Resistance bands are an excellent choice for anyone looking for a truly portable and inexpensive piece of exercise equipment. The best thing about using exercise bands as part of your workout routine is that you will never have any excuses for missing a workout. You can easily get a great workout in the convenience of your own living room, in a hotel room when traveling or even in your office at work. You can easily fit resistance bands into your suitcase, small bag, briefcase and even your coat pocket! This allows you to have instant access to an outstanding fitness tool you can access anytime.
Muscles Targeted: Rear deltoid flyes primarily target the posterior deltoids which is one of the three muscle heads that make up the shoulders. The rear deltoids are often the most neglected part of the shoulders since most people simply forget to train this area with the right types of exercises. Underdevelopment of the rear deltoids can lead to shoulder issues down the road and can cause problems with imbalances and possible rotator cuff issues.
Exercise Instructions (standing rear deltoid flyes): There are at least three ways of successfully doing this exercise. It is important to first be aware of the tension in the band and to choose a thickness that is right for your current fitness level. One way of approaching the rear deltoid flyes is by anchoring your band on a fixed object which could be a door handle, pole, or a tree. Next, face the band’s anchor and hold the two ends in your right and left hand respectively. Stand at least 5 feet away or more from the anchor depending on the amount of tension you want to get from the band. Starting from the center of your chest, extend your hands outwards until your arms are fully extended and your hands are about even with your torso (sides of your body). Then return the hands back to the starting position for the completion of the first repetition.
The second way of performing this exercise is by standing in an upright position and by approximating the center of the band with your hands each at about six inches apart from the band’s center. The starting position is with the hands in front of you with your arms fully extended out in front of your chest. Now, pull the elastic tubing until your arms are fully extended outwards (aligned with your torso) and then bring your hands back to the center position.
The third way you can perform this movement is by doing bent over flyes as shown in the video below. Stand with both feet securely on the band while holding both handles. Keep your legs apart with a slight bend in the knees. While maintaining a straight torso, lean down so you are almost parallel to the floor. Pull both ends simultaneously until your arms are fully outstretched. Slowly lower your arms back to the starting position to complete a full repetition.
Exercise Instructions (bent over rear deltoid flyes): Take an extra wide stance and place both feet on the exercise bands. Make sure to take up the extra slack on the bands and create tension before beginning the exercise. Maintain a slight bend in your knees and bend over at the waist. While holding both handles, slowly raise your hands to about eye level. You will feel the tension on the back of the shoulders (rear deltoids).
Things To Avoid: Your greatest enemy is bad posture and overall tempo. The consequences of this would be inability to work the targeted muscle group and unnecessary fatigue. You should also keep your arms straight and avoid bending them too much at the elbows to ensure that the shoulder muscles are doing the work. Your overall tempo should be very slow and controlled and avoid any fast, jerky movements. It’s also important to get the right type of band (thickness) to allow the best tension for your fitness level.
Reps and Sets: For a beginner, it is recommended to perform 8-10 reps for 2-3 sets which should give your deltoid muscles a good workout. As you get stronger, you can increase the number of reps to 15-20 (even higher) and increase the sets to 4-5.
Other Exercises To Use: If you want to switch it up, the rear deltoid flyes can be done using two light dumbbells. You can also use different weights like kettlebells or even soup cans for added resistance. The pulley machine can also be used if you have access to this type of equipment. Adjust two pulley cables and position them overhead. Hold both handles in front of your chest at the starting position. Pull them apart and extend your arms out so they are parallel with your torso (sides of your body). This is an excellent exercise for the rear deltoids if you want to add even more resistance than the bands can provide. However, since this exercise is considered a low weight, high repetition movement your main focus should be on using strict exercise form and the number of reps versus the overall weight being used.