Cable fly: Muscle Worked, Alternate, Variations

If you want to build your pectoral muscles, cable fly is one of the best exercises you can do for the pectoralis major.

As you strengthen, you challenge all of the chest muscle groups in different ways in order to grow them. You need variety, intensity, and frequency to get that. Cable chest flies are one of the best ways to add variety to chest exercises and strengthen the pectoral muscles.

We’ll be covering several variations such as Low to Mid cable pec flys, low to high Cable Flys, High cable fly and single Arm Cable Flys.

First, we’ll take a closer look at the chest anatomy and exercise mechanics that help to effectively target the chest muscle.

Know more About Chest Muscles

The muscles of the chest consist of the pectoralis major and the pectoralis minor.

The pectoralis major itself is comprised of two heads, each of which may be worked differently depending on the angle of adduction; an upward angle of movement emphasizes the upper, or clavicular head, while a lower angle emphasizes the lower, or sternal, head of the muscle.

The pectoralis minor is the triangle-shaped muscle located under the pectoralis major, a layer deeper, and draws the shoulder blades down and forward.

Cable fly

What is Cable Chest Fly

The Cable chest fly is the best chest exercise that can help to train the chest at various angles and strengthen the chest and shoulders.

There are many different types of cable fly exercises that can be used to train the upper, inner, and lower chest.

Depending on how you position your arms or adjust the cables, you can target your chest from every angle. The distance between the body and the machine can also create a tremendous stretch, all of which can contribute to great chest development.

Yet, the likelihood of seeing someone do it correctly is far smaller. Often the weights selected are too heavy, placing excessive pressure on the delicate shoulder joint, forcing a movement range that’s too narrow, and ensuring that momentum does more of the lifting than the muscles. In short, it’s a waste of time.

Benefits of the Cable Chest Fly

  • For people who experience discomfort in their joints during the bench press, cable flys are a great alternative. With proper shoulder-blade stability, the cable chest fly changes the angle of the movement enough to limit the potential stress on the joints.
  • Cable pec flys are more evenly distributed, and you have more of a constant load on your chest muscles throughout the whole range of motion. That’s not something that can be said of bench-pressing variations or dumbbell flys.
  • The cable setup gives your muscles almost uninterrupted time under tension, and a huge pump — each of which can help optimize muscle growth.
  • The Cable pec fly helps to train the chest at various angles, adopting a low-to-high motion with the cable chest fly exercise will target the upper fibers of the chest and doing high to low fly target lower fiber of the chest.

Muscle Worked

The Cable chest fly primarily works the pectoralis major muscles, In addition to its target, the main pec muscle.

Cable fly has the involvement of a number of synergist muscles, these muscles include, rhomboids, levator scapulae, anterior deltoids, and latissimus dorsi. It is also assisted by are the biceps brachii, the brachialis, and the brachioradialis and Triceps.

A handful of other muscles play the role of stabilizer muscles, include your wrist flexors, obliques, and rectus abdominis.

The erector spinae muscles of your back act as an antagonist stabilizer, helping to keep the correct position of your joints as you perform the exercise.

6 Best Cable Fly variations

Here the Best Cable chest fly variation that help to build bigger and wider Chest.

1. Standing Cable Fly (Middle Cable Fly)

Cable Pec Fly aka Cable Crossover fly Exercises helps to build huge Pectorals. Crossover provides constant tension in helping build massive pecs.

Middle cable fly Exercise helps to develop and define the lower and the Inner chest muscles.

Cable Crossovers

Muscles Worked

Primary: Pectoralis.

Secondary: Anterior deltoid, lats, Biceps, rhomboid

How To Do

  1. In a standing position, grab and holds the handles of overhead pulleys on both sides.
  2. Bend slightly forwards and extend your arms, feeling a good stretch in your chest muscles.
  3. Now flex your arms with elbows slightly bent and get a good chest contraction.
  4. Unlike chest flies, you can cross over the center to get full Pec contraction.

