Reverse Dumbbell Flyes

By Dr. Donald A. Ozello DC

Las Vegas Informer

Perform reverse dumbbell flyes to strengthen the posterior shoulder, rotator cuff and upper back to improve posture and shoulder function. Reverse dumbbell flyes develop several key muscles in the posterior shoulder.

Reverse flyes primarily target the posterior section of the deltoid muscle. Reverse dumbbell flyes also train the supraspinatus, infraspinatus and teres minor. These three muscles compose the posterior aspect of the rotator cuff. Reverse dumbbell flyes also build the muscles in the upper back that retract the shoulder blades.

Anatomy: The posterior aspect of the deltoid muscle originates on the scapula and merges with the fibers of the anterior and lateral sections of the deltoid to attach to the upper arm bone. When contracted the posterior deltoid pulls the upper arm backward toward the spine.

The supraspinatus, infraspinatus and teres minor muscles originate on the posterior side of the shoulder blade and attach to the upper arm. As a unit they contract to raise the upper arm and pull the upper arm backward toward the shoulder blade.

The muscles that originate on the spine and attach to the shoulder blades are the rhomboid major, rhomboid minor and the middle and inferior aspects of the trapezius. These important muscles retract the shoulder blades toward the spine. Collectively they are known as the scapular retractors.

Posture and Function: The correct balance of strength between the muscles that pull the shoulder backward and the muscles that pull the shoulder forward are necessary for proper posture and correct functional movement. Proper strength balance is imperative for healthy shoulder performance.

Technique: Correct technique is vital and more important than the amount of weight. Start light and perfect your technique before adding weight.

Reverse dumbbell flyes can be performed seated, standing or prone on an incline bench. If seated or standing bend forward at the waist to ninety degrees. Grasp a dumbbell in each hand with your wrists straight and elbows bent. Begin with the weights close to the floor and almost touching each other.

Exhale and raise your shoulders and arms backward toward your spine at ninety degree angles. Keep your elbows bent and lift your shoulders as high as you can. Inhale and lower the dumbbell in a controlled manner.

Reverse dumbbell flyes are best performed after the basic multi-joint exercises. Begin with one set of ten to thirty repetitions. If needed, add a second and third set in gradual increments. Progress in weight slowly and feel the correct muscles working throughout the exercise.

Utilize reverse dumbbell flyes to strengthen your posterior shoulders. Strength and endurance in the posterior shoulder improves upper body posture and shoulder function.

Dr_Donald_A_Ozello_thumb_medium150_Dr. Donald A. Ozello DC

Dr. Donald A. Ozello DC is the owner and treating doctor at Championship Chiropractic. 2595 S. Cimarron Rd, Suite #100, Las Vegas, NV 89117.  His web address is Championship Chiropractic. He can be contacted at (702) 286-9040 and

Dr. Donald A. Ozello’s mission is to educate and inspire others to live healthier, fitter, more functional lives.

Dr. Donald A. Ozello DC proudly handles Standard Process Supplements and Foot Levelers Orthotics.

Dr. Donald A. Ozello DC writes a weekly health, fitness, exercise and nutrition column for The Las Vegas Informer. His is published in OnFitness and

Dr. Donald A. Ozello DC is an award-winning public speaker. He has spoken to numerous groups on the importance of health, fitness, exercise, ergonomics, nutrition and injury prevention.

Dr. Donald A. Ozello DC is a fitness enthusiast. Functional kettlebell training, bike riding and running are his favorite forms of exercise.

Before pursuing his career in Chiropractic, Dr. Donald A. Ozello DC served in the United States Navy aboard the USS Bremerton, SSN 698.


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