How to Do the Plate Raise

The unassuming plate elevate requires minimal loading and no studying curve to be efficient. You seize a weight plate by both finish, brace your core, and lift it to your face degree for stronger and extra muscular shoulders. 

It could look easy — and it just about is — however there’s a lot value studying to make the plate elevate a worthwhile and efficient addition to your program.

A person doing the front plate raise.
Credit score: Srdjan Randjelovic / Shutterstock

From the setup and execution to variations and options, right here is every thing you have to know concerning the plate elevate.

Tips on how to Do the Plate Increase

The plate elevate leverages the tools already present in most gyms and the pure size of your arm to problem your muscular tissues. Right here is the short and soiled on set-up and execution.

Step 1 – Choose the Proper Weight

Hands holding a weight plate chosen from different plates.
Credit score: Day Of Victory Studio / Shutterstock

Discover a weight plate, weighing wherever from 5 to 45 kilos. (It’s okay, even inspired, to go gentle throughout your first set as a warm-up.) Given the character of the plate elevate, the problem will come from a mixture of weight and lengthy levers performing towards you — so go lighter earlier than ramping up as soon as your method is locked in.Coach’s Tip: Be affected person on the subject of progressing the burden you utilize for plate raises; there are solely so many weight increments obtainable. When doubtful, add extra reps first. When you’re capable of carry out 20 reps comfortably, improve the burden by a plate dimension, often in 5 pound increments. 

Step 2 – Grip the Plate

A person gripping a weight plate with both hands in front of her abdomen.
Credit score: Juan_Algar / Shutterstock

Seize the plate with each arms, palms going through one another. Some plates have handles, making this step simpler. Should you’re utilizing plates with out handles, squeeze the plate arduous and be thankful for the improvement in grip strength.

Coach’s Tip: Don’t be afraid to cinch up your grip. A tighter squeeze will assist with muscle irradiation (or rising muscle tensions all through your physique) and support with drive manufacturing and stability. 

Step 3 – Elevate the Weight

A muscular person doing the front plate raise.
Credit score: MDV Edwards / Shutterstock

Maintain a slight bend in your elbow to forestall pointless joint ache. Dig your toes into the ground, brace your core, and lift the plate out of your hip to your face degree. Pause for a beat on the apex of the motion after which decrease the plate again to your hip with management. 

Coach’s Tip: Attempt to calm down your neck and shoulders. You don’t wish to shrug your shoulders whereas elevating the plate, although the traps are barely concerned within the train. Your intention must be to maintain pressure in your deltoid muscular tissues.

Plate Increase Units and Reps

You should use the plate elevate to warm-up your shoulders earlier than bench pressing, to build muscle mass in your deltoids, or to build up extra shoulder muscle endurance. Listed below are completely different set and rep schemes for reaching any of these objectives.

For Warming Up: Carry out 1-2 units of 12-20 repetitions utilizing a lightweight to average weight. Relaxation 45-60 seconds between every set.

For Constructing Muscle: Carry out 2-3 units of 8-12 repetitions utilizing a average weight. Relaxation 2-3 minutes between every set.

For Muscle Endurance: Carry out 2-3 units of 15-20 repetitions with a lightweight to average weight. Relaxation for less than 30 seconds between every set.

Frequent Plate Increase Errors

The plate elevate is a reasonably easy train nevertheless it’s not with out some widespread errors. Watch out to not go too heavy, use momentum, or hyperextend your again in the course of the repetitions.

Going Too Heavy

One of the vital widespread plate elevate errors is lifting an excessive amount of weight. The plate elevate takes benefit of your arm size to extend the problem — as you elevate your arms, the burden strikes farther away out of your physique creating extra muscular pressure and stress on the muscle. This prolonged vary of movement means even a lighter plate could really feel heavier than you’d anticipate. 

Two people working with weight plates.
Credit score: antoniodiaz / Shutterstock

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If you end up unconsciously bending your arms earlier and earlier in your units, that is an indicator that you simply’ve gone too heavy. When doubtful, begin with a 10-pound plate and progress slowly from there. 

Utilizing Momentum

Should you’re utilizing physique English to get the burden plate from level A to B, then you definately’re robbing your deltoids of muscle-building pressure. The repair, nonetheless, is easy: Concentrate on the way you’re lifting the burden. Take a breath earlier than you carry the plate, and lift it at a constant tempo. Management the burden from begin to end. 

Hyperextending Your Again 

Hyperextending — or arching your again on this case — will provide you with a false sense of vary of movement. The place your arms must be elevating the plate, a hyperextended again received you there as a substitute. Keep a brace core to lock your torso in the suitable place and be diligent about elevating your arms, not extending your again.

Plate Increase Variations

There are a number of helpful plate elevate variations to weave into your repertoire. These could be complementary to the usual plate elevate or stand-alone workout routines. 

