Cable Crossovers Exercise to Build Chest Muscles


Why are Cable crossovers such an effective exercise

Cable crossovers are considered one of the best chest muscle exercise for one reason - Constant Tension throughout the exercise.

Consider this. When you do the barbell or dumbbell bench press, there is a momentary loss of tension at some parts of the exercise. As you tend to use some momentum, there is loss of tension.

And as time under tension is the key to building muscle mass, your effort is less rewarded than it would be otherwise if operated under constant tension.

Enter Cable Crossovers exercise.

You can do them many ways: Standing Cable Crossovers, Bent Forward or even Flat Bench Cable Crossovers Exercises to Build huge Pectorals. Remember Cable provides constant tension helping build massive pecs.

Standing Cable Crossovers Exercise

Purpose - To develop and define Inner pectoral muscles.

Cable provides constant resistance and helps develop central chest muscles and providing the much needed striations and inner pecs bodybuilders crave for.

Execution - This exercise is done on a cable machine with overhead pulleys.


  1. Standing with a runners stance {one leg forward, one leg backward} grab hold of the handles of overhead pulleys on both sides.
  2. Bend slightly forwards at torso and extend your arms sideways as in shoulder laterals feeling a good stretch in your chest muscles.
  3. Now bring the handles downward towards the center of the chest and get a good chest contraction. Your arms should be about 45 degree angle with the torso.
  4. Unlike chest flyes, you can crossover the centre to get full Pec contraction.
  5. Slowly, under constant tension, without jerking, get return to the starting position with arms just at the shoulder level, and NOT behind the shoulders at any time.

Little Confusion: To cross over or Not

There are conflicting suggestions when it comes to crossing your arms over to the other side. But if you ask me then you CAN crossover.

I say this because there are exercises called Internal rotations used by Rotator cuff experts in shoulder rehab and are safe. Even more, they are important as the shoulder joint functions to rotate the arm internally as it does externally.

Bottom Line - You can crossover the arms at the low position and get a complete chest muscle contraction.

Cable Crossovers Variations.

Bent Forward Cable Crossovers

This exercise is done with two floor level pulleys and arms are brought in from below-upwards and crossing in the middle.

Flat Bench Cable Crossovers

This exercise is done with two floor level pulleys lying on a bench just like Dumbbell Flyes.

Points to Remember

  • Exhale while you exert.
  • Crossover your arms in the center.

More Chest Exercises Recommends

Blast your Bench Program by Lee Hayward

Click here to read more about Blast Your Bench Program


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