Cable crossover: features, how-to, variations

Cable crossover

Looking at people doing the crossover exercise, we are once again convinced of the truth of the saying that there are as many opinions as there are people (does stretching burn fat).

The bench press grips does is not the basic exercise on the chest, however, the correct technique is the only one that should be observed if you want to achieve the goal.

For gym-goers who want “massive chest” the fundamental exercises are dumbbell bench press, dumbbell fly. There is nothing surprising in that, since the listed exercises are considered the best for gaining mass. But, gaining mass is half the battle, because you need to be able to feed it, and block simulators and isolating movements help to do this. Speaking of the female breast, it is clear that a good size and well “set.” But, on the male’s chest, comparable to the creations of architects, you need to work hard to make it powerful and attractive.

A beautiful man’s chest should consist of (in the manner of armor) two massive plates with clearly visible separation of the lower and upper sections, there should be a deep border separating the left and right halves (middle line). Basic trainings do not help to achieve this, therefore the isolating crossover and dumbbell fly are important.

Cable Crossover Muscles Worked

What happens to muscles during a crossover exercise resembling wings: the load is directed to the muscles of the chest, triceps do not participate in the work, the only joint moves – the shoulder. In a variant, the classic goal is the lower head of the pectoralis major muscle. Its assistants are the upper head (clavicular) and the pectoralis minor muscle, as well as the individual muscles of the back and front deltas. The stabilizers are the muscles of the forearms, upper shoulder girdle along with supercompensation definition / straight abdomen, extensors of the spine.

More clearly, this shows the muscular atlas:

Cable crossover flys - Abdominal Muscles - Fitness VIP

Cable Machine Workout Benefits For The Muscles Of The Chest

Do not ignore the crossover exercise, because it carries a lot of benefits for the pectoral muscles:

  • there is no bench, i.e. back support, which allows the shoulder blades to move naturally and freely while performing crossover exercises. Training unloads the back;
  • pectoral muscles are constantly tense during the training. The crossover gives the muscles of the chest smooth and continuous resistance along the entire trajectory due to the specific design. It turns out that in comparison with impulsive training with free weights, the load, in the case of a crossover, in the muscle is present in the entire range. In addition, small muscles are drawn into the work, which cannot be “hooked” in classical exercises;
  • the cable structure gives how to stretch the muscles of the chest, due to which they receive a lot of nutrients and oxygen, which is important for the progress of the pectoral muscles and development;
  • Crossover exercise has a positive effect on the aesthetic component of the chest, which takes on contoured shapes. In addition, contrary to the opinion of athletes and many trainers, it does not set the task of obtaining a striated chest, but is aimed at reducing body fat in the neckline;
  • the load on the shoulders is reduced. It is not comfortable for the shoulders to work with large tonnage in the bench press, because it is dangerous to get injured. Exercise crossover gives a not so destructive load, preserving the muscles of the shoulders;
  • multivariance. Different angles of influence and different position of the body allow you to diversify trainings, shift emphasis, therefore, the pectoral muscles have the possibility of harmonious development “on all fronts.”

Cable Flyes Step By Step Technique


It would seem that a simple machine is easy to use: just pull the cable. But in practice, only 6-7 out of 10 athletes, do the right thing. So that there is no option to perform incorrectly, the technique needs to be studied.

Step one.

  • Set the weight on each side of the treadmill.
  • Take a stable position in the center, grasp both handles, take the “multiplier” position by taking a step forward (straight back).
  • Tilt the body slightly forward, after which, begin to spread the arms until the extension of the pectoral muscles, holding bent elbows at the back.
  • Take a breath.

Step Two

  • Exhale and start pulling the handles toward the center of the body along a wide arc.
  • As soon as they enter the target area of the hands, bring them together slightly and hold on a couple of accounts in this position.
  • Return slowly along the same arc in the starting position, experiencing slight stretching in the pectoral muscles.
  • The number of repetitions performed must match the set.
  • The body and arms are motionless, the shoulder joint moves.

To make it clearer, the picture is shown:

Exercise Crossover Technique

Cable Flys Common Mistakes

In crossover following mistakes are especially common:

  • pressing the elbows to the body;
  • rounding of the back;
  • excessive bending of the elbow joint.

Exercise Crossover Bugs

Basic Rules For Crossover In A Cable Machine

If you’ll remembers these tips, the crossover exercise technique will be correct:

  • weight in the training is important, but no less important is the technique, which provides for a wide range of movements and compression and stretching of the pectoral muscles;
  • the chest is additionally squeezed at the intersection of the hands (at the final point of movement) keep this position for a couple seconds;
  • movements should resemble “hugs”;
  • impulsive movements are not permissible. Perform everything in a controlled and smooth manner;
  • control the contractions of the muscles of the chest: it is due to them that squeezes are made. To do this, the chest should protrude forward, and the shoulders retract;
  • hand movements should be symmetrical.

Cable Chest Workout Variations

The main trump of the crossover exercise is the flexibility of the load distribution on the pectoral muscles. The emphasis depends on the position of the hands. The load can be shifted to any part of the chest: bottom, middle or top.

Variations are as follows:

Exercise Crossover Variations

How To Pump The Pectoral Muscles Effectively

The increase in muscle mass depends on the degree of impact on the muscles of the chest.

To achieve its maximum value, we will tell you two secrets:

In the training program, it is recommended to pair two exercises that are performed without stopping, i.e. workout: do 25-30 classic push-ups, then, go to the simulator – 10-15 flyes. After a rest of 45 seconds, a new cycle. This kind of training is called the “push-up superset.” You need to complete 3 cycles, upon completion of which the muscles will be pleasantly surprised and you will be pleased with the growth.

Reduction of arms in the crossover simulator and push-ups

Horizontal And Seated Cable Crossovers

A more effective exercise compared to the classic exercise for the chest muscles in a crossover, but rarely performed by athletes. Change to horizontal, the plane of the hands, works on the mass of the pectoral muscles. To complete the training, you need to place a horizontal or inclined bench in the center of the machine and lie down on it. Training in a crossover is similar to dumbbell fly, but it is effective because for a second the load does not leave the pectoral muscles.

No less productive training is seated crossover. In this position, the legs and back are not pulled into the work, and the crossover exercise affects the pectoral muscles with jewelry accuracy and does not “smear” over the body.

Exercise crossover lying on a bench

Important: performing horizontal crossover, change the position of the hands from rep to rep, moving up the left and right hands alternately.