11 Bodyweight Rear Deltoid Exercises For Bigger Shoulders

rear deltoid exercises

Making your shoulders bigger and stronger from home takes a lot of hard work and consistency, with or without equipment such as dumbbells and kettlebells. Nevertheless, it is absolutely achievable. These bodyweight rear deltoid exercises can be done from the comfort of your home or wherever you like.

By following the exercises in this article, you can get shredded and strong shoulders right there in the comfort of your home. The exercise we will present to you is not fancy, they are simply effective. Their goal is simple – to put resistance and tension on your shoulders. In this way, they can tear up the muscle fibers up, allowing them to grow and become bigger and stronger.

These bodyweight rear deltoid exercises will also burn a lot of calories, so even if you don’t eat well (enough protein), at least, you’ll get tone and lean.

What Are Your Rear Delts?

The deltoid muscles in your shoulder are divided into three main fibers: anterior (front), lateral (side) and posterior (back) deltoids.

All three deltoid heads work together to stabilize the shoulder joint and move the arms in multiple directions. However, the rear delts work especially well to activate your arms back and outwards. While the rear delts are an important part of deltoids, they are often underdeveloped.

Benefits Of Rear Deltoid Exercises

Training for the rear delts should be a priority for the following reasons:

  1. Improve posture

Seating hours and muscle weakness can wreak havoc on your posture. But not to worry these rear deltoid exercises can help correct posture. If you tend to round your shoulders around and hunch over, strong rear delts can strengthen your upper back to correct this problem.

In addition, the involvement of the of core muscle engagement from these rear deltoid exercises will help you maintain a straight back and proper posture.

  1. Strong shoulders

These rear deltoid exercises are designed to tear up the muscle fibres in your shoulders and increase rear deltoid hypertrophy. As a result, you will build stronger shoulders, which will improve your performance in compound exercises such as the bench press and barbell deadlift. Your rear delts plays a role in a variety of types of exercises – you need to train properly.

Not only that, but back exercises also help to stabilize your shoulders. This extra stability can help prevent future shoulder injuries.

  1. Improved Aesthetics

When you exercise to improve your physical appearance, you should aim to put your shoulders first. Many bodybuilders and lifters tend to overtrain their chest and arms, leaving them with little shoulders unevenly or even when they do train their shoulders, they priotize their front shoulders more than their rear delts.

Building muscle symmetrically is important not only for the benefits of aesthetics, but it is generally safe to promote muscle balance in your body.

With that said, let’s check out some of the best rear deltoid exercises:


For those who exercise at home or outdoors without equipment, the shoulder muscles can be a group of muscles that are difficult to identify (such as the back). However, with proper exercise, you can successfully target your shoulders with your bodyweight only.

Tempo is also important. Some exercises will use slower, controlled tempo, while others will be more explosive. It is good to change the tempo, as you want to shock and squeeze your shoulders and traps. This will allow you to break plateaus, grow muscles, build strength, stamina, and endurance. The way you also angle your movements is the key to to honing in on specific muscles.

Finally, here are 9 best bodyweight rear deltoid exercises:

  1. Planks-up

rear deltoid exercises

No weights? No problem! Planks-up is a mix of core and shoulder training (most especially the rear delts).

How to do it:
  • Begin in a plank position with your arms down and your legs straight behind you.
  • Tighten your core and make sure your back is completely straight.
  • Pinch your shoulder blades as you go down until you almost touch the floor.
  • Squeeze your rear delts to explode back up to the original position.
  • Keep tightness in your delts and repeat!
  1. Air Divers

This is a standing bodyweight exercise targeting the rear delt. By heightening your mind-muscle connection to your rear delts and completing multiple reps, you can fatigue your rear delts and compensate for the lack of weighted resistance.

How to do it:
  • Start with your feet shoulder apart in a standing position.
  • With your core engaged and your back straight, bring your arms straight in front of you with your palms facing down.
  • Contract with your back to bend your arms and bring your elbows as far back as possible.
  • Squeeze your rear delts firmly into this position and return to the starting position.
  • Keep tightness in your core and repeat!

rear deltoid exercises

Although this is often considered a basic exercise, it also works for your deltoid (especially the front and sides of the delts), as well as your triceps and glutes, quads and lower back.

How to do it:
  1. Assume a standard plank position (on your hands, not your forearms). Make sure to tighten your core, glutes and quads.
  2. With control, while keeping your hips and shoulders squared in front of you, raise your hand to the opposite shoulder and tap it with the palm of your hand.
  3. Put your hand back down and repeat on the other side.
  • Keep your scapular retracted (shoulders blades pulled back together).
  • Make this exercise easy by doing it from your knees.

This is a mix of core and shoulders too. It will work on your abs, deltoids, triceps and your muscles.

