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Exercise of the Week: Step-up Rotational Cable Lift

by Eric Cressey

Today’s guest post comes from Cressey Sports Performance – Florida Director of Performance, Tim Geromini.

Cable chops and lifts have been an integral part of strength and conditioning programs for many years, and will continue to be for good reason. They establish proper kneeling and split stance hip positions, create anti-rotation and anti-extension core control, train thoracic mobility, and teach us how to absorb force in multiple planes. To that end, seeking variations where we can challenge clients in new ways led us to the step-up rotational cable lift.

Here is how to make sure you’re doing this properly and seeing the benefits:

1. The box should align your hip to about 90 degrees of flexion; more is not always better in this instance. At this depth you should still be able to create force pushing down through the box and feel your hip extensors engage.

2. Make sure you are in a neutral spine position. In too much hip flexion, it’s very easy to either lean back into lumbar extension or round forward into lumbar flexion. Neither of these positions allows you to create stability in your lower half.

3. The inside foot should be pointing straight ahead and that hip should be extended.

4. The foot on the box should not remain “rooted” the entire set; imagine trying to pick up a basketball with that foot. Focus on keeping your knee from caving in or bowing out. If I’m looking straight at you, there should be a straight line from your toes, knee, hip, and shoulder.

5. Both hip flexors should be pointing straight ahead avoiding any lateral flexion or hips bailing out to the side. Keep your arms in tight on the initial pull and your rotational component will come from your thoracic spine, not lumbar spine.

We typically program these for 8 reps per side towards the end-portion of a training session.

About the Author

Tim Geromini is the Director of Performance at Cressey Sports Performance – Florida. Prior to joining the CSP team; Tim spent time with the Lowell Spinners (Class A Affiliate of the Boston Red Sox), Nashua Silver Knights (Futures Collegiate Baseball League), Cotuit Kettleers of (Cape Cod Baseball League), and UMass-Lowell Sports Performance. You can contact him at [email protected] and on Twitter (@timgeromini24).

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Category Blog | Tags: Core Stability ExercisesTim Geromini