top of page

Wacky Cable Exercises for Effective Bodybuilding | Home Gym Cable System

There are some really wacky exercises out there, and the cable machine is no exception. Today, I'm going to share some cable exercises that if you do them in a commercial gym, you will get some strange looks. But they're also really effective at what they do. Let's get into it.

1. Cable Scorpions

Set your cable machine to the low setting. Also, attach your ankle strap. Yes, this is one of those rare exercises we get to use this thing.

  1. Stand at a 90 degree angle, facing away from the cable, with the leg with the ankle strap on closest to the cable.

  2. Lie face-down on the ground. Throughout this exercise, try and keep your torso firmly on the ground.

  3. Lift the leg and place it on the opposite side and back down. You should look a bit like a scorpion when you're doing this.

This exercise looks ridiculous, but it is great for training the outer thigh, the glutes, both the minimus and maximus, and also it is great for hip mobility. Once you finish on one side, make sure you do the other side.

2. Cable Face Pulls with External Rotation

This exercise, you're going to need to set the cable machine to the high setting and attach the rope attachment. Now, this is very similar to a Cable Face Pull, but if you do it in a commercial gym, most people will think you don't know how to do a Face Pull because it's is a little bit different. With a normal Face Pull, you just pull it straight back, elbows kind of go down a little bit and pull the rope a little bit past your head. With the external rotation variation, you're going to pull back and rotate the elbows out and to the side. The range of motion decreases a little bit, but this is a fantastic exercise.

This exercise works all the shoulder muscles, and I mean all the muscles. And on top of that as well, it's great for improving shoulder stability, shoulder mobility, and also for improving just overall posture.

3. Cable Iso Dead Bugs.

This exercise, you’ll need the high setting on your cable machine, and the bar attached. This is a very wacky exercise in both name and execution.

  1. Facing away from the cable machine, go down on the floor.

  2. Raise the weights and come a little bit away from the cable machine.

  3. Hold this position whilst doing Dead Bugs.

The “iso” in the name of the exercise comes from “isometric”, which means contracting the muscles without actually moving the limb, and that's what we're doing here. This exercise looks absolutely ridiculous, but it's really good for training the core, plus also focusing on balancing with the shoulder muscles, and also the core and your hips.

4. Pallof Press

  1. Set your cable machine to the low setting and attach a handle. Just the one handle is all you need.

  2. Holding the handle, stand at a 90 degree angle from the pulley.

  3. Lift up the weight just a little bit. Using both hands, push the handle away from your chest, then let it back in.

This exercise trains the chest and shoulders, but it also, more importantly, trains the core to improve stability and strength, whilst also build up your resilience to rotational forces. This is very important in all the other exercises you do. Once you finish on one side, turn around, do the same thing on the other side.

5. Kneeling Cable Crunch with Added Rotation.

  1. Set up your cable machine on the high setting and attach the rope attachment.

  2. Facing away from the cable machine, go down on your knees.

  3. Raise the weight just a little bit and sit back on the heels of your feet.

  4. Hold the ropes to the side of your head.

  5. Bend over like you’re crunching, but instead twist to one side and try and touch your elbow to your knee, then go back up.

  6. Each rep, alternate sides.

This exercise will look like you don't know how to do cable crunches, but it's actually a really effective exercise. It targets the abs and the obliques, with more focus on the obliques than a normal cable crunch. The added rotation from twisting provides a different type of stimulus that your abs are not used to receiving, which is going to be even more effective for building muscle in

And there you have it. Five really wacky but really effective cable exercises. For more home gym bodybuilding tips from Tokyo Titan, the certified bodybuilding specialist trainer and nutiritonist, checck out my official website at


bottom of page