While travelling, training in a small apartment gym or hotel gym could be better. Unfortunately, these gyms frequently lack the necessary equipment and space to complete a typical whole-body workout.
People frequently walk into these gyms, realize their favourite equipment is missing, and abandon their workout entirely. But don't worry! These facilities almost always have one thing in common: a cable machine.
If you've ever been to a gym, you're probably familiar with the cable machine. This valuable piece of exercise equipment, also known as a pulley machine, is found in many gyms and fitness centres.
Cable machine exercises provide an excellent balance of convenience, versatility, and performance. If you arrive at the gym during peak hour and it's as crowded as a shopping mall on Boxing Day, head to the cable machine to get your workout in. The resistance of the cables allows you to perform various exercises in various directions, allowing you to replicate almost any exercise that can be performed with free weights.
Most people only use cables for a few exercises, but with some imagination, you can quickly assemble an eight-exercise full-body workout. This is how it's done.
TOTAL BODY WORKOUT WITH CABLE MACHINE
Perform these exercises separately for 3-4 sets of 8-15 reps, resting for 30 seconds to 1 minute between sets. Next, Superset opposing (antagonist) exercises for 3-4 sets of 8-15 reps each. Alternate between the two opposing exercises, finishing all sets without rest. Rest for about 1-2 minutes between supersets. An example of a superset includes working your quads and hamstrings and your triceps and biceps. All exercises should be done in a circuit for 3-4 sets (rounds) of 8-15 reps each. Complete all exercises in order, with no breaks, resting for about 2-3 minutes only between rounds.
- The Cable Shoulder Press is an exercise variation of the shoulder or overhead press used to develop the front and lateral deltoids. This compound movement not only helps to build muscle and strength, but it also helps to maintain shoulder mobility and has a lot of carryover to an athletic performance by facilitating shoulder joint function.
- Lateral Raises are the most effective exercise for developing broad, capped shoulders. The lateral cable raise is a shoulder exercise that targets the delts' middle fibres, which is the rounded muscle at the very top of each shoulder, while also developing the infraspinatus and subscapularis muscles in your rotator cuff, allowing you to perform a variety of shoulder movements with ease, including internal and external rotations.
- The Cable Lat Pulldown is a great accessory exercise for developing your lats, back deltoids, biceps, and forearms. Lat pulldowns emphasize your latissimus dorsi, the largest muscle in your upper body, due to the movement pattern.
- The Chest Fly is a favourite among bodybuilders because it isolates the chest and maintains tension throughout the exercise. The key here is to "squeeze" when bringing the handles together to contract the muscles fully. To target different areas of the chest, you can also move the cable attachment up and down and work high-to-low or low-to-high.
- The Cable Seated Row is a popular exercise that uses a cable stack to train the upper back muscles, including the lats, traps, rhomboids, and rear deltoids. It also targets the biceps, albeit to a lesser extent. The cable row can be used in various rep ranges, but it is most commonly used in muscle-building workouts or as an accessory movement in strength workouts.
- Face Pulls are the most effective exercise for developing strong, healthy shoulders. Maintain a tight grip on your shoulder blades throughout the movement, and finish by externally rotating your hands up toward your ears. Consider pulling the rope apart rather than just pulling it back.
- The Triceps Pushdown works on all three heads of the muscle. For a complete pushdown, slightly hinge at the hips rather than standing straight up. This exercise can be performed with a variety of attachments, but the rope allows you to pull the ends apart at the bottom of the movement to create a wider range of motion.
- The Cable Curl is more effective than a conventional barbell or dumbbell curls because of the muscle's constant tension. Throughout the movement, keep your elbows close to your sides. Try this with a reverse grip for an even more challenging variation (palms down).
- The Goblet Squats work your quads and are typically performed with a dumbbell or kettlebell, but the cable machine is an excellent alternative. Because the cable pulls you forward, you can sit further back for a deeper, more stable Squat. This exercise is also a good core builder because you must brace yourself hard to stay upright throughout the movement.
- The Cable Forward Lunge works your core and shoulder muscles. Face the cable machine to begin the workout. Set the cable pulley to the lowest setting and hold the handle as if doing a goblet squat. Take a step forward and a deep forward lunge while holding your core tight. At the bottom of each lunge, ensure your knee does not extend beyond your toes, just like in other lunge moves.
- Pull-Throughs are an excellent posterior chain-building exercise because they place little to no load on the spine, unlike many other hamstring/glute movements. It also teaches proper hinge technique by allowing you to slowly push your hips back along the natural plane of tension created by the cable. Maintain a flat back and tucked chin throughout, and finish by tightening the glutes and locking out the knees.
- One of the best exercises for glute strength is the Cable Glute Kickback. When combined with a cable machine and an ankle cuff attachment, this glute isolation exercise can significantly improve your lower body routine. The cable glute kickback primarily works the gluteal muscles: the gluteus maximus, medius, and minimus. The glutes are one of the most powerful and strongest muscles in the human body.
- Cable Crunches have also been referred to as kneeling cable crunches, probably a better name because it describes the action more precisely. These exercises are variations on the weighted crunch, an abdominal muscle-targeting exercise.
- The Cable Pallof Press is an anti-rotation hold exercise that will help you develop a strong core. It's an excellent move for those training for sports that require you to spin on a sixpence at high speed because it helps build core strength to deal with twists and turns without getting hurt. Furthermore, suppose you like your functional workouts to be aesthetically pleasing. In that case, the Pallof press will become your new favourite, sharpening your exterior abs and obliques just as much as your interior core muscles.
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