Running Arms

There’s probably a real name for this exercise somewhere, but I always call it running arms. I call it this because the arms simulate the running motion when doing the exercise.


I like this exercise because it is very functional. It uses the shoulder muscle in the way that they are intended to be used most, in a back and forth motion like in walking or running. What better way to strengthen a muscle than with it’s intended purpose?


Body Parts Used

The running arms exercise uses the front delts and rear delts as the primary movers. The front delts are used when the arm is swinging forward and the rear delts when they are swinging back.

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  • Holding hand weights, stand with knees slightly bent for cushion of the spine.
  • Hold dumbbells down at your sides with palms facing in. Your elbows should be locked at a 90 degree position.
  • Swing the weights back and forth at a comfortable pace. Don’t go too fast.
  • Stop when you have reached a mild fatigue.
  • Discontinue if there is any discomfort in your shoulder joint.

Similar Exercises

Note: One exercise alone is not sufficient for any goal. All exercises should be part of a comprehensive exercise program. Also, see my list of exercises for more.

Mike Caton