How to Train Deltoids with Bowflex Exercises for Shoulders

Alright, to show you the Bowflex exercises that you can do for shoulder workout this time I'd like to take the Bowflex Xtreme 2 SE as example.

It is one of the best Bowflex out there, even though I prefer models like the Blaze (or equivalent) because you can adjust the inclination of the bench, and you can even remove it and use the sliding seat for exercises like leg press and rowing.

Bowflex Exercises Shoulder Press

Shoulder press, one of the many Bowflex exercises for shoulders

With a "static" bench like the Bowflex Xtreme 2 SE has...hmmm...I see it hard!

I think the adjustable bench and the low pulleys are the two real differences between all the Bowflex models.

Speaking of shoulder exercises you can pretty much do the same with any model.

Look at How Many Bowflex Exercises for Shoulders You Could Do!

Let's see what the owner's manual suggests for shoulders:

  • Reverse Flys
  • Crossover Reverse Flys
  • Crossover Rear Deltoids Rows
  • Crossover High Rear Deltoids Rows
  • Lateral Shoulder Raises
  • Forearm Lateral Shoulder Raises
  • Front Shoulder Raises
  • Seated Shoulder Press
  • Shoulder Rotator Cuff (internal)
  • Shoulder Rotator Cuff (external)
  • Shoulder Extension
  • Shoulder Shrug
  • Scapular Protraction
  • Scapular Depression
  • Crossover Seated Rear Delt Rows
  • Scapular Retraction

So...what to say...16 shoulder exercises, some of which I bet you've never heard before (like me)!

Just imagine that with my previoud home gym (a Marcy home gym) I couldn't do any exercises for shoulders!

Here I'll describe the most popular Bowflex exercises for shoulders, I let you read the manual for the others...

Anterior Deltoid

Front Shoulder Raises

Muscles worked: Front Deltoids and front part of Middle Deltoids.

Here you can see the utility of the low pulleys (squat pulley frame).

Remove the seat and rest your lower back on the back seat pad to do standing front raises.

Bowflex Xtreme 2 Exercises - Front Raises

Seated Shoulder Press

Bowflex Xtreme 2 Exercises - Shoulder Press

Muscles worked: Front Deltoids and front part of Middle Deltoids, Upper Trapezius, and Triceps.

Shoulder press is my favorite exercise.

You can do this from the sitting position and using the pulleys on the center cross bar.

Lateral Deltoid

Lateral Shoulder Raises

Muscles worked: Lateral Deltoids, Upper Trapezius.

Facing forward, remove the seat and execute lateral raises with handgrips attached to the squat pulleys.

This is the classic exercise for lateral deltoids, usually done with dumbbells.

Bowflex Xtreme 2 Exercises - Standing Lateral Raises

Seated Forearm Lateral Raises

Bowflex Xtreme 2 Exercises - Seated Forearm Lateral Raises

Muscles worked: Lateral Deltoids, Upper Trapezius.

This exercise is what we usually do at the deltoid machine. Keep your elbows bent 90 degrees (handgrips over elbows) and raise them laterally like in the picture.

Stop at shoulder height.

Rear Deltoid

Reverse Flys

Muscles worked: Rear Deltoids.

I associate this to the pec deck machine exercise.

Actually I prefer doing it bending forward a little bit to fully work the rear deltoid. If you do it like in the picture you also work your lateral deltoids and don't totally focus on the rear.

Bowflex Xtreme 2 Exercises - Reverse Fly

Crossover reverse fly is another form of the exercise described above.

The difference is in the range of motion that is wider in this case.

As a variation, you can do this attaching the handgrips to the high pulleys.

Bowflex Xtreme 2 Exercises - Crossover Reverse Fly

Crossover Seated Rear Deltoid Rows

Bowflex Xtreme 2 Exercises - Crossover Rear Deltoid Rows

Muscles worked: Rear Deltoids, Upper Trapezius.

Here remember to maintain a 90 degree angle between your upper arms and torso. Slightly bend your knees but don't bend your torso forward

Shoulder Rotator Cuff (internal & external)

Muscles worked: Front Rotator Cuff muscle (subscapularis).

Make sure you do a slow and controlled motion.

Don't rotate your spine and use low resistance. You're training a very small muscle.

Bowflex Xtreme 2 Exercises - Shoulder Rotator Cuff (internal)

Muscles worked: Rear portion of Rotator Cuff (infraspinatus, teres minor muscles).

Same as above, only that it works the rear portion of the rotator cuff instead of the front.

Bowflex Xtreme 2 Exercises - Shoulder Rotator Cuff (external)


I didn't describe ell the Bowflex exercises for shoulders, just the basic and most common.

But even ignoring a few exercises, I think this is already a great and wide choice to fully work your deltoids.

This is what you can do with a Bowflex Xtreme 2 SE, but as long as you have high, middle and low pulleys you can do the same with every other Bowflex or home gym in general.


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