Plate Pinch Entrance Increase

Wrap your arms round both aspect of two 10-pound plates stacked on prime of each other. Functionally, this variation is identical as the usual plate elevate. You’ll carry the weights out of your hips to your face degree. Nevertheless, protecting the 2 plates pinched collectively provides an incredible problem to your arms and forearms.

In case your sport requires a powerful grip — like powerlifting, mountain climbing, or Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu — give this variation a shot. Notice that your arms and/or forearms could give out earlier than your shoulder muscular tissues. 

Double-Plate Increase

Seize a plate in every hand, holding them on the prime. (Both seize onto a deal with or squeeze the plate firmly together with your hand.)

[Read More: The Best Powerlifting Knee Sleeves You Can Buy]

The double-plate elevate provides a unilateral side to your plate elevate, difficult every of your arms to work independently of the opposite. These info make the double-plate elevate a fantastic software for muscle stability, elevated problem to stability, and scapular management.

Rotating Plate Increase

Equal elements plate elevate and cable chop, the rotating plate elevate has you carry a weight plate up and in a diagonal movement. Drawing the plate out of your hips towards your left or proper shoulder forces extra core recruitment to maintain your physique secure.

The rotating plate elevate is a core-strengthener and shoulder-builder in a single distinctive bundle.

Bus Drivers

These smurf. Increase a plate to in entrance of your face and maintain it regular. Now flip your arms to the left, such as you’re utilizing a steering wheel, after which flip them to the suitable. That’s one muscle-burning rep, and also you’ll wish to intention for 15-20.

Bus drivers are an isometric exercise that retains an immense quantity of pressure on the goal muscle. 

Plate Increase Alternate options

Once you’ve graduated from the plate elevate or just don’t have entry to plates, listed here are some nice options to fill in on their behalf. Every fulfills practically the identical demand in your muscular tissues with some subtly completely different advantages.

Cable Entrance Increase

The cable entrance elevate could be carried out wherever you will have entry to a pin-loaded cable machine. Decrease the pulley to the underside place and fasten a rope attachment or straight bar to the carabiner. Face away from the pulley, after which bend down to tug the attachment by way of your legs. Stand tall, holding the rope or bar with each arms. Increase the burden out of your hips to chest top.

In comparison with a weight plate, the cable stack supplies a extra constant resistance all through the motion’s vary of movement, creating extra pressure on the muscle and making it a tougher train total.

Dumbbell Entrance Increase

The dumbbell front raise is a traditional shoulder motion. It resembles the double-plate elevate however affords a a lot higher grip different. Since you need to be capable to shut your grip round a dumbbell extra securely than the plate elevate, you possibly can adequately load your muscular tissues with out grip being a limiting issue.

Carry out the dumbbell entrance elevate with each arms on the identical time or in alternating trend

Kettlebell Entrance Increase

Much like the dumbbell entrance elevate, the kettlebell entrance elevate is executed in the identical trend as the usual plate elevate however makes use of a unique implement.

[Read More: The Best Grip Strengtheners On the Market]

Kettlebells permit you to shut your grip across the deal with, bettering your potential to load the train. Nevertheless, the kettlebell could be manipulated otherwise than the dumbbell. You may implement a impartial grip instead, and for the reason that kettlebell is non-uniformly loaded (extra loading within the bell than the deal with), it is going to dramatically improve the steadiness problem.

Muscle tissues Labored by the Plate Increase

The plate elevate is an isolation motion, which means it entails only one joint (your shoulder) and primarily targets one (or only a couple) of muscular tissues. Maintain studying for extra info on how the plate elevate impacts your anatomy. 

Anterior Deltoids

The anterior deltoid is situated on the lateral third of your collarbone and attaches to the deltoid tuberosity of your higher arm (just about smack dab in the course of it). Primarily based upon your arm path, because of this the anterior deltoids will probably be doing nearly all of the “heavy lifting” on your plate elevate.


The traps are a bigger muscle group which have a variety of attachment factors throughout your again. A very powerful a part of your traps because it pertains to your plate elevate will really be the mid-to-low lure. Situated across the shoulder blade space — these elements of your traps anchor your shoulders in the suitable place. When you carry out the plate elevate, the anterior deltoid will probably be working arduous to boost the burden whereas the mid-to-low traps will probably be locking you in the suitable place.

Advantages of the Plate Increase

The plate elevate will assist pack on muscle, however can be helpful for total upper body warm-ups and serving to to develop your decrease traps.

Extra Shoulder Muscle

The anterior deltoids (entrance shoulder) are the key gamers in performing a plate elevate. For the reason that plate elevate requires lighter weights in comparison with shoulder press variations, they’re accessible for many each lifter. With the low barrier to entry on load and execution, plate raises is usually a key think about constructing big delts.

