The cable rope overhead triceps extension requires a cable station to be performed. This more advanced exercise works not only your triceps, but also your torso, legs, and shoulders in fixing your body in position. Using the cable allows your triceps to be exercised under tension throughout the entire range of motion (ROM). This exercise is great at causing an intense load on your triceps so long as you stabilize well and only move from the elbow over.

Other names for this great triceps exercise:

  • standing triceps extension at a high pulley;
  • high-pulley overhead triceps extension;
  • overhead rope extension;

How to Perform Cable Rope Overhead Triceps Extension?

STARTING POSITION (SETUP): Attach a rope to the high-cable pulley and select your desired weight on the stack. Grasp the rope just behind your head with a neutral grip (palms facing together) and stand with your back to the weight stack, feet about 18 inches apart with one in front of the other for balance. Maintain a slight bend in your waist, holding your torso angled forward and your knees slightly bent. The best option is to bent at your hips until your torso is nearly parallel to the floor.

Cable Rope Overhead Triceps Extension

EXERCISE EXECUTION (MOVEMENT): Move only from the elbows as you press your arms to full extension, ending where your hands are about on the same plane as your ears. Keep your torso and hips in the same position throughout. Return slowly and under control to the start position, with your hands close to the sides of your head and your body well braced.

Overhead Rope Extension Key Points (Helpful Hints)

Correct technique has to be maintained while performing this triceps exercise for it to be effective. Doing cable rope overhead triceps extension incorrectly may lead to injury or lack of achievement of your bodybuilding goal. It is therefore crucial that one performs this exercise using the proper form in order to achieve the best from this great exercise.

  • Bend at waist roughly 45 degrees and place one leg in front of the other for balance.
  • Grip the rope so that your elbows point forwards and your arms are tight to the sides of your head.
  • Your hands (elbows) are always close to the sides of your head.
  • Don’t let your elbows flare out to the sides – keep your elbows in as much as possible.
  • Without moving your upper arms, push your forearms forward until your elbows are locked (keep your elbows and upper arms stationary).
  • Keep your torso and hips in the same position throughout the entire range of motion.

Muscles Involved in Cable Rope Overhead Triceps Extension

All heads of the triceps with a lot of stabilization required in the posterior deltoids, rhomboids, and traps.

  • Main muscles: triceps
  • Secondary muscles: anconeus, deltoid, rhomboids
  • Antagonists: biceps, brachialis, brachioradialis, traps

Exercise Variations

  • Straight bar overhead cable extension – use a completely straight bar or EZ-bar attachment in place of a rope. You can also use a V- bar (triangle shape bar) attachment.

Replacement Exercises

There are a range of exercises targeting the triceps. In this category, we have included only the best. In choosing these exercises, efficiency and effectiveness were the determinants. Basically, that means the workouts (exercises) below involve all three major muscles of the triceps at once and still manages to give you great results.

  • Cable triceps pushdown
  • E-Z bar lying triceps extension
  • Cable triceps kickback
  • Seated dumbbell triceps extension
  • …look our exercise database to find more replacement exercises…

Final Note

High pulley overhead triceps extension is unique in the category of triceps exercises in that it provides a good stretch. If you feel any pain in your elbows as you extend your forearms, do not completely lock your arms because full extension may be damaging for some men. Instead, use continuous tension by stopping short of complete extension.