Cable Deadlifts

Cable Deadlift Exercise

Cable Deadlifts target the hamstring and gluteus muscles with secondary emphasis on the lower back, rear shoulders, upper back, traps and forearms.

Using cables instead of free weights maintains tension throughout the movement.

Cable Deadlifts are a great addition to your workout program if you want to build greater flexibility and range of motion in your hamstrings without much involvement from the lower back.

This exercise is valuable if you have pain and discomfort in your lower back area. Flexible hamstrings can help overcome leg imbalances in sports and minimise the risk of injuries.

Cable Deadlifts are useful for running, tennis, soccer, martial arts, football and basketball.

Cable Deadlift

Cable Deadlifts How To

  • Position the bar at a cable machine at the lowest setting.
  • Stand a few feet from the cable machine to initiate tension. Take a shoulder wide stance with your heels under your lower back.
  • Tighten your core muscles, push out your chest and maintain a slight arch in your lower back.
  • Inhale then slowly bring the bar down by bending at the hip and going for a full stretch. Stick your glutes out and keep a slight bend on your knees throughout the movement.
  • Once you feel a slight stretch on your hamstrings, slowly apply force and pull the bar upward. As you approach top position, engage your hips by pushing them into the movement. This will make you hyperextend the back a bit. Maintain the position for a count of “one” for an isometric hold.
  • Repeat the movements until you have completed the targeted number of reps.

Form and Technique

Unlike the conventional Deadlift which targets the back, Cable Deadlift primarily works the hamstrings and glutes by reducing the involvement of the lower back.

It does this because the cable machine transforms the movement more into a forward to backward pulling movement than a direct pull from the floor.

Cable deadlifts for glutes is all about maintaining constant tension on the hamstrings. You should focus on pulling with your hamstrings; the arms are only levers and should remain straight, the upper back, traps are there for stability.

Do not jerk or use momentum to initiate the movement. Heavy weights are not advisable for Cable Deadlifts.

Maintain a slight bend in your legs throughout the movement and do not lock them out to prevent shearing forces from affecting your knees.

What about cable deadlift vs barbell deadlift? Either one will target the same muscles, but cable deadlifts will provide greater stability during the exercise due to the somewhat fixed range of movement (because of the cable).

A barbell deadlift will be slightly more challenging, but it’s a good idea to do both to mix up your workouts to prevent muscles from expecting the same exercise, range of movement, etc.

Routine for Strength: 3 sets x 12-15 reps

Routine for Muscle Gains: 4-5 sets x 6-8 reps

For cable deadlift alternatives, here are two…

Barbell Deadlift | Smith Machine Deadlift

Cable Deadlift FAQs

Do deadlifts make you bigger?

Deadlifts can make you bigger if you perform the exercise with correct form and continually increase the weight over time.

Cable deadlifts help build bigger glutes, hamstrings and strengthen the core as well as lower back muscles.

Which muscles to deadlifts use?

Cable deadlift muscles worked include hamstrings, glutes, abs and lower back primarily.

But as a compound exercise, several other muscles and muscles groups are involved in the exercise such as upper back and arms.

How dangerous is Deadlifting?

Deadlifting is only dangerous if you don’t use correct form or lift a weight that is beyond your current ability.

Use correct cable deadlift form and increase the weight gradually over several months as your strength increases.

What is a good amount to deadlift?

It depends how strong you are currently, but generally speaking, it’s best to lift approximately 80% of your maximum capability to ensure your deadlift form is correct, in order to avoid injury.

As a beginner, start by just lifting the barbell itself until your deadlift technique is correct before adding weight plates.

For the average exerciser with several months of training behind them, 40kgs – 80kgs (88lbs – 176lbs) is a reasonable weight range to be lifting consistently.

How To Do Cable Deadlift

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