Best Home Pulley Systems for Performing Face Pulls, Lat Pulls and More

Did you know the American Council on Exercise recommends the use of cable pulley systems to increase the range of motion of your workouts and break your fitness plateau? 

Doing the same types of exercises every day can make your body get used to it. Once it gets adjusted to them, you won’t be able to achieve as much results as you did when you started them. This is why it is important to keep trying different types of exercises frequently. 

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Cable exercises will be a good change for your body, as they provide you a greater range of motion than dumbbells and barbells. 

Free weights limit your range of motion, so you cannot engage all your muscle groups. But, cable pulley systems allow you to perform your exercises at different positions and from different angles. You can target those ‘often-neglected’ minor muscle groups that otherwise get ignored when using bench press and lat machines. 

They are generally safe for use, as there is no way you can drop the weight on yourself. Other upper body strength exercises such as bench press and shoulder press do have the risk of crashing the weight down on you. 

Being safe, they are suitable for beginners and intermediates. You can exercise safely without requiring professional help. Further, cable machines give you a smooth, non-jerky motion, which is specifically good if you are undergoing rehab. 

Cable pulley systems are pretty easy to set up. You can either add them to your power cage or your ceiling, door bar, pullup bar, etc. Since they are inexpensive and do not occupy much floor space, they are perfect for space crunched homes and garage gyms. Some cable exercise machines are meant specifically for the upper body whereas a few can be used for the lower body as well. 

Watch this video to check out some of the popular exercises that you can perform using cable pulley system

We hope the above video has motivated you to add a cable pulley system to your home gym collection. Let’s look at some of the best options we have selected for you: 

Top 10 Home Pulley Systems 

PELLOR Forearm Wrist Arm Strength Training Rope Cable Pulley System

This cable pulley system can be set up anywhere in your home. All you need is a hook or a bar to hang it, which includes your pull up bar, ceiling hook, door hook, and your squat rack or power cage. It is a no-fuss home gym equipment for beginners and intermediates. You can use it for upper body exercises only. 

Features:

  • The set contains a nylon rope, a pulley, a carabiner, a strap, and a barbell rack
  • Has a weight-bearing capacity of 40 lbs
  • The rope is made of braided nylon and has excellent durability. 
  • The strap has plugs at the end to prevent your hands from slipping.

What we like about it

  • Have kids at home? Don’t worry, this cable pulley system won’t disturb them. Many buyers have stated that the Pellor rope cable pulley system provides a smooth and silent operation
  • Since it doesn’t make noise, you can install it in your living room and watch TV without getting disturbed. 
  • All you need to set it up is a hook or a bar. No tools and no assembly required. Just connect the parts in the correct order and it’s ready to be used within minutes.

Things that can be improved

  • Some buyers have stated that the weight halter i.e. pin that holds the weights is thin. They doubt if it would be able to hold 40lbs. However, no buyer has mentioned durability issues. 
  • The cord for holding a bit long and there is no way you can adjust it. You may try to knot it down though. 

Our Rating: 3.5

Our Verdict: 

Given that it can hold just 40lbs, we found it to be a bit overpriced. Yet, it is a good choice for people who have kids, as it won’t disturb them. For more information, read our detailed review of PELLOR Forearm Wrist Arm Strength Training Rope Cable Pulley System. 

SYL Fitness LAT Cable Pulley System

If you need something more durable and heavy-duty than the Pellor cable pulley system, go for the SYL one. It is cheaper than Pellor and yet has a much higher weight-bearing capacity. PLEASE NOTE THAT IT DOESN’T COME WITH TRICEP ROPE. The good thing is that you can add any cable attachment to it including tricep rope, lat bar, single or double D handle, etc. 

Features:

  • The set includes a hanging strap, a pulley, a cable, a loading pin, and a few hooks
  • Suspended weight-bearing capacity is 340lbs, so even advanced trainers and bodybuilders can use it. 
  • The length of the cable can be adjusted. So, everyone in your family can exercise comfortably irrespective of their height. 
  • The cable is made of wire rope with protective nylon covering. 

What we like about it:

  • 340lbs weight capacity is quite impressive. Even athletes and people who are into competitive sports can use it. 
  • A few buyers have stated that SYL has a responsive customer support team. They not just respond promptly but also resolve your issues. 
  • The pulley provides a smooth and quiet operation, so no one would get disturbed. 
  • The pulley has a 360-degree swivel, so you can exercise from any angle you want. 

Things that could be improved: 

  • Some buyers have stated that the cable could have been made a little longer. 
  • A few buyers have stated that the protective coating of the cable started to chip after a few uses. Once the coating gets damaged, the risk of snapping is high. 
  • The loaded cable could swing, so be careful while using. 
  • It doesn’t come with any assembly instruction but putting it together just requires some common sense. However, the manufacturer could have included a pictograph for help. 

