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The Best Cable Rear Delt Workouts Routines

Balance your upper body and improve your posture with the best cable machine rear delt exercises!

If there were an award for the most commonly under-developed muscle in the human body, it would probably go to the cable rear delt workouts deltoids. Located on the back of your shoulders, the rear delts are often out of sight, so they’re out of mind. Very few lifters single out their cable rear delt workouts for direct training.

cable rear delt workouts

In comparison, the anterior or front deltoid is on constant show, so most people train it hard and often with exercises like overhead presses and front raises. Additionally, the anterior delts are involved in every chest exercise you do. As a result, the anterior deltoids are seldom underdeveloped.

Weak, small cable rear delt workouts can hurt your shoulder health, posture, and appearance. Almost everyone who lifts weights needs to pay more attention to this often-forgotten muscle. It might be small, but it’s still important!

cable rear delt workouts

In this article, we reveal the best cable exercises for targeting your rear delts.

Deltoid Anatomy

Your shoulders are made up of three major muscles – the deltoids. The deltoids work together but can also be emphasized and trained separately. The three deltoids are:

cable rear delt workouts
cable rear delt workouts

Anterior deltoid

Located at the front of your shoulder, the anterior deltoid is responsible for flexion, horizontal flexion, and medial rotation of the shoulder joint. As such, the front deltoid is involved in all chest and overhead pressing exercises. The anterior deltoid is generally the largest and most well-developed of the three.

Medial deltoid

Also known as the lateral deltoid, this muscle is located on the side of your shoulder. Its primary role is the abduction of the shoulder joint. Bodybuilders do exercises like dumbbell and cable lateral raises to target this muscle. The medial deltoid is responsible for the width of your shoulders and your V-taper.

Posterior deltoid

Positioned on the back of your shoulder, the posterior deltoid is responsible for extension, horizontal extension, and external rotation of the shoulder joint. While it is involved in most back exercises, bodybuilders typically do more pushing than pulling, which is why the posterior deltoid is often underdeveloped compared to the anterior deltoid.

Underdeveloped posterior deltoids can lead to poor posture, less upper body mass, and an unbalanced physique. It could also increase your risk of shoulder pain and injury. Weak posterior deltoids can impede your performance of several vital exercises, not least lat pull-downs, pull-ups/chin-ups, all types of row, and biceps curls.

That’s because the posterior deltoids act as stabilizers during these movements. If they fail before the muscle you’re targeting, your set will come to a premature halt, and your workout won’t be as productive.

So, if you want bigger biceps or lats, you MUST also strengthen your posterior deltoids!

Why Use Cables, Anyway?

Cables are arguably the best way to work your cable rear delt workouts. Using cables means you can keep the target muscles under almost constant tension and really hammer home that all-important mind-muscle connection.

You can also use a cable machine to hit your cable rear delt workouts from numerous angles. A small change in joint angle can have a significant impact on the effect of whatever exercise you are performing.

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Finally, most cable machines have incremental weight stacks that start with a low load. The cable rear delt workouts is not especially strong, so you don’t need a lot of weight to fatigue it. That’s especially true if you’ve been neglecting your cable rear delt workouts recently.

Yes, you CAN use dumbbells and barbells to train your cable rear delt workouts, but in nine cases out of ten, a cable machine will produce better results.

The Best Cable Rear Delt Exercises

Want to beef up your rear delts with cables? These are the best exercises for your goal!

1. Cable face pull

The cable face pull is one of the best cable rear delt workouts you can do. Not only does it target your posterior deltoids, but it also works your middle trapezius and rhomboids. These muscles often work together and are crucial for shoulder stability and posture.

So, do yourself a favor and do a few sets of cable face pulls 2-3 times a week. Your shoulders will thank you!

How to do it:

  1. Attach a two-sided rope handle to a cable pulley set to around chest level.
  2. Stand with your feet hip-width apart so that you’re in an upright posture.
  3. Grab both sides of the handle with a neutral grip. Place one foot in front of the other for balance.
  4. Lower your elbows slightly but keep hands at head level.
  5. Pull the rope toward your face as far as possible while pulling both handles apart.
  6. Extend your arms and repeat for the desired number of reps.

Pro tip: Avoid using your lower back during this exercise by sitting backward on an exercise bench with the backrest set to vertical. Rest your chest on the backrest and keep it there for the duration of your set, like this:

2. Seated wide grip cable row

Regular seated rows are an excellent lat exercise that also works your posterior deltoids. However, you can make them more cable rear delt workouts-centric by adopting a wider grip and pulling the bar into your chest instead of your abs.

You won’t be able to lift as much weight as usual, as this is not a very biomechanically efficient movement. However, you’ll really feel it in your cable rear delt workouts.

How to do it:

  1. Attach a long bar to your seated row machine. Hold the handle with an overhand, wider-than-shoulder-width grip. Sit up straight with your knees slightly bent and core braced. Pull your shoulders down and back.
  2. Leading with your elbows and keeping your wrists straight, bend your arms and pull the bar into your chest.
  3. Extend your arms and repeat.

