The landmine press is a unique unilateral overhead pressing movement that can increase movement asymmetries, build scapular strength and stability, and improve overall health and development of the shoulder. In this landmine press guide we will discuss:

  • Landmine Press Form and Technique
  • Benefits of the Landmine Press
  • Muscles Worked by the Landmine Press
  • Landmine Press Sets, Reps, and Weight Recommendations
  • Landmine Press Variations and Alternatives
  • and more…

What is a Landmine Press?

The landmine press is a pressing variation that is done by using a barbell and placing it diagonally into a landmine holder (or simply setting it into a stable base, such as in the corner). In doing so, you can increase scapular stability, unilateral control, and can start to address shoulder/scapular instability issues for lifters who may not be ready to place loads overhead.

Landmine Press – Muscles Worked

Below are the muscle groups worked during the landmine press.

Scapular Stabilizers

The landmine press is dependent on the stabilization of the scapular region due to the angle and the unilateral nature of the press. Athletes who lack stabilization in the scapular region or have limitations overhead can use this exercise to increase basic overhead strength, muscle mass, and develop greater neurological control while pressing.


Like most pressing movements, the triceps are involved during the final stages of elbow extension (towards the top of the press). While the triceps are not the primary muscle groups, they are responsible for assisting the shoulders in the lock out stages of the press.


The landmine press increases shoulder (deltoids) strength and muscular development, and can be placed within workout programs to diversify one’s movement patterning and muscle control.


The landmine press and it’s variations challenge the obliques due to the unilateral nature of this pressing movement. During the landmine press, the athlete must stabilize the core and resist not only spinal extension, but also to withstand and stabilize any rotational forces that occur during the pressing movement.

Benefits of the Landmine Press

Below are three (3) main benefits of the landmine press coaches and athletes should be aware of when programming landmine presses into strength, power, and fitness programs.

Core Stability

Aside from the benefits of overhead pressing, the landmine press can increase core stability and anti-rotational strength. This is key for all overhead athletes looking to increase truck stabilization when moving loads overhead and to minimize spinal stress (such as shearing forces on the spine when the lumbar spine is exposed to excessive rotational/extension forces).

Scapular Control

Increasing scapular stability and control is key for athletes placing loads overhead. The landmine press reinforces proper scapular stabilization due to the pressing angle and loading of the barbell as it comes into and leaves the body (due to the unique pressing angle).

Increase Functional Pressing Strength

When we look at overall pressing strength, the landmine press can be used to increase scapular stability and shoulder strength, both necessary for hoisting large objects overhead. In performing this moment, coaches and athletes can address movement asymmetries, imbalances, and instability in the shoulder/scapular region.

Who Should Do Landmine Press?

The below section breaks down the benefits of the landmine press based on an lifter’s/athlete’s sport goals and abilities.

Landmine Presses for Strength and Power Athletes

The landmine press can be used as an accessory movement to increase overhead performance, strength, and to address any shoulder movement imbalance/instability. Lifters who may have limitations of pain in traditional overhead presses may find this angle to be less painful. Lifters who are experiencing pain while pressing should consult a trained physical therapists of professional.

Landmine Presses for Functional Fitness / CrossFit Athletes

While this movement will rarely (if ever) find its way into formal competition, it can be a good variation to increase unilateral strength, scapular control, and address any movement asymmetries and muscle imbalances for most overhead athletes.

Landmine Presses for General Fitness

The landmine press is a good movement to increase shoulder stabilization, strength, core stability, and reinforce proper overhead pressing mechanics with beginner lifters and/or those individuals who may have limitations when pressing a weight overhead.