Our Rating: 4.7/5

Our Verdict: 

The SYL Fitness cable pulley system is an almost perfect piece of home gym equipment. Some durability issues are there but it is still a good bet for the price.  

Pellor Cable Pulley System with Pull Down Cable and Handle 

The only difference between this Pellor cable pulley system with handles and the one mentioned above is that it comes with a steel handle and a pair of flying handles. These two attachments help target many different muscle groups of your arms and shoulders. 

Features:

  • The set contains a pulley, a cable, a pair of flying handles, solid steel handle, a weight plate, and some carabiners. 
  • The weight plate has a loading capacity of up to 40lbs
  • The handle is made of solid steel and has a slip-resistant EVA foam covering.
  • You can attach it anywhere including your squat rack or your half rack. You can even attach it to your pull up bar, door bar, beam, ceiling hook, etc.  

What we like about it:

  • The handles are well-built and durable. Many buyers have confirmed that they are truly slip-resistant. 
  • Just like the above Pellor pulley system, this one too provides a quiet operation. 
  • The two different attachments help you target different muscle groups. 
  • Some buyers have stated that this home pulley system is pretty stable. It doesn’t sway. The SYL cable pulley system listed above has this problem. 

Things that could be improved: 

  • It is good for casual lifting but not suitable for heavy powerlifting as 40lbs is not enough for it. 
  • The pin that holds the weight doesn’t look very durable. It is thin and doesn’t fit the weight plates snuggly.

Our Rating: 4.7/5

Our Verdict: 

Like the above listed pellor home pulley system, this one too is pricey but the padded steel handle and pull down handles still make it worthy. If you want to buy it, make sure you compare the prices from Amazon as well as Pellor’s own website to get a good deal. 

Fitness DIY Pulley Cable Machine Attachment System by Lixada

If you are looking for an inexpensive yet functionally good home pulley system, this should be your best bet. It costs less than $40, which is much less than the above-mentioned ones. There are two varieties available. The cheaper model A has a standard pulley whereas the model B costs a bit and comes with a 360-degree rotation pulley that prevents the cable from twisting. 

Features: 

  • The set includes a tricep strap, a pulley, a loading pin, 2 meter long cable, a hanging strap, and three carabiners
  • As mentioned above, you can buy either a standard pulley or a 360-degree rotation pulley. The rotation pulley costs about $10 more dollars but it helps you exercise from different angles and prevent the rope from twisting. 
  • The tricep rope has stopped to prevent your hands from slipping. 
  • The manufacturer claims that it has a heavy load capacity but hasn’t mentioned any specific weight

What we like about it: 

  • The rotation pulley set by Lixada is ridiculously inexpensive. The SYL cable pulley system too has a rotation pulley and it costs almost double. 
  • You can set it up anywhere. Some buyers have used it along with their pullup or chin up bar whereas some have used door or ceiling hooks. 
  • Almost all buyers have confirmed that the pulley provides a smooth and quiet operation, making it suitable for homes with kids. 

Things that can be improved: 

  • The weight-bearing capacity is not mentioned in product description. It is a Chinese product and we couldn’t even find it on the manufacturer’s website. One buyer stated that it broke with just 25lbs loaded on the plate whereas some buyers have tried up to 50lbs. The manufacturer should list a specific weight capacity so users don’t overload it and risk themselves. 
  • Since the product is shipped from China, it takes weeks to get delivered

Our Rating: 4.5/5

Our verdict: 

Since the weight-limit is not mentioned, we can’t be sure of its long-term durability. Yet, we chose it to be a part of our list because beginners and people who are undergoing therapy can safely use it. It is inexpensive making it suitable for short-term use. 

ARCHON Fitness Single Pulley Cable Station

If you need something more durable, sturdy, and versatile, Archon single pulley cable station is a smart option to consider. You can use two single pulleys to create a double pulley setup for lat pulls. You can even use four of them to create a low pulley system. Watch this video to see how you can create the double pulley setup. 

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Features: 

  • The set includes a ready to use pulley with cable attached within it, a weight plate holder, and a heavy-duty strap with connected handles. 
  • You can choose from two different sets; one comes with 70’ cable and the other one comes with 55” cable. Both the sets are the same, except the cable length. 
  • It has a suspended weight-bearing capacity of 400lbs

What we like about it:

  • 400 lbs weight capacity is unbelievably good in this price range. Not many buyers have actually tried adding so much weight but some of them did try adding about 150lbs and the set has done fairly well. 
  • The cable is sheathed to enhance its durability. 
  • All the hardware such as the carabiners and the metal plate holder are made of good quality steel, unlike other competitive products that use thinner low-grade steel. So you can trust this home pulley system to hold heavy weights. 
  • The set comes fully assembled. The cable is already put into the pulley and the strap to hold the pulley is also added to it. All you need to do is to wrap it around the mounting point. 

