Best 8 Cable Chest Exercises for a Solid Chest Workout

Cable Chest Exercises: Did you know that using a single machine you can do a full chest workout that targets all the muscles that make up your chest muscle group?

This article is dedicated to informing you about the 8 best Cable Chest Exercises you can do on the cable machine. You’ll also find a sample wired chest workout to try on your next chest day. If you want to replace dumbbells and bars with new cable moves, read on!

8 Best Cable Chest Exercises


Below you will find an introduction to some useful chest exercises that can be done on the cable machine! Various moves are included that hit your chest muscles from various angles, such as when performing a workout using machines, dumbbells, and barbells.

Pay close attention to the notes provided on the form, as the form is key to achieving the best results and keeping you safe.

1. Cable Crossover

Chest muscles worked: pectoralis major (lower)

How:

  • Attach a single handle to each cable tower at the highest setting/over your head.
  • Stand in the middle of the towers with a handle in each hand and get into a split stance. Put your weight on your front foot, creating a slight forward bend along your torso.
  • Start with your arms wide apart, just enough behind you to feel a stretch in your chest muscles.
  • With a small bend in your elbows, pull the cables down in front of you, crossing one arm over the other to full extension.
  • Slowly return to the starting position.
  • Do your crosses with alternating arms on each rep. i.e. right arm up left arm down/left arm up, right arm under
  • Keep your torso mostly still and let your chest pull the weight forward instead of the momentum created.

Read More>> Kegel Exercise For Men: The Kegel Exercise For Men Guide

Read More>> 9 Best Cable Shoulder Exercises for Boulder Shoulders

2. Low Cable Fly

Chest muscles worked: pectoralis minor (upper)

How:

  • Attach a single handle to the bottom of each cable tower.
  • Stand in the middle of the towers, holding a handle in each hand, and get into a split stance. Lean on your front foot, bend your knee. Your back leg should be straight.
  • To begin, with your arms pointing down, you’ll pull the cables up and together so they meet in the middle of your chest. Keep a small bend in your elbows and an engaged core/still torso as you do this.
  • When your hands meet at the top of the movement, your palms should be facing each other. For extra effect, bend the bases of your palms together to form a “V” shape with your hands/grip.
  • Remain in this position for a while before returning to the starting position.

3. Cable Fly

Chest muscles worked: pectoralis major (intermediate)
How:

  • Attach a single handle above shoulder height to each cable tower.
  • Stand in the middle of the towers with a handle in each hand and get into a split stance. Bend your front knee and transfer your weight to your front foot.
  • Start with your arms wide apart, creating a slight stretch in your chest and shoulders.
  • Keeping a small bend in your elbows and keeping your chest upright, pull the cables together in a sweeping motion so that your hands meet in front of your body and your palms face each other.
  • Hold this position for a second and feel the pressure on your chest, then return to the starting position with full control of the weight.

4. Exercise Ball Cable Fly

Chest muscles worked: pectoralis major (bottom to the middle)

How:

  • Attach a single handle to the bottom of each cable tower.
  • Keep an appropriately-sized exercise/Swiss ball in the middle of the cable towers.
  • With a handle in both hands, sit on the ball and then walk your feet out until your body is in a semi-horizontal position with your upper back and shoulders on the ball. Keep your hips upright and make a hard 90-degree bend in your knees with your feet flat on the ground.
  • Start with your arms wide and your hands just below your shoulders. Keeping a slight bend in the elbows, pull the cables up and together so they meet above your chest. With your chest muscles fully contracted, hold this position for a second and then return to the starting position.
  • Pro tip: Do this exercise unilaterally for an extra challenge in stabilizing!

5. Unilateral Cable Press

Chest muscles worked: pectoralis major (middle to bottom)

How:

  • Attach a single handle to one of the shoulder-height cable towers.
  • Holding the cable in one hand, step out of the cable machine and into a split stance with your weight on your front foot. You should keep your opposite leg forward towards the arm you are using.
  • Start with the cable in your hand, palm facing down, and a 90-degree bend at the elbow. Consider the beginning of the chest press position, but one-sided.
  • While keeping your torso stationary, press the cable forward until your arm reaches full extension and then return to the starting position – making sure you don’t let your arm go too far back in the eccentric phase. Always maintain tension in the cable.
  • Repeat all reps on one side before switching sides, and don’t forget to switch front legs when switching arms.

6. Cable Flat Bench Press

Chest muscles worked: pectoralis major and minor (lower, middle)

How:

  • Attach a single handle to the bottom of each of the cable towers.
  • Grab a handle in each hand and lie down on a flat bench in the middle of the cable towers. Your feet should be flat on the floor, your arms should be in line with your chest, and your elbows should be bent 90 degrees.
  • From here, push the cables up and into the arms extended together, fully contracting your chest.
  • Return to the starting position and take your time in the eccentric phase, allowing a minimum of time on the bottom before moving on to your next rep.

Pro Tip: Use cable wrist straps attached to each wrist with a dumbbell in each hand for this exercise – double pain, double gain!

7. Cable Incline Bench Press

Chest muscles worked: pectoralis major and minor (middle, upper)

How:

  • Attach a single handle to the bottom of each of the cable towers.
  • With a handle in each hand, set yourself up on a sloping (45-degree) bench in the middle of the cable towers.
  • To begin, keep your elbows bent at 90 degrees with your feet on the floor and your hands in line with your chest.
  • From here, feel your upper chest working and push the cables up and into extended arms together.
  • Slowly return to the starting position without letting your arms go too far back and create an extreme stretch in your deltoids.

8. Cable Iron Cross

Muscles working: pectoralis major and minor (internal)

How:

  • Attach a single handle to each of the cable towers at the highest setting/above head height.
  • Stand in the middle of the cable towers with one cable in each hand. Your feet should be together, your chest and head should be upright.
  • Start with a slight bend in your elbows and open your arms at your sides. Keeping the bend in your elbows, pull the cables down so that they meet closely in front of your body with your palms facing each other. At this point, you should feel your inner chest muscles doing the work.
    Let your arms return to the starting position and make sure you’re straight and upright before moving on to your next rep.

Pro Tip: Do this exercise one arm at a time to concentrate on balanced left/right strength.

Example Cable Chest Exercise


I’ve put together a collection of the exercises introduced above to create a ‘Cable Chest Day Workout’ that you can try! If you haven’t done some of these before, watch the video links provided in the exercise descriptions for some further guidance.

The following exercise is a general chest exercise designed with shaping, toning, and muscular endurance in mind.

Instructions: There are 3 supersets in this workout of 2 exercises each. Each superset must be done on its own for 3 rounds with 1-minute rest between each round before moving on to the next superset.

SUPERSET 1

  • Cable Iron Cross x 12
  • Cable Crossover x 12

SUPERSET 2

  • Unilateral Cable Press x 12
  • Exercise Ball Cable Fly x 12

SUPERSET 3

  • Cable Incline Bench Press x 12
  • Low Cable Fly x 12

Collection


The cable machine is a great workout tool for any part of your body, especially your chest. For all the dumbbell and barbell chest exercises that can be done on a cable machine, there are alternatives that are just as good if not better.

Doing the exercises given in this article will give your chest a complete workout, focusing equal parts on each part of your breasts for improved performance and aesthetics.

What’s your ‘no go’ wired chest workout? Let us know in the comments section below!