How To Build Your Serratus Anterior Muscle

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The serratus anterior is a group of muscles, made up of upper and lower digitations, that originates on the upper eight or nine ribs and inserts on the anterior part of the medial border of the scapula. The muscle group has several functions, including the abduction of the scapula and elevation of the scapula. The serratus anterior is worked during many bodybuilding exercises such as pullovers and push-ups. To better target the muscle group, you can perform more specific bodybuilding exercises such as straight-arm exercises on an incline bench.

Choose two of the following exercises and perform them at the end of your chest workouts. Alternate the exercises you do from workout-to-workout. Perform three sets of 15 reps per exercise.

Incline Barbell Straight-Arm Raise

The incline barbell straight-arm raise is an exercise that targets the serratus anterior muscles. To perform the exercise, first set the bench to a forty-five-degree angle. Grab the barbell with your hands using an overhand grip that is slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Keep your arms straight throughout the exercise. Move the barbell slightly upward by raising your shoulders. Move the barbell down to the beginning position by lowering your shoulders.

Incline Dumbbell Straight-Arm Raise

Incline dumbbell straight-arm raises are a movement for the serratus anterior. To execute the movement, begin by adjusting the bench to a forty-five-degree angle. Hold a dumbbell in each hand with an overhand grip. Keep your arms straight during the movement. Bring the dumbbells a bit upward by raising your shoulders. Bring the dumbbells back down to the start by lowering your shoulders.

Flat Dumbbell Pullover

The flat dumbbell pullover is an exercise that targets the serratus anterior, pectoralis major and latissimus dorsi, along with several other muscles. To perform the exercise, first set the bench to the flat position. Grab the dumbbell with both hands under one end of the dumbbell and lay your back on the bench. Position the dumbbell over your chest with your arms almost fully straight, keeping a slight bend in your elbows. Move the dumbbell behind your head until your upper arms are about parallel to the floor. Move the dumbbell up to the beginning position.


Push-ups are a movement for the serratus anterior, pectoralis major, anterior deltoids and triceps brachii. To execute the movement, begin by placing your hands on the ground at a distance that is a bit wider than shoulder-width apart and with your arms straight. Place your feet on the ground with your legs extended. Keep your hips off the ground throughout the movement. Bring your torso down towards the ground by bending your elbows. Bring your torso back up to the start by extending your elbows.

Wall Push-Up

Wall push-ups work the same muscles as push-ups, but the movement has a totally different feel because of the different angle. Start by placing your hands on a wall. Put your hands a little more than shoulder-width apart in distance and start with your arms straight. Move your feet back until your body is forming about a 45-degree angle with the ground. This is the starting position. Bend your arms to move your torso towards the wall. Once your elbows are forming a 90-degree angle stop the downward motion and then straighten your arms to return to the starting point.