Tip

  • Breathe in on the relaxation phase and breathe out when contracting, keeping your head up at all times.
  • Squeeze your chest at the end of the movement.

2. Low Cable Fly (Low to High Cable Fly)

The standing low to high cable fly is a variation of the chest fly and an exercise used to strengthen the pushing muscles of the body including the chest, biceps, and shoulders.

The cable provides constant tension and helps to develop and define upper and inner chest.

The cable helps develop upper chest muscles and provides much-needed stress for those who want to build up their muscles.

Low Pulley Cable Crossovers

Muscles Worked

Primary: Upper pec

Secondary: Anterior deltoid, Biceps

How To Do

  1. Set both pulleys as low as possible and select the desired weight. In a standing position, grab and hold the handles of overhead pulleys on both sides.
  2. Bend slightly forwards, and extend your arms, feeling a good stretch in your chest muscles.
  3. Bend your elbows slightly, pull your hands toward each other in wide arcs in front of you, pausing when your hands touch.
  4. Slowly lower back to the starting position and repeat for the desired number of repetitions.

Tip

  • To maintain your balance, take a staggered stance.
  • When you breathe in, bring the handles up and together.
  • Control the weight as you bring your arms back down.

3. High Cable Fly (High to Low Cable Fly)

The High To Low Cable Fly is a variation of the chest fly is a great exercise to target the lower portion of your chest.

High to low cable fly is an exercise machine exercise that primarily targets the chest and to a lesser degree also targets the shoulders and triceps.

High Cable Fly (High to Low Cable Fly)

Muscles Worked

Primary: Lower pec

Secondary: Anterior delt, lats Biceps , rhomboid.

How To Do

  1. Set both pulleys as High as possible and select the desired weight. In a standing position, grab the handles with a neutral grip.
  2. Bend slightly forwards, and extend your arms, feeling a good stretch in your chest muscles.
  3. Bend your elbows slightly, pull your hands (high to low) toward each other in wide arcs in front of you, pausing when your hands touch.
  4. Slowly lower back to the starting position and repeat for the desired number of repetitions.

Tip

  • Ensure you maintain some tension in your abs and don’t allow your lower back to arch excessively.
  • Focus on form before choosing a heavy weight.
  • As you pull the handles together, breathe out.

4. Incline Cable Fly

Incline Cable fly is one of the most suitable exercises for isolating the upper chest muscles.

Performing this exercise with cables instead of dumbbells allows for constant tension, which helps build Upper Chest fibers. This constant tension cannot be achieved with dumbbells.

Incline Cable Fly

Muscles Worked

Primary: Upper chest

Secondary: Anterior deltoid, triceps, and biceps

How To Do

  1. Set an incline bench at a 30-to 45-degree angle. Lie on the bench with your feet flat on the floor.
  2. Lift your arms straight up from your shoulders and hold the cable directly over your upper chest.
  3. Slowly lower your arms out to your sides until your wrists come to about shoulder level or slightly above.
  4. Bring your arms back toward the midline of your body, focusing on using your pec muscles to draw them back together.

Tips

  • Vary the position of the bench to hit different angles of the upper chest.
  • Hold and contract the pec muscles when hands are together.
  • Set the bench at about 30-45 degrees inclined. Do not go more upright because the stress will shift to your shoulders instead of your chest.

5. Decline Cable Fly

Decline Cable fly is one of the most suitable exercises for isolating the lower chest muscles.

Doing this exercise with cables instead of dumbbells allows for constant tension to help in building the lower chest fibers.

Decline Dumbbell Fly

Muscles Worked

Primary: Lower pec

Secondary: Anterior delt, triceps.

