Bench Exercises: Flat Bench Dumbbell Flys

Dumbbell flys are one of the most common kinds of exercises that trainers do on a flat exercise bench. Done right, repetitions of this exercise can add a lot of strength to the arms and even train the pectoral muscles. When done without proper guard for safety, dumbbell flies can leave the arms vulnerable to injury.

What Is a Flat Bench Dumbbell Fly?

In general, trainers use the word “fly” to refer to an exercise where the arms come together from a lateral position. For example, a fixed weight fly generally includes a machine with an upright seat and two lateral pads that the user brings together with the arms, combating resistance provided by weight plates on cables. A flat bench dumbbell fly is an activity that uses two equally matched free weights, called dumbbells, that the user holds, one in each hand.

To do a flat bench dumbbell fly, lay down on your back on the exercise bench with a dumbbell in each hand. Make sure your head and back are well supported. Slowly extend your arms until the dumbbells are lateral to your chest on either side. For one repetition, slowly bring your arms up and over your chest until the dumbbells are close together, directly over your body. Then, return to the original position, with your arms somewhat extended laterally. This is one repetition.

Lots of trainers do several sets of repetitions in order to train their arms with this activity.

Safety with a Flat Bench Dumbbell Fly

In order to be safe with this exercise, start off with a very low weight. Make sure it is a weight that your arms can handle, and add additional weight slowly, allowing your arms to build up to handle higher weight loads. In addition, you don’t want to overextend your arms to the point where you strain your muscles or even hurt your upper back. Keep your arms only moderately extended in the initial position, so that you are sure your wrists and forearms can handle the weight load.

Muscles Worked with a Flat Bench Dumbbell Fly

A flat bench dumbbell fly works various arm muscle groups, as well as the pectoral muscles. These kinds of activities can really contribute to upper body strength, and provide a good basis for further free weight or fixed weight training. Talk to your resident trainer at your gym or health club about adding these kinds of free weight activities into your existing fitness schedule.

You’ll find that a variety of fixed weight or free weight exercises train your core muscles and help you work up to greater body responses that will help you in sports, recreational activities, or even just regular things that you do during the course of the day, from lifting heavy items to doing yard work. That’s one of the main benefits of overall muscle tone: along with slimming down and increasing your heart health, you’re also making yourself stronger and giving yourself a better chance of avoiding a range of injuries later in life.


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