How to Do Triceps Pushdown-Complete Step by Step Instructions to get perfect triceps muscles

best exercises for triceps
Table of Contents

Outlines to be discussed

  • What is triceps pushdown
  • Triceps Rope Pushdown Benefits
  • How to Do the Triceps Press-Down or pushdowns
  • Common Mistakes during triceps pushdowns
  • Triceps Pushdowns Variations

What is Triceps Pushdown?

Whenever you enter into the gym you are determined to get to work on your triceps, for this, the triceps press-downs is likely to be one of the first exercises you plan on doing triceps pulldowns, triceps rope pushdown and cable triceps pushdowns are the other names used for this exercise. It is one of the best and basic isolation exercises for developing the size and providing strength to your triceps muscles.

This exercise usually uses the resistance or cable machine to work all three heads of triceps brachii by extension of the elbow joint. If you are not satisfied to do this exercise at the gym you can also perform triceps pushdown exercise at home, this can be achieved by replacing the resistance from the cable machine with help of long resistance and for effective triceps pushdown alternative that you can do.

Alternatives used for triceps pushdowns workouts are skull crushers, reverse grip bench press and overhead triceps extension. at the end of this article, you will be able to know about the triceps pushdowns, its benefits, step by step instructions, common mistakes you should avoid, modifications and variations in triceps pully pushdown.

Triceps Rope Pushdowns Benefits

Here, we will know about some of the benefits of regularly performing triceps pushdowns.

  • Improve your compound exercises

Your triceps are important and usually overlooked muscle groups. If you practice triceps pushdowns or pulldowns regularly then you can improve your performance while doing diamond push-ups, close-grip bench presses and many other compound exercises that use your triceps muscles.

  • Triceps pushdowns tone your arms

Having strong triceps will help you to lift more and more weight and build more strength to another muscle group present in your arm. Triceps pully pushdowns or rope triceps extension usually targets the lateral and medial head of the triceps muscle.

This exercise can increase the stabilization around your shoulder joint and tone the muscles on the back of your arms by proper form and regular practice. Either you lift heavy objects, throw a ball or simply want to boost the aesthetic appeal of your arms, this exercise helps you to build stronger arms to achieve your goals.

  • Isolation

As we all know that cable triceps pushdown or triceps pushdown is an isolation exercise. You can specifically target your triceps with help of this exercise if you have any strength or muscle size imbalances.

We can understand this through an example, if your chest is much stronger than your arms, you can compensate for this imbalance by performing triceps pushdown. In this way, a barbell bench press that targets the chest will significantly improve if you will strengthen your arms as they are involved in bench press motion.

  • Convenience

Some triceps workout needs expensive and heavy equipment which is only found in the gym but the traditional triceps pushdown use cable system, all you need in this exercise the resistance band. With the help of a bar or hook, you can bind the lightweight resistance band and increase the triceps strength.

Step-by-step Instruction of Triceps pushdowns

Triceps Pushdown
Triceps Pushdowns

Usually, people ask, how they can perform the triceps pushdown or pully pushdown. Here I will tell you how you can easily perform this exercise.


To perform this exercise, you will require a rope or cable that is attached to a pulley with the cable bar attachment.

Starting Position

  • First, you have to attach the cable bar attachment to the rope or cable machine
  • Then you have to select the weight that you are comfortable with lifting on the cable stack.
  • Now adjust the bar in such a way that it is set to hang the chest level from the top pully.
  • At the same time while facing the machine you should take hold of the bar with help of an overhand grip. Your palms should be facing the floor.
  • Have your feet hip-width apart, and your knees should be in a slightly bent position.
  • Your elbows should be resting at a 90-degree angle.


  • Tuck your elbows in at your sides, and make sure that your back is straight in position and your core is engaged.
  • Before starting the exercise, Inhale.
  • Exhale and push down, extend your arms out into the straight line.
  • Make sure your elbows do not fully lock up or make sure that your elbows should slightly bend.
  • Hold this position for at least 2 seconds and inhale before resuming the exercise.
  • At the same time while exhaling, return the handle or bar back to the starting position, keeping your elbows stable in their fixed position.

Common Mistakes during triceps pushdowns

As we know that triceps cable or rope pushdown is easy to execute, form is critically important to get right. An easy mistake such as flaring your elbows out using your back too much and not using Both sides equally slightly and leaning your back can negate the full benefits for your triceps. Here are some of the triceps pushdown teaching points that help to avoid the most common mistakes.

  • Elbows Flaring Out

Another mistake involving the elbows is the infamous elbow flare out. So, you should not allow your elbows to flare outward on the downward push. If you will not do this will negate the work on your triceps and places unwanted stress on your shoulders.

  • Curling the Wrists

A lot of people curl their wrists at the bottom of each pushdown hoping to do the complete repetition. But in reality, if you curl your wrist it will remove the tension from your triceps and puts unwanted stress upon your wrist. So, try to make sure that your wrist remains neutral throughout each rep.

  • Using Your Back Too Much

To force the weight down, you should not have to bend over at the back and shoulders. This is done to make sure that your triceps are getting fully worked. This will also help to lean forward slightly and permits your knees to bend slightly as you push down. This position will show that all the muscle components are equally engaged.

  • Excessive Elbow Movement

Usually, a lot of people allow their elbows to sway back and forward during the movement. You can Technically you can lift more weight by using this momentum, actually, you are using your lats to finish the exercise. If you are focused to prioritize your triceps then keep your elbows tucked into your body and you will feel a far superior triceps contraction.

Triceps Pushdowns Variations

If you want to change your triceps pushdown exercise routine, consider trying one of these variations.

Reverse-grip triceps pushdown

Reverse grip triceps pushdown variation uses an underhand grip means palms facing toward your body to put even more emphasis on the medial head of the triceps. With this variation, you can’t lift much weight but it’s a good way to help those who are struggling with their elbow flaring to keep their elbows tight and mindfully engage the triceps muscle.

Resistance band pushdown

If your gym doesn’t have a pushdown machine, or you are not part of the gym, try using a resistance band to do the workout at home or while traveling. Be sure you’ve attached one end of the resistance band safely to a secured bolt or hook above you.

Alternating Triceps Pushdown

This alternating triceps pushdown is a great way for athletes to eliminate muscle imbalances between a stronger and weaker arm. Triceps pushdown can easily be performed with the help of just one arm. Lower the weight and stick to the same form as the two-arm triceps pushdown.

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