The cable lying triceps extension should be a staple in anyone’s triceps training regime if possible. The advantage of this exercise is the pronounced stretch on the triceps during the eccentric portion which is essential for muscle growth.
Presses, dips, and pushdowns are also crucial triceps movements but you can’t leave out extensions if you desire to achieve maximum development. So today, we’re going to explain how to do this essential exercise with tips, variations, and a plan of action.
Here’s a guide to the cable lying triceps extension…
In This Exercise:
- Target Muscle Group: Triceps
- Type: Hypertrophy
- Mechanics: Isolation
- Equipment: Cable machine
- Difficulty: Beginner
This one’s pretty simple because since the cable lying triceps extension is an isolation exercise, it only works the triceps.
Triceps brachii or triceps for short is a three-headed (long head, a lateral head, and a medial head) muscle located on the back and outer portion of the upper arm. All three heads have a different origin but join distally. Its primary function is to extend the forearm at the elbow joint. Although, it can also stabilize the elbow joint when doing fine movements such as writing.
How To Do The Cable Lying Triceps Extension
The cable lying triceps extension requires a little setup but it’s definitely worth it. You’ll need access to a bench so that you can set it up next to the cable machine. But if you cannot bring a bench over to the machine then lying on the floor is acceptable as long as you can get a decent stretch and extension during the exercise.
Here are step-by-step instructions for the cable lying triceps extension.
- Place the head of the bench close to the cable pulley.
- Attach a straight bar to the lowest notch on the cable system.
- Lie on the bench so that your head is close to the bar.
- Grab the bar with both hands positioned about shoulder-width apart.
- Keeping your elbows pointed toward the ceiling and close to your sides, extend your forearms by flexing your triceps. Your arms should be completely straight.
- Lower the bar to your forehead or behind your head until you feel a stretch in the triceps, and repeat.
Cable Lying Triceps Extension Tips
- Never lift more than you can handle with any triceps extension variation. This puts a lot of stress on the elbow joint and you’re less likely to feel the muscles working.
- Keep your upper arms stationary during each repetition. Only your forearms should be moving.
- Make sure that you can perform this exercise using a full range of motion that’ll allow you to get a good stretch in the triceps. You can move the bench further away from the pullet to achieve this, if necessary.
3 Lying triceps extension Variations
The cable lying triceps extension is fantastic but you don’t necessarily have to limit yourself as there are several other options that’ll work just as good.
Lying barbell triceps extension
The lying barbell triceps extension is quite possibly the most popular variation of this exercise. It’s more convenient than the cable setup and will challenge your balance and stability a bit better as well.
Overhead triceps extension
Whether you use a barbell, dumbbells, cables, or machines, the overhead triceps extension is also a very effective variation. Just be careful when holding the weights behind your head because you don’t want to bump yourself which could be painful.
Bodyweight triceps extension
You don’t need weights to do a triceps extension. Your bodyweight is plenty and there are a few ways to do this triceps extension variation. You could do it in a push-up position on your toes or knees, with your body inclined or declined, or however you feel that you can safely and comfortably perform this exercise.
How To Incorporate The Cable Lying Triceps Extension Into Your Training Routine
We obviously know that the cable lying triceps extension or any similar variation is performed along with other triceps exercises. But this exercise typically requires a different strategy than the rest because it does typically involve a larger range of motion that can place the elbows under a lot of stress.
Therefore, we recommending doing at least one other tricep exercise before the extension to sufficiently warm up the elbows. For example, do a set or two of light dips or pushdowns before doing the lying extension or any extension. Some people may be fine warming up using the extension but just keep the weights light, if you must.
Another great way to add the lying extension is to do it after chest or shoulder training since these are pushing movements that’ll warm up the elbows as well.
We recommend using moderate weights for this exercise but avoid going too light as you won’t challenge the muscles adequately to stimulate progress growth and make progress.
Mix up your sets and reps according to your experience and goals.
- 3-4 sets x 8-20 reps
The cable lying triceps extension is one of the best exercises that you can do for building arm mass and strength. There are a few different variations of this movement but if you prefer one then utilize it every time that you train triceps and watch them grow!
We hope this exercise was helpful and we’re confident you’re now better equipped to maximize your results.