Lying Band Face Pulls - variation
How to Do Lying Band Face Pulls - Rear Delt Shoulder Exercise at Home | In-Depth Guide [VISUAL LEARNERS]
Proper Form, Common Mistakes & Variations | Home Resistance Training
VIDEO TUTORIALS HEREWRITTEN TUTORIAL + IMAGES BELOW
Tap To Go Where You Want:
MAIN MUSCLES WORKED IN the Lying Band Face Pull
REAR DELTOID, INFRASPINATUS, & TERES MINOR
OTHER MUSCLES WORKED:
- Middle and Lower Trapezius
- Latissimus Dorsi
HOW Lying Band Face PullS SHAPE OUR BODY
Good posture; balanced capped shoulders.
WHAT WE'RE DOING TODAY
Other names for this exercise: Supine Resistance Band Face Pull, Lying Down Band Face Pull,
ALL WE'RE DOING:
Pulling a band towards our faces. Thus the name face pull. Get it?
Face pulls are an excellent exercise for our back muscles and shoulders (especially our rear delts), but they are usually done in a gym. This easy shoulder face pulls variation is a great cable alternative, done with a resistance band instead, and can be done laying down and face up. This positioning lets you really focus on the movement of the shoulder without worrying about keeping the torso still or pulling the shoulder blade down and in, which makes it a good choice for beginners as well. This position is a good option for targeting the rear deltoids and the two rotator cuff muscles (infraspinatus and teres minor) that externally rotate the upper arm.
The lying down position decreases the effects of gravity, allowing the muscles of the upper back and arm to relax. In fact, the pull of gravity will help to get the shoulders in the right position - pulled back and the chest really opened. This position will passively (so you don’t have to work to do it) reverse the curved upper back and rounded shoulder position. You also do not have to work to hold the body and arm up. Many people tend to have overactive traps that want to help with arm movements. Lying on your back will let the upper trap and lateral deltoid relax because gravity is not pulling the arm down.
PROPER FORM: Lying Band Face Pulls
EQUIPMENT, SETS & REPS
Main set (3: Light/Med/Heavy):
X-Heavy Band (I recommend getting this too if you plan to use resistance bands frequently).
SUGGESTED STARTING WEIGHT FOR WOMEN:
Light to moderate resistance
SETS & REPS:
2 sets of 8 reps
Moderate pull back and slow return to the starting position
BODY POSITION FOR THE Lying Band Face Pull
BAND: Anchored about waist height - exact position depends on the resistance level of the band. Adjust the length of the band/anchor position/position on the floor to allow pulling your upper arm all the way to the floor, and then rotating your upper arm so that your thumbs touch or come close to touching the floor.
BODY STANCE: Lying on your back, feet towards the anchor. Knees bent with both feet flat on the floor. Neutral spine. Back of shoulders relaxed or pressed (if your muscles are tight) back (not rounded forward) on the floor. Relax on the floor to open your chest.
HAND/GRIP: Hold one end of the band in each of your hands. With a neutral grip on the band, palms facing inward and thumbs pointed backward.
ARMS: Arms lifted up so the upper arms are in line (70 -90 degrees of flexion) or just slowly lower than your shoulders. Elbows bent so hands are slightly wider than elbow width apart or hands right in line with elbows (70 -90 degrees of elbow flexion). The band should be just taut.
HOW TO DO
HOW TO DO Supine Band Face Pull
CUE: Concentrate on the muscle on the back of your shoulder as you move your arm back and rotate it.
Pull your upper arms back keeping them at shoulder height or slightly lower the entire time.
When your upper arms rest on the floor, rotate your upper arms back, aiming your thumbs for the floor.
Return to the starting position by reversing your movements with slow control.
HOW TO SAFELY GET OUT OF THE EXERCISE
From the starting position, release the band.
WHAT TO AVOID WITH THE Floor Lying Band Face Pull
Guess what? Good news! Many avoids are the same for most movements. Once you learn the basics, there's really only a few extra avoids for each individual movement.
1. Avoid Arching Lumbar Spine
AVOID: Arching your low back when you pull the band back.
- This can strain the low back.
- Will decrease the work done by the muscles of the upper back.
WHAT TO DO:
- Make sure that the knees are not locked.
