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Cable Leaning Side Raise 101 Video Tutorial

Gym Main Variation Strength


Cable Leaning Side Raise
Cable Leaning Side Raise

Exercise Synopsis

Target Muscle Group


Secondary Targets



Force Type

Pull (Bilateral)

Required Equipment

Cable Machine

Fitness Level









The Cable Leaning Side Raise is a shoulder-focused exercise designed to enhance lateral deltoid development, with secondary engagement of the triceps. This exercise is performed using a cable machine, where the individual leans away from the machine, creating tension in the cable. With a neutral grip on the cable handle, the arm is raised laterally in a controlled manner, emphasizing the lateral deltoids. The leaning position allows for increased resistance throughout the range of motion, providing a unique angle to target the shoulders. This exercise is effective in isolating the lateral deltoids, contributing to shoulder strength and definition.

How to Perform

  1. Begin the leaning cable lateral raise, a variation of the side lateral raise, by utilizing a cable machine. This exercise focuses on isolating the lateral deltoid, with secondary engagement of the triceps and traps, providing an expanded range of motion for the shoulders.

  2. To execute this movement, stand away from the cable machine with a firm grip on the handle at arm's length and shoulder height. The arm holding the cable should be straight, and the palm should face towards you.

  3. Secure your position by placing your feet at the base of the cable machine and leaning outward, ensuring the arm holding the cable hangs straight down. Maintain a slight bend in the elbow to prepare for the lift.

  4. Emphasize proper form and controlled repetitions over the amount of weight used in this isolation exercise. It is crucial to prioritize form to prevent injuries and optimize the effectiveness of the leaning cable lateral raise.

  5. Inhale and, as you exhale, raise the arm holding the cable upwards and outwards, avoiding overstraining. The goal is to reach shoulder height or slightly above. Hold this position for two seconds before inhaling and lowering the arm back to the starting position.


  1. Maintain a precise range of motion by ensuring that the arm holding the cable reaches a 90-degree angle parallel to the floor during the leaning cable lateral raise. This maximizes the contraction of the isolated muscles, promoting optimal results.

  2. Prioritize form over excessive weight, selecting a weight that is manageable as resistance. This approach enhances focus on form, reduces the risk of injuries, and allows for more controlled repetitions without premature muscle fatigue.

  3. Avoid swinging the cable away from the body, as this compromises proper form and fails to effectively engage the targeted muscles. A controlled movement without swinging ensures the shoulders are the primary focus, preventing activation of unintended muscle groups.

  4. Maintain a braced and neutral position to preserve form and optimize muscle engagement. Avoid bending at the hips or knees, emphasizing stability for effective leaning cable lateral raises.

  5. Emphasize arm extension rather than simply raising the cable, extending it away from the body to isolate all shoulder muscles, including the traps. This nuanced movement distinguishes the exercise and enhances its effectiveness.

  6. Engage the core throughout the exercise, supporting stability and preventing unnecessary strain on the lower back.

  7. Resist the urge to max out too early, and prioritize rest between sets. Adequate rest intervals contribute to maintaining proper form, preventing muscle strain or injury during the leaning cable lateral raise.

  8. Warm up effectively before starting this challenging exercise, incorporating light-weight and free-weight shoulder workouts to prepare the muscles.

  9. If preexisting muscle injuries are a concern, opt for lighter weights and exercise caution when performing the leaning cable lateral raise to avoid exacerbating any existing issues.

How Not to Perform

  1. Avoid Using Excessive Weight: Refrain from selecting a weight that is too heavy, as this can lead to compromised form and unnecessary strain on the shoulder muscles. Opt for a manageable resistance to maintain control throughout the exercise.

  2. Steer Clear of Swinging Motions: Resist the temptation to swing the cable excessively during the leaning side raise. Swinging diminishes the effectiveness of the exercise by engaging other muscle groups and reduces the targeted impact on the shoulders. Ensure a controlled and deliberate movement.

  3. Prevent Overarching the Back: Avoid hyperextending or overarching your back during the exercise. Maintain a neutral spine position to protect the lower back and ensure that the shoulders bear the brunt of the work. Overarching can lead to discomfort and may compromise the effectiveness of the movement.

  4. Don’t Neglect Core Engagement: Do not neglect engaging your core muscles throughout the exercise. A stable core supports proper form and prevents unnecessary strain on the spine. Keep the core tight to enhance overall stability during the leaning side raise.

  5. Avoid Rapid or Jerky Movements: Steer clear of quick, jerky movements, as this can increase the risk of injury and reduce the effectiveness of the exercise. Aim for slow, controlled motions to maximize muscle engagement and minimize strain on the joints.

  6. Beware of Poor Cable Alignment: Ensure that the cable alignment matches the natural movement of your shoulder joint. Misalignment may lead to added stress on the shoulder, potentially causing discomfort or injury. Adjust the cable to align with your shoulder's natural range of motion.

  7. Prevent Full Extension at the Top: Avoid fully extending the arm at the top of the movement. While a complete range of motion is crucial, overextending the arm can place excessive stress on the shoulder joint. Instead, focus on controlled lifts within a safe and comfortable range.

  8. Do Not Ignore Warm-Up: Skipping a proper warm-up can increase the risk of injury. Always start with light shoulder warm-up exercises to prepare the muscles and joints for the leaning side raise. A well-prepared shoulder is less prone to strain.

  9. Avoid Holding Your Breath: Refrain from holding your breath during the exercise. Maintain a steady breathing pattern to ensure a consistent flow of oxygen to the muscles. Controlled breathing contributes to overall exercise performance and reduces the risk of dizziness or discomfort.


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.


Cable Machine






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






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