How to do it:
  1. Get into a standard high plank position. Tighten your core, glutes and quads. Shoulders directly over your hands and feet.
  2. Push your hips up into the air as you move your right hand back to your left ankle.
  3. Return back to to the plank position, then repeat on the other side.
  • You can do this movement this slow or explosive. Try both, change the tempo.
  • Do not bend your back, try to make a V-shape upside down with your body.
  1. Explosive pike push-ups

Pike push up is one of the best exercises you can do.

How to do it:
  1. Get into the push up position in a shoulder width grip.
  2. Raise your hips up in the air so that your upper body is as upright as possible. Your body will make a v-shape upside down. At this point, your arms and legs should be as straight as possible.
  3. Bend your elbows and lower your upper body until your head is almost touching the ground, then press back up explosively until your arms are straight and your hands are off the floor.
  4. Catch yourself on the way down and keep strict control so you move slowly back down.
  5. Repeat.


  • Perform hamstring mobility exercises prior to this movement as hamstring flexibility will come into play on this one.
  • If you don’t have the mobility for this exercise, do elevated pike push ups.
  • If you are unable to perform regular push ups, do not attempt this exercise. Practice push ups first (yes, it is a chest exercise, but it will also improve your shoulder muscles).

Bear crawling is a brutally full-body exercise that emphasizes deltoids. Since they can be hard on the shoulder joint if done incorrectly, its best to do so in a controlled, developmental manner.

How to do it:
  1. Start at all four feet and raise your knees to the ground so that they are at a 90-degree angle about an inch from the ground.
  2. Move one hand and the opposite foot forward simultaneously at an equal distance while remaining low to the ground.
  3. Then move the opposite hand and foot in the same direction.
  4. Continue moving forward 5-10 steps, then backward with the same movement 5-10 steps. Continue this for desired number of reps.
  • Try to stay low to the ground.
  • Move slowly, controlling, in an orderly fashion
  • Be careful of your wrists and shoulders. If it hurts, stop.

rear deltoid exercises

Pike push ups will work your anterior and lateral deltoid. It is not far from an easy exercise. It is much harder than push it up.

How to do it:
  1. Get into the push up position. Hands shoulder width apart.
  2. Raise your hips up in the air so that your upper body is as upright as possible. Your body will make a v-shape upside down. At this point your arms and legs should be as straight as possible.
  3. Bend your elbows and lower your upper body until your head almost touches the floor, then press back up until your arms are straight. Repeat.
  • If you are unable to perform regular push ups, do not attempt this exercise. Practice push ups first (yes, it is a chest exercise, but it will also improve your shoulder muscles).
  1. Elevated PIKE PUSH UPS

This is the same exercise as the above. However, your feet will be raised to a certain type of platform, which makes it easier and require less muscle flexibility. In addition, it allows you to enter a vertical position (especially for those with flexibility problems).

How to do it:
  1. Place your feet on a platform about knee-height. It could be a chair, a bed, or anything sturdy.
  2. Keep your body as straight as possible.
  3. Bend your elbows and lower your upper body until your head almost touches the floor, then press backwards until your arms are straight. Repeat.
  • As you get stronger, you can lift your feet from the floor (to the level of the hip) This will greatly increase the intensity.
  • If your lower back feels uncomfortable, squeeze your glutes tightly. Try to keep your glutes tight.
  • Make it more difficult to raising your hands (small platform for your hands).

This is a more challenging exercise that will hammer your toes and traps. Do this exercise only if your shoulders and wrist are 100% healthy.

How to do it:
  1. Stand with your back to the wall, about a foot away.
  2. Place your hands on the floor, directly under your shoulder, and place your feet against the wall, your toes pressed against the wall.
  3. Slowly move your hands toward the wall and your feet up against the wall. Try to go as vertically as possible, at full handstand.
  4. Move your hands forward and feet down until you are almost parallel to the floor, then repeat by walking your hands back towards the wall and your feet back up until your body is vertical.
  • Move slowly.
  • Do not let your feet slip on the wall, keep full control.
  • Keep the spine neutral at all times. So, don’t look forward as you walk up the wall, look to the wall.
  • Breathing.

Not only is this a great exercise to practice handstands, but it is also a core stability and shoulder builder. It will also increase strength in the wrist as well.

How to do it:
  1. Stand facing the wall. The wall is there in case you kick too far. It will prevent you from moving forward and landing on your back.
  2. Place your hands shoulder width apart on the floor.
  3. Shoulders go forward, chest tucked, then kick up. One leg will follow the other.
  4. Aim to keep your body upright, hold, and bring one leg down as the other follows, to the starting position.
  5. Repeat.

You want to try to avoid the wall. Your goal is to enter a vertical position, pause, and then return to the floor.

  • Keep your arms straight.
  • Slightly move your shoulder back as your legs reach up to get a straight handstand position.

rear deltoid exercises

After practicing kicking the handstand for a few weeks, try doing a hand-stand hold for a long period of time. This exercise uses the same form, but instead of going back down after a pause, your goal is to hold the handback position for a longer period of time.