Things that can be improved: 

  • The handles that come with this Archon fitness home cable pulley system are not that great. They are just straps, not even ropes. If you are using light weights, you may not mind it but for lifting heavy weights, you should buy additional well-padded handles. 
  • Some buyers have stated that the rope comes out of its groove when it is kept loosely. Putting it back isn’t that difficult but it does cause some inconvenience and irritation. 

Our Rating:4.8/5

Our Verdict: 

The quality of this cable pulley system for home is definitely better than the ones listed above and the price is genuine too. But, make sure you choose the right cable length and be ready to buy additional handles. You may also want to buy weight pins. The strap works but it doesn’t hold the plates snugly, so they aren’t held centered

Elevtab Fitness LAT and Lift Pulley System

No matter what the manufacturer claims, this is a cheaply made product meant for short-term use. However, if you are undergoing therapy or if you are not fond of lifting heavy weights, you can go for it, as it is quite inexpensive and comes with two different workout handles.

Features: 

  • This home pulley system set by Elevtab consists of a nylon rope, a pulley, a loading pin, some carabiners, a hanging strap, and two handles. One is a straight handle and the other one is a strap. 
  • The nylon cable measures 90”. 
  • The manufacturer states that it can bear up to 300lbs of weight (which we doubt). 

What we like about it:

  • Its price is the biggest factor why we have chosen this home pulley system for upper body workouts. You are getting the whole set with two different workout handles in less than $50. 
  • Most buyers have confirmed that the pulley is smooth and silent, which makes it suitable for home gyms. 
  • The two different handles help you perform different exercises

Things that can be improved: 

  • Although the manufacturer says it comes with a cable, it is actually a rope. Some buyers have even compared it with a clothesline rope or jump rope. 
  • Many buyers have stated that the loading pin is not 1” but ¾” in diameter. They even said that the carabiners are very much similar to mini keychain quality. 
  • As mentioned, the quality and sturdiness are not too good to bear the claimed 300lbs weight. 
  • Another thing that you must note is that the delivery time is a little longer, as it is shipped from China.

Our Rating: 4.5

Our Verdict: 

You must be wondering why we have selected such a low-quality product to be a part of our list. Well, because it is meant for beginners and casual lifters. For them, this Elevtab Fitness home cable pulley system can last for a good number of uses until they are ready to upgrade. 

Rogue Fitness Spud Inc Pulley Systems

If you are willing to spend generously to buy a home pulley system that can handle a good amount of weight and bear rough use, Rogue Fitness is one brand that you can never go wrong with. This pulley is designed for powerlifting and has a long heavy-duty weight holder pin that can easily hold more up to 10 45lbs plates! 

Features:

  • The set includes 75” cable, 18” loading strap pin, tricep strap, a pulley, and spring clips
  • The manufacturer states that it can be used to lift up to 550 lbs weight
  • It comes with a tricep strap and yet you can attach any type of handle you want including EZ bar, tricep bar, wide lat bar, tricep rope, etc. 
  • You can buy the tricep and lat pull home pulley system or you can buy a kit that includes both lat pulley system and the low pulley system. So, if you are looking for a cheaper alternative to the expensive cable crossover stations, we highly recommend this Rogue Fitness cable pulley system for home gyms. 

Please note that the low pulley cable system works only when you combine it with the tricep and lat system. It cannot work as a standalone piece. 

What we like about it:

  • Many buyers have confirmed that this home pulley system by Rogue Fitness is pretty durable and can hold a lot of weight. Maybe not 550lbs but still a good amount of weight that you won’t outgrow it soon. 
  • The strap is pretty good and comfortable to use. You may not have to buy any additional handle for enhancing your comfort. 

Things that can be improved: 

  • Some buyers have stated that the pulley makes squeaky noise occasionally
  • The cable is long and there is no way you can adjust its length. One buyer, however, has suggested that you can buy a 12 inch pin from Spud website. The original weight holder pin is 18”.   
  • The weights swing when you use it for faster reps. So, be careful. 

Our Rating: 4.7/5

Our Verdict: 

Squeakiness is something that we wouldn’t in our home gym equipment. They can disturb other members of the family. But, if you workout at a dedicated area such as in your garage, this cable pulley system is actually a very reliable product for heavy weight training

Home Pulley System by Bells of Steel 

Bells of Steel is a renowned manufacturer of high-quality, light-commercial and commercial-grade equipment. This cable pulley attachment for home gym is no exception. It is meant for powerlifting and can be easily attached to power cages or pull up bars. However, if you are going to lift heavy weight, please use a power rack or cage, as pull up bars aren’t that reliable. 

