Standing Dumbbell Fly: How to Do, Muscle Worked, Tips

Are you looking to add a challenging and effective exercise to your chest workout routine? Look no further than standing dumbbell flyes.

The standing dumbbell fly is a variation of the traditional dumbbell chest fly exercise that targets the chest and shoulder muscles in a unique way.

What is Standing Flys

Standing flys, also known as standing upward fly, are a strength training exercise that targets the chest and shoulder muscles.

During the standing dumbbell fly, the hand, and arm move through an arc while the elbow stays at a constant angle. Flying works the pectoralis major muscles.

The dumbbell fly, a bodybuilding favorite, is an isolation exercise and is usually performed after big compound lifts, like the bench and incline dumbbell press.

It is considered to be the perfect finishing move and a great way to focus on your chest after many pressing exercises.

Muscle Worked During Standing Dumbbell Fly

The standing low to high chest fly with dumbbells primarily muscle worked are Mid and upper pectoralis major muscles, In addition to its target the main pec muscle.

The standing upward chest fly has the involvement of several synergist muscles, these muscles include,

A handful of other muscles worked or play the role of stabilizer muscles, during standing chest fly, including your

Muscle Worked During Standing Dumbbell Fly

Benefits of Standing Dumbbell Chest Fly

Standing Dumbbell chest fly exercises provide some benefits.

Let’s take a look at the benefits of doing a Standing dumbbell fly.

  • Standing dumbbell Chest flys are a great alternative, for people who experience discomfort in their joints during the bench press.
  • The Standing upward chest fly can help open up your chest muscles. Chest openers may help reduce upper back pain, increase range of motion, and reduce tightness in the upper body.
  • This is perfect for people who want to work out at home without a bench.
  • Doing chest exercises with dumbbells makes your muscles work harder because they have to constantly keep the weight under control.
  • Dumbbells allow you to move them through a greater range of motion.
  • Dumbbells will immediately let you know if one side of your body is stronger or weaker than the other side.

How To Do Standing Low To High Dumbbell Chest Fly

Standing upward dumbbell chest fly is a good exercise to target your upper and inner chest. With only a pair of dumbbells, you can make your chest area broader and more developed.

This is a great exercise to activate the chest towards the beginning of a workout.

It may look like a front delt raise, but in this case, the arm position and angle you move your arms enable you to target the mid to upper chest.

  1. In a standing position, hold a dumbbell in each hand with your palms facing upward. 
  2. Make sure your feet are shoulder-width apart and your arms down straight in front of you.
  3. Raise the dumbbells up and together so that they come together at shoulder level or slightly higher.
  4. Slowly lower back to the starting position and repeat for the desired number of repetitions.
Standing Chest Fly

Tips and Forms For During Standing DB Fly

  • Perform this exercise slow and controlled, really focusing on the eccentric contraction.
  • Exhale during the concentric (muscle-shortening) part of the motion.
  • Start with a light set of weights if you’re a beginner, and slowly increase the amount of weight each week as you build strength.
  • Don’t let the dumbbells touch as they meet at the top, holding for a second in the contracted position.
  • Internally rotate your wrists in towards the top of the movement to allow for maximum contraction of the chest.
  • Pick a weight that you can control, that’s not too light or too heavy — find what’s right for you.
Read More To Know More: Chest Dumbbell Fly: Muscle Worked, Foam, Alternative

Standing Dumbbell Fly Variations

The low to high dumbbell fly can be done in different ways to suit your fitness level.

  • If you are new to performing standing dumbbell flies, you may want to apply a few modifications to make the exercise easier. One way to counter this problem is to use a lighter weight.
  • If you are looking for a more advanced variation to stimulate different muscle fibers in the chest, then try the one-arm standing dumbbell fly.

Standing Single Arm Dumbbell Chest Flyes

A one arm standing dumbbell fly is a unilateral variation of the traditional standing fly exercise that involves performing the movement with one arm at a time.

It helps to improve muscle imbalances between the left and right sides of the body.

It also improves range of motion and flexibility, providing a more isolated workout for the chest and shoulder muscles.

Standing Single Arm Dumbbell Chest Flyes

How To Do Standing Single Arm Dumbbell Chest Flys

  1. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and hold a dumbbell in one hand.
  2. Keep your back straight and your core engaged.
  3. Raise the dumbbell, so that it is at shoulder level or a little higher than shoulder level.
  4. Slowly lower back to the starting position
  5. Repeat for the desired number of reps before switching to the other arm.


  • Use weights that are challenging but allow you to keep good form.
  • Keep your elbow slightly bent.
  • Avoid momentum or swinging the weight.

What Are The Best Alternate Of Standing Chest Fly

Before we deep dive into the best standing upward chest alternatives. We must remember, a good standing dumbbell chest fly alternative will be able to satisfy the following criteria:

  1. Activate the chest muscle groups, which are trained in the low to high dumbbell chest fly.
  2. Isolate the muscle groups during execution.
  3. Train the chest muscle through a longer range of motion.

1. Incline Dumbbell Squeeze Press

The incline dumbbell squeeze press is one of the most effective chest pressing exercises which target the inner chest and upper chest.

During the squeeze press, the dumbbells are kept in contact with each other at all times, and you’re actively squeezing them inward (against each other) as hard as possible.

2. Incline Dumbbell Fly

The incline dumbbell fly is a great alternate to the standing dumbbell fly. This is one of the best upper chest exercises that you can do during your upper pecs workout.

Do not only perform a basic flat bench fly, but also add incline variation because the incline bench position allows for the isolation of the harder-to-develop upper pectorals.

Standing dumbbell fly vs lateral raise

  • The standing dumbbell chest fly primarily targets the chest and shoulder muscles, while the lateral raise primarily targets the shoulder muscles.
  • The standing dumbbell chest fly involves bringing the arms across the body while holding weights, while the lateral raise involves raising the arms out to the sides.
  • Standing dumbbell chest fly is a more compound exercise that involves multiple muscle groups, while lateral raise is more isolated to the lateral deltoid.

Frequently asked questions 

Is standing dumbbell fly good?

Yes, the standing dumbbell chest fly is a good exercise to target your mid and upper chest. With just a pair of dumbbells, you can strengthen your chest and make it broader and more developed.

This is ideal for people who want to work out at home without a bench.

Does standing dumbbell chest fly work?

Yes, A dumbbell fly works and helps to train the middle and upper parts of your chest muscles, this exercise also helps to strengthen the front, middle and posterior deltoids of your shoulders.

A handful of other muscles, worked or played the role of stabilizer muscles, during Standing chest fly.

What is a good standing dumbbell fly weight?

When doing dumbbell flies, it’s best to choose a weight that’s appropriate for your fitness level. If you are new to weight lifting, it is recommended that you start with a light weight of 3 to 5 pounds.

If you are experienced, you may want to use 8 to 10 pound weights.

Can standing flies be done without dumbbells?

Yes, standing flies can be done without a dumbbell by using resistance bands or water bottles instead.

Can standing flies be done with one arm at a time?

Yes, it is possible to do standing flies with one arm at a time to help improve muscle imbalances and increase range of motion in the chest and shoulder muscles. This variation is called the standing single arm dumbbell fly.


The Standing dumbbell chest fly may be a good exercise if you’re looking to build strength in your chest, shoulder, and arm muscles. Dumbbell flyes are, for the most part, underrated and often overlooked.

Best Chest Workout With Dumbbells at Home (Video)

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