6. Cable chest press
How to do it: Evenly position the cables at about chest height on a cable machine. Take hold of the handles, and stand so you’re facing away from the machine. Pull the handles close to your chest, then step into a split stance to create a solid base. Make sure you grab the handles and get them in front of your chest before you step away from the machine, rather than stepping and then reaching back. “If the weight is heavy, reaching too far back can cause shoulder and rotator cuff issues,” King says.
Once you’re stable, face your palms to one another, and press the cables out until your arms are straight. “Try to keep your deltoids in line with your ears and your shoulders back, so your chest is doing most of the work,” King says.
Why it’s effective: The cables stimulate your muscles differently from free weights, because you’re working against constant resistance. “The dynamic nature of having a load pulling you back while you press increases time under tension on the muscle, which increases protein synthesis and growth,” King says.
Pro tips: If it’s too easy, try to touch the palms of your hands together while keeping your shoulders back. If it’s too hard, use a light resistance band anchored to something secure and mimic the motion to condition your muscles.
Note: Image shows palms facing down, not facing one another (as instructed).Back to top