top of page

Cable Crossover 101 Video Tutorial

Gym Main Variation Strength


Cable Crossover
Cable Crossover

Exercise Synopsis

Target Muscle Group


Secondary Targets



Force Type


Required Equipment

Cable Machine

Fitness Level










The Cable Crossover is a dynamic strength training exercise designed to target the chest muscles, with secondary engagement of the shoulders. Utilizing a cable machine, this exercise involves standing in the center of the machine, gripping the handles attached to the cables in each hand. By positioning oneself between the cable columns, individuals can then perform a controlled and symmetrical movement, crossing the hands over the body's midline while keeping a slight bend in the elbows. This action effectively stimulates the pectoral muscles, promoting chest development and enhancing muscle definition. The Cable Crossover also recruits the shoulders as secondary targets, contributing to overall upper body strength and aesthetics. This exercise stands out for its versatility in allowing individuals to adjust the cable height and angle, providing varied angles of resistance and accommodating different chest workout preferences.

How to Perform

  1. Begin the Cable Crossover exercise by configuring the cable machine; adjust the pulleys to the highest setting on both sides and affix single grip handles to facilitate a full range of motion.

  2. Customize the weight stacks to your desired resistance level, ensuring a challenging yet manageable load, and firmly grasp each handle with your palms facing downward.

  3. Take a step forward, maintaining a stable stance as you prepare for the exercise, with your arms slightly bent at the elbows, chest upright, and gaze forward—establishing the initial position for optimal execution.

  4. Initiate the movement by rotating at the shoulders exclusively, guiding your arms in a controlled circular motion to bring the handles together in front of your body, reaching approximately head height.

  5. Emphasize the contraction by squeezing your chest muscles as the handles converge, promoting effective engagement of the targeted chest muscles.

  6. Gradually lower the weight back to the starting position, maintaining a deliberate pace to maximize eccentric muscle activation, and then proceed to repeat the sequence for the desired number of repetitions.


  1. Prioritize form over the amount of weight lifted when performing the Cable Crossover, recognizing that proper technique is crucial for maximizing the effectiveness of the exercise and minimizing the risk of injury.

  2. Concentrate on achieving a thorough chest contraction during the descent phase of the movement, emphasizing the importance of a strong chest squeeze to fully activate the targeted chest muscles.

  3. Place emphasis on obtaining a deep stretch during the upward phase of the exercise, allowing the chest muscles to experience a full range of motion for optimal muscle engagement and growth.

  4. Maintain a slight bend in your elbows throughout the entire movement, ensuring stability and promoting continuous tension on the chest muscles without fully locking out the joints.

  5. Avoid altering the angle of your arms during the Cable Crossover, as maintaining a consistent angle contributes to muscle isolation and prevents unnecessary stress on the shoulder joints.

How Not to Perform

  1. Avoid Excessive Weight:

    Refrain from using weights that compromise your form or force you to use momentum. Overloading the machine can lead to improper muscle engagement and increase the risk of injury.

  2. Steer Clear of Rounded Shoulders:

    Do not allow your shoulders to round forward during the Cable Crossover. Maintain a stable shoulder position, preventing unnecessary strain and directing the focus onto the chest muscles.

  3. No Jerky Movements:

    Avoid jerky or rapid movements during the exercise. Performing the crossover with controlled, deliberate motions ensures proper muscle activation and reduces the likelihood of joint stress.

  4. Don't Neglect Full Range of Motion:

    Do not neglect the full range of motion; ensure your arms extend fully during the movement. Incomplete crossovers may limit muscle engagement and hinder overall chest development.

  5. Avoid Locked Elbows:

    Refrain from fully locking out your elbows at the end of the movement. Maintaining a slight bend ensures continuous tension on the chest muscles and prevents unnecessary stress on the joint.

  6. Do Not Allow Grip Negligence:

    Avoid neglecting your grip on the handles. A secure grip not only ensures safety but also helps in directing the force accurately to the chest muscles, optimizing the effectiveness of the exercise.

  7. Steer Clear of Elevated Hips:

    Do not allow your hips to rise during the Cable Crossover. Keeping a stable and grounded stance ensures that the energy is directed towards the chest and shoulders, promoting proper muscle isolation.

  8. Avoid Arching Your Back:

    Refrain from arching your back excessively. Maintain a neutral spine position to prevent strain on the lower back and ensure that the energy is channeled into the chest muscles rather than the supporting muscles.


Variations of fitness exercises refer to different ways of performing a specific exercise or movement to target various muscle groups, intensities, or goals. These variations aim to challenge the body differently, prevent plateaus, and cater to individuals with varying fitness levels.








Alternative exercises in fitness refer to different movements or activities that target similar muscle groups or serve the same training purpose as the primary exercise. These alternative exercises can be used as substitutes when the original exercise is unavailable or challenging to perform due to various reasons such as equipment limitations, injuries, or personal preferences.


Cable Machine