- Activate the abdominal muscles to hold the spine in neutral.
2. Avoid bending elbows too much
AVOID: Bending the elbow more than 90 degrees.
- This will decrease the lever arm - move the resistance closer to the shoulder joint, so the muscles will not need to work as hard.
WHAT TO DO:
- Keep the hands in line with the elbows or wider.
3. Avoid elbows too close to torso
AVOID: Letting the elbows drop as you pull the arms back.
- Letting the arms drop will decrease the activation of the scapular retractors and the latissimus dorsi will be more active.
WHAT TO DO:
- Keep the elbows in line with the shoulder joint or a little lower.
- The hands should be around nose level as they get by your ears.
VARIATIONS OF Lying Band Face PullS
External Rotation Only
Shoulder External Rotation Only Band Face Pull
Pull the arms back and rest the upper arm on the floor. Hold the arms in this position and perform external rotation of the upper arm. Move the hand back, leading with the thumb, as close to the floor as you are able - keeping good form (spine and shoulders). Hold this position for 3 seconds, and slowly bring the hands back up. Repeat - just the external rotation part of the movement. This is a good way to really feel how the upper arm bone rotates in the shoulder socket.
I personally feel my rear delts working more effectively with this palm position.
Lying On Foam Roller
Lying On Foam Roller = More ROM
This variation allows you to get more range of motion because your arms can now get behind your torso a bit, better for the rear delts to work harder.
WHAT & WHY
BENEFITS OF TRAINING THE Rear deltoid
WORK SOME OF OUR MOST IMPORTANT MUSCLES- POSTURAL MUSCLES
Face pulls are exactly what they sound like- pulling something towards our face.
This exercise works the muscles of the back of the shoulder (the rear delt) and the upper back. The arms are held high and pulled back against the resistance of an elastic band. The movement of the arm comes from a combination of moving the shoulder blades and pulling the arms back. The shoulder blades move around the ribcage, in towards the spine - squeezing in to work the muscles of the upper back.
The back portion of the deltoid muscle, which lies on the back of the shoulder, works to pull the upper arm back. Towards the end of the movement, the upper arm rotates backward, you will feel a nice contraction in the back of the shoulder. These are the two main functions of the rear portion of the deltoid muscle - pulling the arm back and rotating it - so that the soft, underside of the arm turns to face up.
These are nice exercises to reverse the negative effects of too much sitting and working with our arms in front of us. Face pulls are really good for strengthening the muscles of the upper back and shoulder but they are also really good for stretching out the chest muscles. If you have a desk job, try taking a band to work, find a high place that you can anchor it, and do a few face pulls throughout the day.
WHY DO WE EVEN CARE?
INCREASE OUR PULLING STRENGTH & GET BEAUTIFUL SHOULDERS
- Training rear delts does give a nice rounded appearance to our shoulders.
- Strengthening the back of our shoulder can help to increase our pulling strength, especially when our arms are further away from our bodies - like reaching out to the side of you like a corner kitchen cabinet to pull a heavier item off a shelf or to hold a heavy item with our arms away from our sides (I often have to do this in order to get said large item to clear the floor) - the ideal way to help move a heavy desk would be to keep my arms close to my body where more of my upper body muscles can help out, but being the short little person I am, I often have to bend my arms & hold them up high to hold my end of the desk off the ground.
REVERSE COMMON TIGHTNESS ON THE FRONT OF OUR UPPER BODY
The muscles of the upper back and the back of the shoulder are frequently overlooked during workouts. Some people joke that that is because you can’t see them in the mirror. Unfortunately, you can see the results when these muscles are neglected. Stooped posture is a common sign of aging, beginning as early as 40 years of age, and increasing dramatically after 60. The changes are most notable in the thoracic spine - the upper back. The thoracic spine becomes more rounded, which leads to the shoulder blades moving forward (protraction) which causes the shoulders to be rounded and the arms to turn inward.
Exercising the muscles on the front of the upper body (biceps, pectoralis, anterior deltoid), or tightness of those muscles due to long periods of sitting, driving, computer work, cooking (most of our daily activities) can encourage the upper back and arms to round forward. These changes interfere with the healthy movement of the shoulder joint and can lead to loss of motion, weakness, and pain. There is a lot that you can do to prevent these changes. Exercising the muscles of the back will help balance this out to improve the health of the shoulder joint and your posture.
