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

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

Cable fly Muscle Worked

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

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.

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 chest 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 chest 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 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 biceps brachii, brachialis, triceps brachii, 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 fly variation that help to build bigger and wider Chest.

1. Standing Cable Fly (Middle Cable Fly)

Cable Fly aka Cable Crossover fly Exercises helps to build huge Pectorals. Crossover provides constant tension in helping build massive pecs. Standing Cable Crossover Exercise helps to develop and define the lower and the Inner pectoral muscles. Cable provides constant resistance and helps develop the lower and the central chest muscles by providing the much-needed stress in the lower and the inner pecs.

Cable Crossovers

Muscles Worked

Primary: Pectoralis.

Secondary: Anterior deltoid, latissimus dorsi (back), Biceps Brachii, rhomboids (back).

Steps

  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 crossover 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, helping build upper pecs. Low to High Cable Fly exercise helps to develop and define upper and inner pectoral muscles. Cable provides constant resistance and helps develop central chest muscles and providing the much-needed stress and inner pecs, for which bodybuilders crave.

Low Pulley Cable Crossovers

Muscles Involved

Primary: Upper pectoralis

Secondary: Anterior deltoid, Biceps Brachii

Steps

  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 keep your balance stand in a staggered stance.
  • Breathe out as you lift 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 pectoralis

Secondary: Anterior deltoid, latissimus dorsi (back), Biceps Brachii, rhomboids (back).

Steps

  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.
  • Breathe out as you pull the handles together.

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 Involved

Primary: Upper pectoralis

Secondary: Anterior deltoid, triceps, and biceps brachii

Steps

  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

  • Exhale while you exert.
  • Vary the position of the bench to hit different angles of the upper chest.
  • Hold and contract the chest muscles when hands are together.
  • Set the bench at about 30-45 degrees inclined. Do not go more upright as the stress shifts more to shoulders rather than chest area.

5. Decline Cable Fly

Decline Cable fly is one of the most suitable exercises for isolating the lower chest muscles. Performing this exercise with cables instead of dumbbells allows for constant tension to help in building the lower Chest fibers. This constant tension cannot be achieved with the Dumbbells.

Decline Dumbbell Fly

Muscles Involved

Primary: Lower pectoralis.

Secondary: Anterior deltoid, triceps.

Steps

  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

  • Exhale while you exert.
  • Vary the position of the bench to hit different angles of the upper chest.
  • Hold and contract the chest muscles when hands are together.
  • Set bench at about 30 degrees Decline.

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 side. 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 Involved

Primary: Inner pectoralis major and upper pectoralis major.

Secondary: Anterior deltoid, triceps, and core.

Steps

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

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 machine 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

Muscles Involved

Primary: Lower pectoralis.

Secondary: Anterior deltoid, Biceps, and Serratus anterior.

Steps

  1. Sit on the machine, taking care to place your back flat against the pad.
  2. Grab the vertical handles with elbows slightly bent.
  3. Squeeze the handles together until they touch in front of your chest.
  4. Let your hands move back to the starting position, keeping your elbows up.

Tips

  • Your upper arms should be parallel to the floor.
  • Keep your eyes straight ahead while performing the exercise.

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

Muscles Involved

Primary: Inner and upper pectoralis major.

Secondary: Anterior deltoid, triceps.

Steps

  1. Lie on the flat bench with your feet flat on the floor.
  2. Lift your arms straight up from your shoulders and the dumbbells 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

  • Perform press in a controlled manner.

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 the best exercise that you can easily add to your chest workout at home. You can use a dumbbell instead of a plate. if the plate is not available.

Plate Squeeze Press

Muscles Involved

Primary: Inner pectoralis major.

Secondary: Shoulders, triceps.

Steps

  1. Grab 2-3 plates and squeeze them together with your palms.
  2. Bring the plates to the middle of your chest, extend your arms forward and slightly upward.
  3. Contract your chest as hard as possible.
  4. Reverse your arms in the exact same movement pattern.

Tips

  • Use a controlled tempo to push your arms up and forward.
  • Remember to breathe properly.

4. Push-Ups

Push-Ups is the best bodyweight calisthenics exercise to build your entire upper body, shoulders, chest, and arms. Check how to do them correctly and blast your muscles at home or at Gym.

It is used to be done to build muscle and strength in the chest, shoulders, and arms.

Push-Ups can be a real challenge if done in various forms. Intensity is the key here to Build Muscle and Strength. This exercise is done on the floor, with or without Pushup handles.

Push Ups

Muscles Involved

Primary: Lower pectoralis, Upper pectoralis.

Secondary: Shoulders, triceps.

Steps

  1. Lay face down on the ground with your legs straight, and arms supporting the upper body. Keep your knees off the ground.
  2. Raise yourself off the ground straightening your elbows and your arms. But keep your elbows close to your body.
  3. Raise until your elbows are locked, and pause for a moment at the top of the movement.
  4. Now, lower your body under slow sustained motion, feeling the motion all the way down until your chest is very close to the ground.

Tips

  • Exhale while you exert.
  • For more variations, you do incline push-ups, decline ups.

Takeaway

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

The Cable chest fly may be a good exercise if you’re looking to build strength in your chest, shoulder, and arm muscles. Start with a lightweight if you’re a beginner, and slowly increase the amount of weight each week as you build strength.

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