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The best cable shoulder exercises for big and strong shoulders

Add my top-rated cable shoulder exercises to your upper-body workout to create serious shoulder size, width and definition. This will make your waist look lean and narrow and help you transform your physique into the lean and athletic body you want, says New Body Plan’s Joe Warner

Cable face-pull

This is the single-best cable shoulder exercise for training your upper back and rear shoulders with control and perfect form, and it’s also fantastic for building up shoulder joint strength and health by working your stabilising rotator cuff muscles.

Cable lat raise

The constant tension in the cable during the lifting and lowering phase of each rep keeps the muscles on the sides of your shoulders working for the entire set to help sculpt a wider, stronger and more athletic upper body, whereas using a too-heavy dumbbell means you can’t control the lowering phase and miss out on half the gains.

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Cable front raise

As with the cable lat raise, the contest tension during each stage of every rep works the front of your shoulders harder and smarter to get bigger and better muscle-growth results.

Cable external rotation

It helps strengthen the delicate but hugely influential internal muscles of the shoulder joint, and the stronger these stabilisers are, the better you’ll be able to perform every single upper-body exercise. You only need a very light weight, and to move slowly under full control, to work the muscles properly.

Cable internal rotation

This cables shoulder exercise works your small shoulder rotator cuff muscles in the opposite direction to the external rotation, so doing both moves will work these crucial shoulder joint muscles fully to build stronger, more flexible and more robust joints so you can lift heavier and with better form during all pushing, pulling and rotational exercises.

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