Arnold’s Chest Stiff-Arm Pullovers Exercise


Among his overwhelming size and definition of muscles, Arnold Schwarzenegger was well known of his big chest; where many other athletes had well defined chest muscles but not as big as Arnold’s. With commitment and hard training, Arnold Schwarzenegger reached the goal where he combined size, definition and uniqueness for his chest muscles. Today we are going to discuss one of the most famous chest exercises,  the chest stiff-arm pullovers.

Target Muscles:


  1. Pectoralis major
  2. Triceps (long head)
  3. Serratus anterior
  4. Posterior deltoid
  5. Teres major


ABCDEF Safety:

Alignment: Start by placing your dumbbell next to you on a flat bench. Then lay horizontal across the bench forming a small “t” against it. Keep feet about shoulder width apart or slightly wider and make sure only your upper back is touching the bench. Roll over and grab the dumbbell choking up on it almost as if you were throwing a two handed pass. Release the weight down behind your head as low as possible before bringing it back up to your chest.

Breathing: Breath in while releasing the weight back behind your head, breath out while moving the weight forward.

Concentration: Be sure to pause and squeeze at the top of the motion to really bring mind muscle connection to your chest. Keep wrist straight and adjust the positioning to concentrate or go easy on certain muscle groups.


Duration: start with 6 to 8 repetition for 3 sets, increase number of sets or reps according to your muscle strength and fitness condition.

Errors: Using too heavy dumbbells, which can cause tearing in the rotator cuff.

Fluids: make sure to be hydrates before, during and after exercising.


It is common for weight lifters to train the front of the body more than the back of the body. As it is easier to check your form in the mirror when training the chest and some feel that it is more satisfying to see results on the front of the body–which you see more often—than it is to imagine results on the back of the body.

If you find this information correct or false, email us with TRUTH or FICTION on ( and receive 10% discount on the upcoming CFT (certified fitness trainer) course from FACTS.

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