Best Exercises for Posterior Deltoids
Posterior Deltoid is responsible for shoulder horizontal abduction, meaning moving the arm to the side and back.
Posterior Deltoid is engaged in all pulling movements, particularly rows. However, to isolate the muscle, a variation of reverse fly must be performed. It’s possible to do so with dumbbells, cables, or a dedicated machine. Cables are preferable to dumbbells because the resistance curve does not match the strength curve of the muscle when using dumbbells. Cables are also preferable to a machine because they allow the individual to move the arm in the direction that feels more natural.
- Adjust the cable arms to shoulder width and chest height
- Cross your arms and grip the pulleys or use a wrist attachment
- Engaging the core and keeping the torso stationary, pull the arms out and down to your side
- Return to starting position
Latissimus Dorsi is the primary mover when performing a row, however, Posterior Deltoid is a significant contributor, especially once the elbow moves behind the back. Rows can be performed with dumbbells, a barbell, cables, or a dedicated machine. Regardless of the equipment used, the exercise carries a risk of lower back injury. To reduce the risk, it’s best to perform rows with the chest supported. That can be achieved with an incline bench or a dedicated machine.
- Sit on the machine with your feet on the wedge
- Grip the handle with the arms extended
- Keeping the back straight, pull the handle toward the core
- Return the handle back until the arms are extended
When equipment is limited, Inverted Row is a good option for training the Posterior Deltoid. The exercise is harder the more parallel the body is to the ground.
- Start with a barbell or another grippable stable surface placed about arm’s length above the floor
- Lie down facing up on the floor with the chest beneath the barbell
- Grip the barbell with a pronanated grip
- Engage the scapula to retract the shoulders
- Keeping the feet on the floor and the body in a straight line, pull the chest to the bar
- Lower to starting position