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incline dumbbell flyes

Lying on a bench, feet firmly on the ground, arms semi-tensed with a dumbbell in each hand, it is from a positioning arm apart (elbows bent) to bring the dumbbells over you (in the axis of the pectorals).

We often hear several versions as to the proper way to execute the spreads.

The rule, to solicit maximum pecs is to lower your elbows in the extension of your shoulders.

In addition, it is important to understand that what matters in amplitude is the level of the elbows. In simple terms, this means that you can bend your arms (up to a certain limit, that it does not look like a developed one) because what matters is the position of the elbows for the stretching of the pecs in a low position.

Be careful not to have your arms too tight, which increases the risk of injury to the biceps.

Finally, it is worth noting that, as with all pectoral exercises, your rib cage should be “out.” You must not at any time find, yourself flat.

Execution of the exercise

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So I advise you of these products that you will need in this sport:

1. Starting position

  • Set the incline of the bench between 30 to 45 degrees. An inclination too close to the vertical or an angle too large will solicit more shoulders.
  • Sit on the incline bench, dumbbells in your hands, and then place your back against the backrest and bend your knees to about 90 degrees.
  • Lay the feet flat with a width equal to the width of the shoulders (increase it if instability).
  • Extend your arms over you, keeping your elbows slightly bent.
  • The palms of the hands should face each other and the arms should be perpendicular to the ground.

This is your starting position at the reclining inclined incline.

2. Execution of the movement


  • Lower your arms laterally, describing a quarter of an arc, until you feel a stretch in the chest, about the time the arms reach the shoulders.
  • At the end of the descent, the palms should be facing the ceiling.


  • Bring the dumbbells up, playing the same quarter circle as the descent, so that the palms of the hands are facing each other again.
  • Hold the position for one second.

Repeat the movement until the end of your series.

coaching tips

  • The recumbent lying with dumbbells is never done very heavy to avoid the risk of tearing at the pecs. It is a basic movement to increase chest expansion that helps to increase lung capacity. It is. on the other hand, an excellent exercise to relax your pectoral muscles.
  • For effective muscle development, this unique exercise depends more on leverage than the load. Even if you use dumbbells much lighter for the spreads than for the developed, the exercise is not easier for as much; keeping the arms almost stretched, the lever arm is less advantageous than with the developed arm flexed.
  • Keep your elbows slightly bent; no more than 90°in the low position, otherwise the inclined inclines with dumbbells turn into inclined development with dumbbells.
  • Do not exceed the normal range of motion at the shoulder joint. If the arms go down below the shoulders, you could put too much strain on those joints and muscles, which could tear muscle fibers or worse, a tendon.
  • Keep your feet on the ground for stability during exercise. In fact, it is necessary to exert pressure on the ground with the feet.
  • Make sure that the arms extend in the extension of the shoulders, in a vertical plane. If the arms move lower than the middle of the chest or go over your head, the movement generates excessive tension on the shoulders.

Targeted muscles

In this exercise, it is the pectorals, and only these muscles will be worked. By practicing some variations, you can target the top or the bottom of this area, and possibly solicit a little your muscles located on the front part of your shoulders.

However, spreading with dumbbells is really an exercise designed to target the muscle-building of your pecs.

How to avoid injuries?

To avoid injury it is important to follow some tips.

First, be careful not to gain too much weight because you risk a tear in the chest.

In addition, as you move downhill, your arms should not descend lower than your shoulders. Below, your joints will be heavily stressed and you risk tear muscle fibers or tendons.

The same thing when you go back, your arms should always stay in line with your shoulders, so as not to generate excessive tension on your shoulders.

If you choose to do the spread with dumbbells it is important to make small series, and to take a few steps between each of them. Indeed, this variant requires you to keep your head down, which causes blood to flow to the brain and can cause dizziness and discomfort. It is, therefore, important to maintain good blood circulation throughout the exercise.

Whatever the version of the spread with dumbbells practiced, it is important to always perform the movements slowly, keeping control, especially when it comes down. Indeed, if when you get your arms down at your shoulders you do some jerking (so poor control of the descent), you may hurt yourself.

(I see you as a person with an interest in bodybuilding! )
So I advise you of these products that you will need in this sport:


If the classic version of the dumbbell flys inclines, it is also possible to perform a slanted inclined with dumbbells. This variant will make it possible to further stress the upper and middle parts of the pectorals.

To achieve this variant, begin by tilting your bench between 30°and 45° Lie on it, always keeping your knees bent at a right angle and your feet flat on the floor. Grab a dumbbell in each hand and place your arms vertically above your chest while keeping your elbows slightly bent.

Start your series by lowering your arms outward while inhaling deeply. Your elbows should stay slightly bent during this movement. Go down until your arms are level with your shoulders.

Reassemble slowly, exhaling until the arms return to the upper position, following your shoulders. Another variant is to make the spread declined with dumbbells. In this version, you will request more of the bottom of your chest, as well as your shoulders.

As for the inclined spread, begin by tilting your bench between 30°and 45° but this time, under the horizontal. Lie down to keep your head up, while keeping your bust in contact with the bench. Your knees must be bent and your feet must be locked under the sleeves to be stable. It is best if your feet are spread the same width as your shoulders.

Grab a dumbbell in each hand and place your arms outstretched above your chest. Descend slowly up to your shoulders while inhaling. Then go back to the starting position while exhaling.


  • Inhale down the arms.
  • Inhale as you wind, them up.

To better control your movement: inhale in the starting position and exhale at the end of the climb.

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