This Unique Cable Machine Move Will Torch Your Triceps

·2 min read

When it comes to challenging your triceps, sometimes it's necessary to pull away from the pushdowns and other basics and get creative. Giving this cable triceps pull apart a try may be the solution for injecting new enthusiasm to a mundane muscle-building routine.

At first glance, this cable variation from Men’s Health fitness director Ebenezer Samuel, C.S.C.S., looks somewhat similar in execution to some standard exercises that target the deltoids. A small tweak, however, allows the pull-apart to become a fantastic finishing move that will certainly torch your triceps.

Normally when we think of pull-aparts, the resistance band variation in which the main focus is on retracting your scapula to target your traps, rear delts, and rhomboids comes to mind. Similar in style and execution as well is the cable rear-delt fly, in which we grab the opposite cables and once again aim to target the rear delts by retracting the scapula.

With the cable triceps pull-apart however, the focus switches from the scapula to the triceps. You'll still get some back work—Samuel says that just pulling into the position instantly fires up the mid-back stabilizers and rotator cuff muscles—but since your main focus is on extending the elbows for a triceps contraction, your triceps will be receiving much of the attention.

A major benefit here according to Samuel is that you'll be able to target the muscle from a different plane (the frontal plane, specifically), making it a rare arm-building move that isn't in the front-to-back sagittal plane. That variety can be valuable if you're looking to switch up a stale routine.

How to Do the Cable Triceps Pull-Apart

●To begin the cable triceps pull-apart, set up in a half-kneeling position in front of a dual cable machine (or, if need be, a pair of resistance bands mounted similarly).

●Grab the opposite cable to each hand (right hand, left cable; left hand, right cable). You don't need to use a handle on the cable; grip the cord just above the attachment point.

●Focus on keeping your elbows and shoulders in the same plane (in relation to your torso), with your elbows slightly lower than your shoulders.

●Fire up your mid-back stabilizers and rotator cuff muscles, then aim to move only at the elbow joint, extending your arms and getting a good solid squeeze on your triceps.

●Perform 3 sets of 12 to 15 reps.

Even though your shoulders are stabilized laterally and you’re still working those posterior muscles, your triceps should be doing the majority of the work with each rep. Try not to “cheat” by using your shoulder muscles—this should be all triceps.

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