How to do the Cuban Press shoulder exercise. This page includes step by step instructions, plus exercise tips and muscles worked. I talk about the benefits of performing this exercise and I recommend other shoulder strengthening exercises.
The Cuban Press shoulder exercise incorporates many different movements giving the benefits of various different shoulder and trap exercises.
The Cuban Shoulder press is basically two exercises in one. It includes movements similar to the upright row which targets those traps and then you rotate your arms to turn the movement into a standard shoulder press which targets those deltoids.
Cuban Press Benefits
Potential benefits are improved shoulder stability which can help to prevent injuries, this exercise can also strengthen the rotator cuff, this includes the smaller internal muscles of the shoulder.
Cuban Press Muscles Worked & Exercise Info
- Primary muscles worked – Shoulders & Traps
- Secondary muscles worked – Triceps
- Exercise type – Compound
- Equipment needed – Barbell or Dumbbells
Cuban Press Technique – using barbell
- Stand up straight with your feet about shoulder width apart holding the barbell, grip the barbell just wider than shoulder width holding the barbell just below your waist, this is the start position.
- Now slowly and in a controlled fashion raise your arms until your upper arms are parallel with the floor, elbows bent at about 90 degrees.
- Rotate your arms until you find yourself in a common shoulder press position and then press and straighten your arms.
- Reverse the movement to return the barbell to the start position.
If you want to use dumbbells the technique is identical. The Technique for both is displayed in the video above.
Cuban Press Exercise Tips
- Never jerk the movement, this is true of most exercises but it’s especially true for the Cuban press due to the rotation of the shoulder joint.
- This can be perform just as well with a pair of dumbbells, however using dumbbells will require a little more control during the movement. It’s best to use a barbell to begin with until you master the technique.
- Don’t perform this exercise if you have any shoulder injuries or imbalances.
- When first trying this exercise just use a barbell without any added weight.
Other Recommend Shoulder Exercises