The Lateral Raise: How To Do It And Five Top Form Tips

The lateral raise is one of the best shoulder exercises for those looking to build muscle in their shoulders. It’s also a very simple movement: essentially you just raise weights to the sides and up to shoulder level, then lower them again—though naturally we have some far more detailed advice about perfect form to follow.

However, don’t let that simplicity fool you into thinking you’re in for an easy time. The lateral raise is devilishly hard, even with very light weights. What seems incredibly simple on rep one is absolute murder by rep eight, so pick your weight wisely. If you’re doing this exercise for the first time, choose the weight you think will allow you to complete all the reps with good form—then go lighter. One set shouldn’t take much more than a minute—so why risk an injury for the sake of 12 reps with weights that are too light?