Pro tip: Try doing a set of wide-grip seated rows to the chest immediately followed by a set of regular seated rows to really pump up your rear deltoids AND build your lats.cable rear delt workouts


3. Reverse cable crossover

The cable crossover machine isn’t just a great way to train your chest. You can use this popular exercise station to train your rear delts, too. Reverse cable crossovers allow you to isolate your rear delts with laser-like accuracy. However, you’ll need to go light as this exercise is far more challenging than it looks because of the long levers involved. cable rear delt workouts

How to do it:

  1. Stand in the middle of a cable crossover machine. Using the high pulleys, hold the left cable in your right hand and the right cable in your left hand. Cross your wrists in front of you with your arms extended but elbows slightly bent. Brace your core and pull your shoulders down and back.
  2. Open your arms and pull your elbows back until they are slightly behind your shoulders. Really squeeze your shoulders together to maximize rear delt muscle engagement.
  3. Return to the starting position and repeat.

4. Cable external rotation

External rotation is one of the most underused functions of the posterior deltoids. This exercise is often thought of as a rotator cuff exercise, which it is, but you’ll also feel it deep in your cable rear delt workouts.

Don’t go too heavy with this exercise; it’s a subtle, controlled movement that works best with light weights and medium to high reps.

How to do it:

  1. Set an adjustable cable machine to around waist height. Attach a D-shaped handle to the pulley.
  2. Stand side-on to the weight stack and hold the handle in your furthest hand. Bend your elbow to 90 degrees, tuck your upper arm into your side, and position your forearm across your upper abdomen.
  3. Without twisting your hips or shoulders, rotate your arm outward as far as you comfortably can.
  4. Return to the starting position and repeat.

Pro tip: Place a folded towel under your arm and hold it there throughout the exercise to remind you to keep your elbow close to your ribs for maximal muscle engagement.cable rear delt workouts


5. Single-arm rear delt fly

The advantage of this exercise over other rear deltoid moves is that it allows you to train one arm at a time. This helps strengthen the mind-muscle connection and means you can identify and fix any left-to-right strength imbalances. As an added benefit, you just need a single cable to do this exercise, so it’s ideal for busy or less well-equipped gyms.cable rear delt workouts

How to do it:

  1. Stand side-on to a low pulley machine. Bend your knees slightly, hinge forward from your hips, and hold the cable with your furthest hand. Brace your abs and pull your shoulders down and back.
  2. Draw your arm across and up until it’s roughly parallel to the floor. Keep your hand in line with your shoulder.
  3. Return to the starting position and repeat.cable rear delt workouts

Pro tip: You can also do this exercise using both arms simultaneously, which can be a useful time-saving option for some lifters. However, you will lose the unilateral benefits of training each arm independently.cable rear delt workouts

6. Cable supine reverse fly

The cable supine reverse fly is an effective isolation exercise for the posterior deltoids. Done face up on a flat bench, it provides lots of support for your lower back and also stops you from cheating as you cannot use your legs or upper body to help raise the weight.cable rear delt workouts

How to do it:

  1. Begin by setting up the pulley handles at the highest point on each side.
  2. Grab the left pulley with your right hand and the right pulley with your left hand so the cables cross each other.
  3. Lie down on the bench with your shoulders level with the pulleys.
  4. Pull your arms out and down until your hands are level with your shoulders.
  5. Return to the top of the movement, and then repeat for the desired number of reps.

7. Cable overhead press

Most overhead pressing variations emphasize your anterior and medial deltoids. This exercise puts more tension on your rear delts as you’ll need to work extra hard to stop your arms from being pulled forward and down.

How to do it:

  1. Attach a straight bar to a low cable. Grip the handle with an overhand, slightly wider than shoulder-width grip. Curl or clean the handle up to your shoulders. Make sure you are facing the weight stack.
  2. Brace your core, pull your shoulders down and back, and stand with your feet roughly shoulder-width apart.
  3. Press the handle up and overhead to arms’ length.
  4. Lower the bar back to your shoulders and repeat.

Pro tip: Think about pressing the bar up and back in an arc to maximize rear deltoid engagement. This will also figure up your middle and lower traps and rhomboids.cable rear delt workouts

8. Cable Cuban press

The Cuban press is a well-known, if seldom performed, total shoulder exercise. It was once the “secret weapon” of the Cuban Olympic weightlifting team. This exercise works all three deltoid heads with a significant emphasis on that all-important cable rear delt workouts.

How to do it:

  1. Attach a straight, revolving bar to a low pulley. Alternatively, if using a dual low-cable machine, you can use two D-shaped handles.
  2. Hold the bar/handles in front of your thighs with an overhand, slightly wider than shoulder-width grip. Brace your core.
  3. Bend your arms and upright row the bar up to your sternum.
  4. Next, rotate your arms out and away, raising the bar to your forehead.
  5. Finally, press the handle up and overhead to arms’ length.
  6. Return to the starting position by reversing this motion.

Pro tip: You can also do this exercise with dumbbells or a barbell, so you really have no excuse not to include it in your workouts!

Wrapping Up

Are you guilty of neglecting your rear deltoids? Don’t fear – you aren’t alone. A whole lot of lifters neglect all about their posterior deltoids as a result of they will’t see them. It’s all the time extra motivating to coach the muscle tissues you possibly can see within the mirror, proper?

The excellent news is that the rear delts are very responsive, and it received’t take a lot work to deliver them as much as par together with your different shoulder muscle tissues. In spite of everything, they’re fairly small and don’t want heavy weights. You shouldn’t have any downside doing 2-3 units of 1-2 exercises for them a few occasions every week with out rising fatigue or needing much more restoration.

You may even prepare your rear delts at residence, as most of the exercises on this article will also be carried out utilizing resistance bands.

So, stop ignoring your rear delts and, as a substitute, begin working them arduous and sometimes. They’ll quickly start to develop and add loads to your shoulder look, efficiency, posture, and joint well being.

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