They’re A Good Heat-Up Possibility

Given the numerous variety of muscular tissues that help throughout a plate elevate, you should utilize it as a extremely efficient warm-up software. Merely seize a low-to-moderate weight and carry out a couple of fast units of 12-20 repetitions. You’ll must lock in your full physique to brace your place. Take a couple of minutes off to get well and your total higher physique must be good to go for the remainder of your exercise.

They Construct Your Decrease Traps

Maybe one of the unsung advantages of the plate elevate is the problem it throws at your shoulder blades. The mid-to-low traps are answerable for controlling your scapula (shoulder blades) throughout most workout routines. From urgent to pulldowns, the traps play a job in sustaining the right place and total stability.

The back of a person carrying a weight plate in each hand.
Credit score: BLACKDAY / Shutterstock

[Read More: Lift Heavier and Protect Your Neck With the Best Trap Exercises]

With the plate elevate in your program, you possibly can preserve an undoubtedly helpful dose of low-to-mid lure stimulation within the combine always.

Who Ought to Do the Plate Increase

The plate elevate is a comparatively low-impact addition to nearly any program that delivers a strong bang on your buck. Given all of its advantages, novices, energy athletes, Olympic lifters, and bodybuilders will all profit from the plate elevate.


Are you comparatively new to lifting weights? Seize a lightweight plate and begin performing plate raises — it is going to assist to construct plenty of muscle and coordination that carries ahead to quite a few different workout routines later in your growth. From scapular management to bracing mechanics and muscle acquire, this one is an actual winner for novices.

Energy Athletes

Energy athletes can profit from the plate elevate as a low-load different warm-up software. Main barbell exercises require shoulder stability and bracing to execute. Nevertheless, when you’re a energy athlete, you’re sometimes beat up on a regular basis from the necessary heavy weight of your programming. Using the plate elevate to warm-up the shoulders and mid again, and cue bracing is an effective way to restrict how a lot load is important to arrange with, leaving the heavier weights on your primary coaching session.

Olympic Lifters

Lure stability and bracing is one other hallmark trait of the Olympic lifter. Should you’re routinely placing heavy weights over your head and demanding your shoulders and traps to maintain every thing locked up tight, a plate elevate suits the invoice. 

[Read More: Forge an Iron Grip With the Best Forearm Exercises]

Whereas the loading is negligible in comparison with a snatch or power clean, that’s the particular profit. Like energy athletes, a properly executed plate elevate for average to excessive repetitions can assist grease the groove and get your higher again prepared for motion, minus the heavy weight.


Bodybuilders love burn out. Whereas the plethora of advantages a plate elevate affords applies to your bodybuilding wants as properly, maybe essentially the most readily house profit is its low-load finisher potential. 

A bodybuilder holding a weight plate to do the front plate raise.
Credit score: Aquarius Studio / Shutterstock

The plate elevate could be the “flye” of the shoulders and traps. The lengthy lever execution makes it a light-weight method to method fatigue with larger repetitions on the finish of the set. Toss it initially or finish of your exercise as a warm-up or finisher and also you’ll reap all the advantages. 

Clear Your Plate

The plate elevate is a straightforward train that doesn’t require a ton of fancy tools or load to be efficient. It takes the generally discovered weight plate and turns it right into a implausible coaching software with an enormous quantity of advantages. 

With practically zero barrier to entry, your plate elevate is usually a brutally efficient warm-up motion, muscle-builder, and even used to construct some endurance. Placing a ton of emphasis on scapular management and strict execution can have big carry over advantages to energy, energy, and any variety of different train types as properly. Begin tinkering with the plate elevate and also you may discover that it sticks round as your new favourite so-simple-its-silly coaching software.


I really feel a pinch within the entrance of my shoulder when executing a plate elevate, what ought to I do?

Typically the plate elevate doesn’t match your physique dimension — notably when you’ve got a wider set of shoulders. If that is so, utilizing an Olympic lifting plate (for instance, a 10-pound plate with the diameter of a 45-pound plate) is usually a nice answer. Oftentimes assuming a wider grip will alleviate any awkward friction in the course of the vary of movement. A second possibility can be any of the unilaterally loaded variations (such because the double-plate elevate, dumbbell, and even kettlebell variations).

How heavy ought to I carry with my plate elevate?

The plate elevate makes use of physics to make the train tougher. An extended arm (or lever) makes lighter weights really feel heavier as a result of the burden will probably be farther from the working muscle on the prime of the motion. With this in thoughts, you received’t must go very heavy to perform the outcomes you’re in search of. More often than not, 10 to 25 kilos ought to get the job carried out. Strive including extra reps to the motion first after which slowly improve the load.

Are plate raises protected?

There may be actually inherent threat with any train, nonetheless if you’re diligent in your execution the plate elevate is not any extra harmful than some other train. Be aware of your set-up, brace, and managed motion and try to be wonderful. If in case you have any doubts or questions, please seek the advice of together with your physician earlier than attempting any new train.

Featured Picture: Srdjan Randjelovic / Shutterstock

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