Rear Delt Fly: 2 Tips for a Better Rear Deltoid Workout

In order to help you make the most of your rear deltoid workouts, here are 2 tips used in the Performance U training approach to muscle building for maximizing posterior deltoid muscle recruitment when performing the machine rear delt fly exercise and the dumbbell rear delt fly exercise.

1. Rear Delt Fly Machine: Grab the Handles This Way

My man Brad Schoenfeld did a study, which investigated the Effect of hand position on EMG activity of the posterior shoulder musculature during a horizontal abduction exercise (i.e., a rear-felt fly machine), and found that “performing exercise on the reverse fly machine with a neutral hand position significantly increases activity of the posterior deltoid and infraspinatus muscles compared with a pronated hand position.”

2. Dumbbell Rear-Delt Flys: Grab the Dumbbell This Way

With the above study results in mind, it’s more likely that using a neutral grip when doing dumbbell rear-delt flies will also deliver increased activity of the posterior delts over using a thumbs down grip.

This also makes sense from an anatomy perspective because the neutral hand position is more externally rotated than the pronated position, as both the posterior deltoid and infraspinatus muscles are also shoulder external rotators.

That said, using the same type of rational as we did with the dumbbell biceps curl in this video; instead of gripping the dumbbell from the middle in the traditional manner…


…grip it all the way to pinky finger with your hand as far to this side as possible while you hold the dumbbells in a neutral grip (i.e., parallel to the floor).


This grip forces you to resist an increased amount of shoulder internal rotation (by using more of your posterior delts as external rotators) over the traditional middle grip, while you also use your posterior deltoids to horizontally abductor your shoulders to perform the dumbbell rear-delt fly.


BONUS TIP: Band Pull-Aparts

If you use the band pull aparts exercise using a superband, check out this cool tip, which was developed by my great friend Deanna Avery:

Exercise Programming for Physique Athletes Seminar in Kansas City, MO.

The day before I spend the weekend hanging out at The Fitness Summit, I’ll be teaching a Programming for Physique Athletes Seminar, on May 1st from 2pm-5pm in Kansas City, MO at Impact Elite GYM. You can register to attend here.

Strength Training for Fat Loss reached #7 on Amazon’s Best Sellers in Weight Training.

I’m extremely honored to announce that yesterday my book Strength Training for Fat Loss reached the #7 spot on Amazon’s Best Sellers in Weight Training list, and it has consistently hung around the Top 10 spot in recent days.

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I owe everyone of YOU who’s purchased a copy of Strength Training for Fat Loss for this honor. Your support and excitement about this book means everything to me! So, thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

Learn How To Program Like A Pro

Using My Must-Have Programming Charts

Learn how I how I quickly and easily create programs that get results and keep clients coming back for more by downloading my 2 must-have programming charts and watching the included video lesson.

With these two charts, you’ll be able to combine the most important functional movements with isolation exercises for the perfect balance of strength, hypertrophy and performance.

In this video lesson you’ll discover:

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If your goal is to write better programs for your clients and save time while doing so, then you’ll want to sign up for this free lesson!