If you use a cable machine to train the muscles at the back of your upper arm, the triceps, use a rope instead of a bar for the press down. Rope pushdowns are more effective, revealed a study published by the American Council on Exercise. Proper form will help you target the triceps and get the most out of the exercise.
Attach the rope accessory to a pulley machine. Raise the pulley to the highest level.
Face the machine and grasp the ends of the rope attachment in each hand, just above the balled end. Position your body close to the rope and lean forward very slightly. Allow your palms to face one another and position your elbows and upper arms against the sides of your body, perpendicular to the floor.
Exhale and draw the rope down so that each side comes to the sides of your thighs. Fix your upper arms against your trunk as you do the motion to stimulate the triceps - only the forearms move.
Pause momentarily at the bottom of the movement. Inhale and return to the rope back to the starting position to complete one repetition.
Repeat eight to 12 repetitions of the exercise to build general strength. Use a resistance that makes the exercise feel difficult by the last two or three repetitions. Do just one set if you are new to strength training. Add another set or two as you become more proficient, allowing for 60 seconds of rest between sets.
- Use the rope press down as part of a total triceps training plan. Other effective exercises for the triceps include the diamond pushup and triceps dips.