How To Do

  1. Set a Decline bench at a 30-degree angle. Lie on the bench with your feet flat on the footpad or the roller.
  2. Lift your arms straight up from your shoulders and hold the cable handle directly over your chest.
  3. Slowly lower your arms out to your sides until your wrists come to about shoulder level or slightly above.
  4. Bring your arms back toward the midline of your body, focusing on using your lower pec muscles to draw them back together.

Tips

  • Breathe out as you exert.
  • When your hands are together, hold and squeeze the chest muscles.
  • Set the bench at a 30-degree (decline) angle.

6. Single Arm Chest Fly

The one-arm fly is a unilateral variation of the fly. It is used by those who would like to focus on the inner chest.

During Exercise, emphasis is placed on bringing the resistance further across the body and past the midline, thus extending the range of motion to force an intense peak contraction in the inner pec.

Single Arm Chest Fly

Muscles Worked

Primary: Inner and upper Chest

Secondary: Anterior delt, triceps, and core.

How To Do

  1. Begin by moving the pulleys to the high position, select the resistance to be used, and take a handle in one hand.
  2. Extend your arm and make sure to have a slight bend in your elbow.
  3. Pull your hand to the midline of your chest while keeping your upper body straight.
  4. Hold for a second, and go back to starting position to complete one rep.

Tips

  • Always keep your elbows slightly bent for maximum inner pec activation.
  • Ensure to keep your core engaged throughout the movement and breathe
  • Keep your motions controlled and avoid jerky movements.

7. Seated Cable Pec Fly

Seated Cable Pec Fly in the seated variation of cable fly. It provides constant tension that helps build massive pecs.

Cable attachments provide constant resistance and help develop central chest muscles. Bodybuilders crave the stress on the chest provided by cable exercises.

Seated Cable Pec Fly.

How To Do

  1. Seated on a bench, take hold of each cable and position the handles directly in front of your chest
  2. Extend your arms, feeling a good stretch in your chest muscles.
  3. Now flex your arms with elbows slightly bent and get a good chest contraction.
  4. Unlike pec fly, you can cross over the center to get full Pec contraction.

Tip

  • Hold and contract the chest muscles when hands are together.
  • Always keep your arms bent to protect the shoulder joint.
  • Breathe in on the relaxation phase and breathe out when contracting, keeping your head up at all times.

Best Alternative of Cable flyes

1. Seated Machine Fly

Machine fly is a machine exercise that primarily targets the chest. You really need the machine fly equipment.

There are many different machines fly variations that you can try out, which require different types of machine fly equipment, or may even require no equipment at all.

Machine Fly

2. Dumbbell fly

The dumbbell fly utilizes a chest fly movement pattern to isolate the muscles of the chest, help the muscles to grow better and become stronger.

It is often thought of as a classic bodybuilding movement, as the goal of the exercise is to isolate the chest for aesthetic purposes. The dumbbell fly targets all areas of the pecs, but most significantly the inner chest.

Dumbbell Fly

3. Squeeze Press

Squeeze press is an alternative and free weights exercise that primarily targets the inner chest, and to a lesser degree that also targets the shoulders and the triceps.

This Exercise can be integrated into the chest workout to increase muscle hypertrophy, and create chiseled and defined pectorals.

Squeeze Press is a good alternative to cable fly that you can add to your chest workout.

Plate Squeeze Press

4. Push-Ups

Push-Ups are the best bodyweight calisthenics exercise to build your entire upper body, shoulders, chest, and arms.

Push-Ups can be a real challenge if done in various forms. Intensity is the key to building muscle and strength.

Push Ups

Takeaway

Cable flyes are, for the most part, underrated and often overlooked. They are just as important as the bench press if you want to get that well-shaped chest and the thickness.

The cable chest fly may be a good exercise for building strength in your chest, shoulder, and arm muscles. If you are a beginner, start with a lightweight and increase the amount of weight each week as you build strength.

Stay Fit, Live a Happy and Healthy Life

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Video illustration of 9 BEST CABLE CHEST WORKOUT TO BUILD MASSIVE CHEST

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