihood of injuries during sports or day-to-day activities.

Improving upper body power & strength

  • This workout engages other muscles in your upper body, they include your triceps and upper back muscles. 
  • This compound movement will improve your upper body strength and power, enabling you to lift and push heavier loads effectively.

Core activation and stability

  • This workout exercise engages your core muscles, improving your overall balance and core stability. 
  • The Single Arm Overhead Press workout also works your obliques, abdominal, and deep core muscles, improving overall fitness.

Cons of this Workout Exercise

Susceptibility to Injury

  • You must be in the proper form while doing the single-arm overhead press to avoid injuries. For example, you must keep your spine neutral and execute controlled and fluid movements; otherwise, you may get neck, shoulder, or lower back injuries.

Limited muscle activation 

  • Even though the single-arm overhead press focuses mainly on your triceps, shoulders, and upper back, it does not engage many other muscle groups in your body. 
  • If you are looking for an effective upper body workout, you must combine this workout with bicep, chest, and lower back exercises.

Worked muscles in Single-Arm Overhead Press 

Deltoids are the primary muscle group you engage in the Single Arm Overhead Press workout. These muscles are responsible for shoulder flexion and abduction.

The triceps are the muscles located at the back of your upper arms. They help you when you are extending the elbow.

Upper back muscles; The single-arm overhead press workout can also engage your upper back muscles, including the trapezius and rhomboids, and help with stabilizing your shoulder blades.

Core muscles; This workout exercise will activate your core muscles, including the obliques and abdominals, helping you to maintain stability and posture.


If you are looking for an effective workout to improve shoulder strength along with upper body power, the Single Arm Overhead Press is a great option to consider. By adhering to correct form and technique, you can avoid injuries. 

George N.