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Best Substitutes for the Cable Machine [12 Most Popular Exercises]

I love the cable machine too! Here’s what I
do when I don’t have access to one.

I’ll show you alternative options to replace the 12 most popular Cable Machine Exercises

Get ready, this is a pretty long list!

I wrote down a list of my favorite exercises to do with a cable machine, and I had to stop myself at 12 so this video wouldn’t be too long 😅.

There are so many things you can use a Cable Machine for, but there are also so many ways you can achieve a similar result without it.

Let’s go through this list of 12 and I’ll show you my favorite subs for each one.

First I’ll show you subs with resistance bands, dumbbells and a pull up bar, and then in case you don’t have any of those items I’ll also show a bodyweight only option.

Be sure to watch the video to hear and see exactly how to do each one of these.

  1. Alternatives for Cable Pull Downs:

Band Option = Band Pull Downs using a mini Loop Resistance Band or a Long Band attached to your pull up bar.

Bodyweight Option = Superman W Pull

2. Alternatives for Cable Face Pull

Band Option = Band Face Pull

Bodyweight Option = Imaginary Face Pull, on a bench in prone position if you have a bench

3. Alternatives for Cable Tricep Push Downs

Band Option = Band Push downs, attached to a Pull Up bar

OR Mini Band Push Downs

Bodyweight Option = Tricep Dips

OR Tricep Push Up

4. Alternatives for Cable Rear Fly

Band Option = Band Fly

Bodyweight Options = Bent Over Lateral Raise

OR Prone T-Pulses

5. Alternatives for Cable Lateral Raise

Band Option = Band Lateral Raise

Dumbbell Option = Dumbbell Lateral Raise

Bodyweight Option = Pike Shoulder Push Ups

6. Alternatives for Cable Pull Through for Glutes

Band Option = Band Pull Through

Bodyweight Option = Hip Hinge Thrust

7. Alternatives for Cable Glute Kickbacks

Band Option = Band Kickbacks

8. Alternatives for Kneeling Weighted Ab Crunch

Band Options = Kneeling Band Crunch

OR Band Weighted Crunch

Bodyweight option = Sit Up

9. Alternatives for Cable Chest Fly

Band Option = Single Arm Cable Chest Fly

Bodyweight Option = Towel Slide Fly Push Up

10. Alternatives for Cable Core Rotation

Band Option = Band Core Rotation

Bodyweight Option = Windshield Wiper Abs

11. Alternatives for Cable Overhead Tricep Extension

Band Option = Band Tricep Extensions

Bodyweight Option = Plank Tricep Extensions

12. Alternatives for Cable Bicep Curl

Band Option = Band Curls (you can add both Bands and Db’s to increase resistance)

Dumbbell Option = Db Curls

Bodyweight Option = Chin Ups

That concludes the list of my 12 favorites but it certainly doesn’t include every cable exercise that exists. If you have any others that you need a sub for let me know.

The Cable Machine is excellent and if you train at a gym you should definitely use it.

But it’s also good for you to know that there ARE alternatives that work the same muscles and can deliver excellent results.

Even better news: The alternatives are also Home-Friendly. You can train at home even if you own zero equipment.

If you ever need ideas or instruction on how to replace any workout equipment please let me know.

We have a very supportive community of Live Leaners all over the world that are getting incredible results using what they have.

There are options for everyone no matter what limitations you face.

Circumstances can change, but your commitment to Living Lean is forever.

I follow our Team Live Lean training plans, especially the Home Versions.

Follow the same workouts I’m following:




Start by taking our FREE Live Lean Body Quiz to get access to the best program specific to your goals, current fitness level, and access to equipment.

Take the Free Live Lean Body Quiz


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Question For You:

  • Have you ever done a sprint workout like this at home?

Be sure to share your answers in the comment section below.

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One response to “Best Substitutes for the Cable Machine [12 Most Popular Exercises]

  1. Would you rather do the alternative workouts or use a cable machine if you had access to one? This is a fantastic educational post that is both unique and useful to others.

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