Twisting cable overhead press exercise
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Twisting cable overhead press

Exercise details

  • Target muscle: Anterior Deltoid
  • Synergists: Lateral Deltoid, Clavicular (Upper) Pectoralis Major, Supraspinatus, Triceps Brachii, Middle and Lower Trapezius, Serratus Anterior, Gluteus Maximus, Adductor Magnus, Quadriceps, Soleus, Obliques, Psoas major, Quadratus Lumborum, Iliocastalis Lumborum, Iliocastalis Thoracis, Tensor Fasciae Latae, Gluteus Medius
  • Dynamic stabilizers: Triceps Brachii (long head only), Hamstrings, Gastrocnemius
  • Mechanics: Compound
  • Force: Push

Starting position

  1. Attach a stirrup (handle) to a low or waist-high pulley.
  2. Grasp the stirrup with one hand.
  3. Spread your legs and squat a little, keeping your torso upright.
  4. Position the stirrup to the side of your body, with your elbow flexed and tucked in to your side.


  1. Exhale as you straighten your legs, twist your body, and press the stirrup diagonally upward and away from the pulley.
  2. Hold for a count of two.
  3. Inhale as you reverse the motion and return your body and the stirrup to the starting position.
  4. Repeat for more repetitions.
  5. Repeat the exercise with your opposite arm.

Comments and tips

  • You can place your free hand on your hip.
  • You can squat as deep as you want to.
  • Do not twist beyond feeling a mild stretch in your side.
  • The twisting cable overhead press is brilliant for developing unilateral upper-body strength, as well as improving your balance and the strength and stability of your core.
  • As with all unilateral exercises, start with your weaker side, and do not perform more repetitions with your stronger side. This will promote equal size and strength on both sides of your body. Or, you can do more reps with your weaker side.
  • For other types of overhead press exercises, try the Smith machine seated overhead press, the standing wide-grip barbell overhead press, and the seated dumbbell overhead press.

Twisting cable overhead press video


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