HomeExercise LibraryHow To: Cable Front Raise

How To: Cable Front Raise

Cable Front Raise

The cable front raise and all of its variations are fantastic for building up the anterior (front) of the deltoids.

If you want those round, cannonball style shoulders this is one exercise you cannot afford to neglect!

I recommend hitting the front raise after performing several sets of overhead press and side lateral raises during your shoulder workout.

Movement: Isolation

Targets: Shoulders

Required: Cable Machine + Straight Bar Attachment

Optional: N/A

Cable Front Raise Form:

Grasping a straight bar on your cable machine and stand straight with palms facing towards your body with a slight bend in your knees.

Maintaining your straight position proceed to raise the straight bar in front of you with a slight bend in your elbows.

Raise the straight bar until it's at head height before holding for one second at the top of the repetition.

In a slow and controlled manner lower the straight bar back down in front of your waist and proceed for the desired number of repetitions.

Cable Front Raise Variations

Dumbbell Front Raise

Grasp a dumbbell in each and, proceed to raise each dumbbell, one at a time to head level, rotation from a neutral grip to a palms facing down angle as you reach the top of each repetition.

Barbell Front Raise

Grasp a barbell infront of you utilizing a shoulder width grip with both hands, proceed to raise the barbell infront of your physique with straight arms to head height before lowering in a controlled manner.

See also
How To: Seated Dumbbell Front Raise

Seated Front Raise

The seated front raise with dumbbells is a great way of eliminating any potential swinging or use of momentum often apparent when performing the standing dumbbell or barbell front raise.

Common Cable Front Raise Mistakes

Not Hitting All Parts Of The Deltoid

Your shoulder is not just made up of one muscle, the shoulder is comprised of 3 ‘heads’, these are known as:

  • The anterior deltoid (the front of your shoulder)
  • The medial deltoid (the side of your shoulder)
  • The posterior deltoid (the rear of your shoulder)

If you are not training all 3 heads you will not get round, full shoulders.

Shoulder training is based around 2 main movements, presses and raises, the traditional dumbbell and barbell presses are a great starting exercise for your shoulder routine as they are a compound exercise (and therefore hit all heads of the deltoid) we can then hone in on the anterior, medial and posterior heads individually through different variations of raises.

Bouncing The Weight

Your stance should be shoulder width and you should maintain a slight bend in your knee (I have seen quite a few people performing standing shoulder exercises with locked out knees, however for stability and reduced risk of injury a slightly bent knee is superior).

See also
How To: Pull-Ups

At the bottom of the repetition you pause for a split second before proceeding with the following rep – no bouncing.

Using A Partial Range Of Motion

Partial reps can be used to push yourself beyond your point of failure at the end of your set, however strict, full range of motion must be practiced first.

The barbell or dumbbells should be raised until they are at face level before being lowered down until your arms are fully extended in front of you.

Poor Scheduling Of Your Shoulder Workout

I highly recommend having at least 1 day between your chest and shoulder workouts.
The flat barbell bench press, incline bench press and dips place a large amount of tension on the front deltoids (even though the chest is the primary muscle targeted during this exercise).
If you’re going straight from a heavy chest workout on Monday into a shoulder workout on Tuesday you won’t be getting the best bang for your buck out of your workout – your shoulders will be recovering and from my experience you won’t be able to lift anywhere near as heavy as if they were fresh.

Ongoing, excessive amounts of stress placed on the shoulders can result in a shoulder impingement which’ll have you out of performing the vast majority of upper body exercises for weeks if not months, not good.

See also
How To: Flat Dumbbell Flies

If you’re strapped for time and can only train three times a week the push/pull/legs workout regime is an option which hits both chest and shoulders in the same (push) workout however if you’re able to train 5 days a week I recommend performing a split in the following order:


Alternatively, through a leg or rest day between your chest and shoulder workouts.

Similar & Substitute Exercises 

  • Barbell Front Raise
  • Dumbbell Side Lateral Raise
  • Dumbbell One Arm Side Lateral Raise

Any Questions Regarding The Cable Front Raise? Ask Below!

Scott J.
Scott J.
I’m SJ. I’m a fitness enthusiast and published author. I transformed my body from a skinny fat 135lbs with 18% body fat to a solid 192lbs at 8% body fat. I became qualified in a field I was passionate about. I founded several online businesses that allow me to pursue ideas and projects in my life that I am passionate about without having to constantly worry about money. I published several eBooks explaining the training and dieting techniques I used to achieve the body I have today. I learnt a plethora of new information on dieting and fitness by reading and applying what I read, to find out what does work and what doesn’t work, because as I’m sure you’ve noticed the health and fitness industry is full of non-sense claims and BS. I found out what was true and what worked for me and applied that knowledge. And you bet I had fun during the whole process.

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