How To Do Dumbbell Pullover

Dumbbell Pullover Exercise

Dumbbell pullover is a great exercise that can be used to either work your lats or your chest, all depending on how you perform the exercise and the mind-muscle connection that you use.

You can vary how this exercise works the body simply by focusing on squeezing different muscles as you go about the exercise.

As it is more of an isolation exercise, you’ll want to do it towards the end of your upper body training sessions, after finishing up with any lat pulldowns (or chest) exercises you are doing.

Also note that because this exercise can be very taxing on the shoulder joints, make sure that you are doing thorough rotator cuff warm-ups prior to starting the exercise.

Dumbbell Pullover How To

  • Lay down on a flat bench (or exercise ball), bringing a dumbbell up over your head holding it with both hands, palms supporting one side of the dumbbell. The feet should be placed directly on the floor for support.
  • Once comfortable, allow the weight to lower down behind the head.
  • As you do this, your upper back will rise up off the bench, arching as the ribs shift upwards. Allow this to happen but still focus on keeping the core tight so you don’t lose full control.
  • Once in position, squeeze the lats or the chest (depending on what muscle group you want to work) and bring the dumbbell back up over your head until it’s nearly perpendicular to the body (and you have resumed the starting position).
  • Pause here and then lower back down to complete the rep.
  • Continue on until all reps are completed.

Form and Technique

It’s important that you focus on keeping the shoulders down on the bench as you do this move and keep the dumbbell moving directly between the center line of the body, not off to one side.

Variations:   Weighted Pull Ups, Lat Pulldown

Routine for Strength:  3 sets x 12-15 reps

Routine for Muscle Gains:  4-5 sets x 6-8 reps

Dumbbell Pullover