IMPROVE THORACIC SPINE MOBILITY
There’s also this thing with our upper back - our thoracic spine - a tendency towards a forward curve & stiffness in this area of our back. Face pulls can help reverse this issue - working on being able to get movement through our upper back to get back some of that flexibility as well by actively pulling back against resistance & strengthening the muscle's ability to do that.
Face pulls can help prevent the changes in posture by working the upper back out of the forward curve (thoracic extension), strengthening the muscles that pull the shoulder blades back (retraction), and rotating the upper arm back. This movement trains and strengthens the muscles of the upper back, rotator cuff, and rear deltoid to improve upright posture and shoulder movement. This exercise focuses on pulling the arms back, and then externally rotating the arms - this helps to work the upper back towards extension (to counter daily activities that encourage rounding the spine forward. The movement will also stretch the muscles that pull the arms forward.
EVERYDAY LIFE &
HOW WE USE OUR Rear Deltoid IN EVERYDAY LIFE
1. STABILIZES THE SHOULDER (REAR DELTOID, INFRASPINATUS, AND TERES MINOR)
- Keeps the head of the humerus centered in the socket (glenoid fossa)
- Pushing up from the floor
- Carrying, especially heavy loads
- Helps to prevent damage to the shoulder joint- wear and tear over time due to poor movement patterns
2. MOVES THE ARM BACK (REAR DELTOID ONLY)
- Reaching behind the back
- Pulling items towards you
- Reaching into the back seat
3. HELPS TO MAINTAIN UPRIGHT POSTURE (REAR DELTOID)
4. EXTERNAL ROTATION OF THE UPPER ARM (REAR DELTOID, INFRASPINATUS, AND TERES MINOR)
- Putting your hand in the back pocket (palm down)
- Turning outstretched arm with palm up for receiving change
- Catching a ball
- Reaching the back of your head
- washing/brushing/drying hair
How to Feel What Muscle is Working
Stand with your back against the wall, arms at 70 - 80 degrees of shoulder abduction, and 90 degrees of elbow flexion. Place the back of the upper arms and forearms on the wall. Push back with the upper arm and the hands into the wall. You should be able to feel the muscles between the shoulder blades, and the back of the shoulders work.
SPIFFILICIOUS FACTS ABOUT MUSCLES & MOVES
The movement of your arm would be very limited If you were to move just the arm or just the shoulder blade. The socket that the arm bone moves in is like a small cup on the shoulder blade. When you let your shoulders slouch, the cup is angled forward. You can feel this if you slouch, your upper arm will round forward. In order to get the arm behind the back, you have to angle the cup so that the arm can get to the back. From a slouched position, lift your arm to the side and try moving it behind your back. Now pull your shoulder blade back. Moving the shoulder blade back angles the cup to the side of the body. You should be able to move the arm further back. If the arm moves back without angling the cup out to the side, not only will it restrict your movement, it can irritate the soft tissues and the joint, causing damage over time.
The rear deltoids function is horizontal abduction/extension (lifting the arm up and moving it backward), and external rotation (rotating the upper arm up) of the shoulder joint. The rear deltoid works with the other parts of the deltoid muscle to stabilize the shoulder joint by positioning the head of the humerus (upper arm bone) in the center of the socket. The rear deltoid helps hold the shoulders back to limit rounded shoulder posture. The mid trapezius and rhomboids work together to pull the shoulder blades back from a protracted position. Retraction of the shoulder blade changes the position of the “socket” portion (the glenoid fossa) of the shoulder blade.
ALLLL MUSCLES & WHEN
ALL MUSCLES WORKING & WHEN DURING THE Supine Band Face Pull
The muscles of the legs and core will be active to hold the body still as the band is pulled back.
The beginning of the movement is initiated by scapular retraction (mid trap and rhomboids) and depression (lower traps) as the shoulder blades are pulled inwards (towards the spine), and the rear deltoids move the arms horizontally into extension. The middle deltoid assists to hold the arm up in abduction. Once the arm is in line with the body the rear deltoid, infraspinatus, and teres minor (2 rotator cuff muscles) externally rotate the upper arm.