Cable shoulder workouts are great because they produce more hypertrophy which will build up your shoulders, arms, and upper chest. They’re also very efficient because of the one-on-one attention you’re sure to get with pushdown cables. Not only will you get a ton of targeted stimulus through the lat and 3-4-5 delt exercises, but you’ll also get to work your traps, rhomboids, and brachialis muscles as well. These exercises are going to not only build your shoulders but also your entire upper body. Even if you’re already very muscular, they will give you a pumped-up look that’ll make people stop and ask “Who’s that?”
The cable shoulder workouts I’ve created below are the exact types of programs I use myself and have used for my clients. However, keep in mind that everyone is different and what works for me may not necessarily work for you, so don’t be afraid to improvise when building a program for yourself.
#1 Cable Reverse Flye
No matter what your fitness goals are, you may be missing one key factor: The Cable Reverse Flye! This exercise is perfect for targeting your traps, and the mounting arm will help you to target certain areas of your back. In addition, it’s a great exercise for glutes, deltoids, and rhomboids.
The Cable Reverse Flye uses two cable attachments to allow you to work on different parts of your body during every set. It’s an incredibly effective way to improve muscle endurance and strength in seconds!
Cable Reverse Flye is a great exercise to develop an improved mind-body connection. In doing this, you can feel each muscle involved in a given lift better and isolate one muscle group from working too much while other groups are being neglected.
#2 Bent-Over Dumbbell Lateral Raise
It is a great exercise to work the front side of your shoulders while strengthening your rotator cuffs. This move can also be used as an anti-rotation exercise before a bench press or military press.
Hook the dumbbells underarm so you can use them outside of each arm for leverage during the movement. An overhand grip is recommended though some people use a neutral grip.
STEP 1: Sit down with your upper body in a bent position, hold the dumbbells in front of you at chest level (e.g. over your lower chest). Keep your torso upright and move laterally away from the dumbbells (left or right) using only your arms and core muscles: Keep the torso upright throughout the entire movement.
STEP 2: Keep your torso upright as you bend to 90 degrees, keeping your arms extended throughout the exercise. Continue to turn until the arm is straight and then return to the start position.
STEP 3: Repeat Steps 1-2. Continue to turn until the arm is straight and then return to the start position.
#3 One-Arm Cable Lateral Raise
While this exercise may sound easy enough, its benefits are huge! A little arm strength goes a long way in combat sports training or any other physical activity that requires upper body strength, such as hiking or climbing stairs.
This relatively simple exercise is where it all begins. By starting with a one-arm variation you can get a feel for the movement and slowly work on your balance. This is important because when you begin to use heavier weights, balance is essential to prevent injury from falling off balance from a potentially dangerous weight. The optional use of momentum or use of both arms will not yield results.
How to Do: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, your knees slightly bent. Hold a weight in one hand and raise it to the side until the arm is parallel to the ground.
Methodically take three seconds to lower the weight back down. Pause for three seconds at the bottom of each movement, and continue this for a total of two sets of ten repetitions on each arm.
#4 Cable Front Raises
The cable front raise is a weightlifting exercise that targets the anterior deltoid muscles. The movement can be performed with both arms simultaneously or individually, depending on what you’re targeting. It comes under the list of one of the best cable shoulder workouts.
How to do Cable Front Raises?
Position yourself on the cable pulley machine, using a shoulder-width grip with arms extended. With elbows pointing straight out, lower the handles down so they are closer to your chest.
Raise them directly toward your shoulders as you bring them back to the starting position. Repeat for a specified number of repetitions. To perform this exercise with one arm, do the same thing but use the elbow pad instead of a grip handle and move only that arm. You can perform one-arm Cable Front Raises on both sides if you want to target both sides of your shoulders.
#5 Push Press
Muscle-building exercises, such as bench presses, often work all the muscles of your upper body. Push presses work all the muscles in your arms and shoulders. The push press is a free-weight, explosive exercise for the shoulders and arm muscles. It is one of the best cable shoulder workouts.
How To DO: The push press starts with a lifter standing in a front squat position. The lifter then brings their elbows up, locks out their arms overhead, and immediately follows through by pressing the barbell straight down to the ground. Although the most common form of this exercise uses an Olympic barbell, it can also be performed with dumbbells or kettlebells.
Push presses are performed similarly to military presses but with an explosive movement off of your toes at the start.
#6 Dumbbell Lateral Raise
To perform the Dumbbell Lateral Raise, stand with your feet hip-width apart and hold a dumbbell in each hand, directly above your shoulders. Keeping your wrists straight, bend to one side as you raise both arms out to the sides until they are parallel with one another and are about shoulder-width apart from one another. Slowly return to the starting position before repeating on the opposite side. Keep alternating back and forth between sides at a slow pace until you’ve completed all of the reps for that set of five or desired amount of repetitions.
How To Do Dumbbell Lateral Raise?
In this exercise, you should use a dumbbell for each hand for performing. You need to stand with your feet hip-width apart. Now hold the dumbbell with both of your hands and keep your shoulders straight. You can make use of a mirror so that you will be able to see the right form of this exercise. Bend a little down & now raise your hands above the shoulder level and keep them a little distance apart from each other as well as try to make a 90-degree angle with your arm. Slowly move downwards after raising them above the shoulder level and repeat it forgiven limit or desired number of times.
#7 Seated Barbell Shoulder Press
The seated barbell shoulder press is an exercise that targets the shoulders and traps. It can be performed sitting on a bench or chair.
The movement begins by holding a barbell with both hands in front of the chest so it’s resting across your lap. The lift starts from a sitting position and when lifting weights, you should never fully straighten up to avoid injuring your spine when lowering weights back to seat level. You can use dumbbells or kettlebells instead if you don’t have access to a barbell to work out your muscles and joints evenly and keep them healthy for daily activities.
How To Do Seated Barbell Shoulder Press?
To perform the seated barbell shoulder press, you will start by sitting on a bench or chair with the barbell resting across your lap. You can rest your feet on another bench or have them parallel on the floor depending on your level of comfort. With a straight back, begin to bend forward at the waist to pick up the barbell off your lap. Make sure that you keep your torso vertical and only lean forward a little, being careful not to round your back as you do so. Next, grip the weight firmly in both hands with elbows pointing straight out and pointing toward each other.
These were some of the best cable shoulder workouts from my side. I hope you loved it and found this post useful.
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