Reverse Grip Cable Fly

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Reverse Grip Cable Fly

Reverse Grip Cable Fly: A Comprehensive Guide

The Reverse Grip Cable Fly is a popular exercise targeting the chest, shoulders, and arms. By understanding the mechanics, variations, and benefits of the cable reverse fly, you can incorporate this effective move into your fitness routine.

Understanding the Cable Reverse Fly

The cable reverse fly is an isolation exercise that primarily works the chest muscles. It involves a specific movement of the arms across the chest, facilitated by cable machines. The uniqueness of this exercise lies in its ability to isolate and target the chest muscles while engaging the shoulder joint and arms.

Setting Up for Success: Start Position and Stance

To begin the reverse cable fly, approach the cable machines and adjust the pulleys to chest height. Stand in a staggered stance for stability, with one foot slightly in front of the other. This position helps maintain balance and allows a full range of motion throughout the exercise.

Start Position:

  • Stand between the cable machines
  • Grab the handles with an underhand grip (palms facing up)
  • Slightly bend your elbows and keep your wrists firm

Executing the Reverse Grip Cable Fly

With the start position set, extend your arms out to the sides in a wide arc. As you perform the movement, keep your elbows slightly bent to protect the shoulder joint and maintain tension on the chest muscles. Pull the handles towards one another in a smooth, controlled motion while slightly bending forward from the waist.

Key Movement Tips:

  • Keep the elbows slightly bent throughout the exercise
  • Focus on moving through a full range of motion
  • Avoid jerky movements or swinging the weights

The Importance of Returning to the Starting Position

After bringing the handles together in front of you, slowly release them back to the start position. This phase is crucial for maintaining continuous tension on the muscles and ensures a full range of motion. Make sure to control the weight as you return to the starting position, resisting the pull of the cables.

Mastering the Technique: Slightly Bent and Controlled

To maximize the effectiveness of the reverse cable fly, keep a few technique points in mind:

  • Slightly Bent Elbows: Maintain a slight bend in the elbows throughout the exercise to avoid strain on the joints and focus the work on the chest muscles.
  • Controlled Motion: Move the weights in a controlled manner, both while squeezing your chest and returning to the start position. This ensures that your muscles are engaged throughout the entire range of motion.

The Role of Staggered Stance

A staggered stance not only aids in balance but also allows for a greater range of motion. By positioning one foot slightly forward, you can lean into the exercise, ensuring a full stretch and contraction of the chest muscles.

Enhancing the Exercise: Squeeze Your Chest

One of the most critical aspects of the reverse grip cable fly is the emphasis on squeezing your chest at the peak of the movement. As you bring the handles together, focus on contracting your chest muscles tightly before slowly releasing back to the starting position. This squeeze is key to maximizing muscle engagement and growth.

Safety and Adjustments: Protecting the Shoulder Joint

The shoulder joint is heavily involved in the reverse cable fly. To protect it:

  • Avoid locking your elbows or overextending at the end of the movement
  • Ensure that the weight is manageable and doesn't pull your arms back too forcefully
  • Make adjustments to the cable height and weight as needed to maintain proper form

Variations of the Reverse Grip Cable Fly

There are several variations of the cable fly that can help to target different parts of the chest and add variety to your workout:

  • Incline Reverse Cable Fly: Adjust the cables to a lower position and lean forward, performing the fly movement at an upward angle.
  • Seated Reverse Cable Fly: Sit on a bench between the cable machines and perform the exercise with the same arm movement, focusing on isolating the chest muscles.

Integrating Reverse Grip Cable Fly into Your Routine

The reverse grip cable fly can be incorporated into your chest day or upper body routine. Consider the following tips when adding it to your workout:

  • Perform the exercise after heavier compound movements like bench presses
  • Aim for 3-4 sets of 10-15 repetitions, focusing on form and contraction
  • Combine with other chest exercises for a comprehensive workout

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Can beginners perform the reverse grip cable fly? A: Yes, beginners can perform this exercise, but it's important to start with light weights and focus on proper form.

Q: How often should I perform the reverse grip cable fly? A: Include this exercise 1-2 times a week in your routine, allowing ample rest for muscle recovery.

Q: What are the common mistakes to avoid? A: Common mistakes include using too much weight, not maintaining a slight bend in the elbows, and failing to control the movement throughout the range of motion.


The reverse grip cable fly is a versatile and effective exercise for targeting the chest muscles while engaging the shoulders and arms. By mastering the start position, movement, and technique, you can safely incorporate this exercise into your routine for improved strength and muscle definition. Remember to focus on form, control, and the all-important squeeze at the peak of the movement to maximize your results.

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