Features:

  • The set includes a cable pulley, a weight plate holding strap, a tricep strap, few carabiners, some tools that you may need for putting it together. 
  • You can use two pulleys to create a low pulley or a seated row
  • The manufacturer claims that it can be used for lifting up to 440lbs of weight. This sounds crazily high provided that this cable pulley system costs around $50. However, after thoroughly reviewing the buyers’ feedback, we too agree that it can bear a significant amount of weight. Watch this video to see the weight test of this pulley attachment. 

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What we like about it:

  • Did you know Bells of Steel home pulley system is one of the cheapest products. It is currently available at just $50 and, when you order it through their website, you get free shipping! Plus, you can get a 5% discount if you are into the military, police, and fire department. 
  • Bells of Steel is offering 100% money back guarantee. If you don’t like it, you can return it within 30 days. 
  • Many buyers have stated that the customer service team is quite prompt and cooperative

Things that can be improved: 

  • A few buyers have stated that the handles that come with this set are sturdy but they are not too comfortable, especially if you are lifting heavy weights. 
  • The weights swing a bit when you do rigorous workouts. You need to be careful not to hurt yourself. 
  • Some buyers found the cable to be excessively long. Basically, this cable is designed to be used on a power rack or power cage, which are typically 8’ high. If you hang it at a lower height, it will be a bit longer. Bells of Steel has offered a solution in this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nX-iuOJJQIA&feature=youtu.be 

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Our Rating: 4.7

Our Verdict: 

The manufacturer recommends that you must anchor it to power racks or standalone pull up bars. That way, you won’t find the cable long and uncomfortable. If you don’t have a pullup bar, here is a list of 13 best doorway pullup bars that do not require any screws. Further, if you are lifting heavy weight, you must consider investing in a good quality well-padded handle. 

TITAN Tricep and LAT Pulley System for T-3

As you can guess from its name, it is meant to be exclusively used with the T-3 range of power racks by Titan Fitness. However, some buyers have used it on power cages of other brands and makes and it does work properly with them too. However, it is exclusively meant to be used with power cages; not with pullup bars, ceiling hooks, etc. DO NOT BUY IT IF YOU DON’T OWN A POWER CAGE

Features:

  • The set includes two rack-mounted pulleys, a cable, and two carabiners. 
  • The cable measures 118”.
  • This home pulley system is exclusively meant to be used with T-3 racks and not independently. 
  • It has a weight-bearing capacity of 440lbs

What we like about it:

  • It comes with all the necessary hardware for assembly
  • It is a heavy-duty product meant for serious fitness trainers. Everything included with this Titan fitness tricep and lat pulley system for T-3 racks is well-built and durable. No compromises have been made in terms of quality
  • It is definitely an affordable alternative to the expensive lat systems. 

Things that can be improved: 

  • The price is misleading. This Titan Fitness home cable pulley system for T3 racks costs about $55 but it doesn’t include the loading pin and the cable attachments such as a handle. You have to buy them separately. The manufacturer has mentioned it clearly in the product description. So basically, it is not that inexpensive. 
  • The pulley is made of dense plastic; not metal. Although none of the buyers have expressed their dissatisfaction over it, using metal for the pulley would have helped justify the price. 
  • Doesn’t come with clear instructions for installation. You may have to do some guesswork but it’s not that difficult. 

Our Rating: 4.6/5

Our Verdict: 

If you own a T-3 rack and want to upgrade it with a lat-pulley system, this product will offer you a cheaper and yet effective solution. We don’t like it being made exclusively for T-3 racks. Although some buyers have stated that it can be installed in any power rack that has the same hole spacing as T-3 racks, you still can’t be sure if it will work. Nevertheless, T-3 rack users will be extremely satisfied to have it in their home gym.

Valor Fitness PY-1 | Portable Cable Station

This is another economical yet durable cable pulley system for home use. Although the manufacturer claims it to have a weight-bearing capacity of 300lbs, the buyers are quite doubtful about it. The pulley gets unscrewed frequently and the cable can also break when used for lifting heavy weights. 

But, we still chose it because it can hold a respectable amount of weight for any average person. 

Features: 

  • The set includes a heavy-duty steel pulley, a cable, a weight plate ring strap, and a pull-down strap
  • The cable is sheathed to enhance its durability. 
  • The manufacturer claims that it can hold up to 300lbs weight. 
  • You can use almost all types of cable attachments such as tricep rope, triangle chest pull, straight pull handle, tricep V bar, etc. 
  • You can install it anywhere including your power racks, pullup bar, ceiling hook, door hooks, etc. 

What we like about it:

  • This is a highly economical home pulley system meant for casual workouts and that’s what most of us need. 
  • The pulley provides a smooth and silent operation. 
  • Valor Fitness is a renowned brand with an amazing customer service team. In case you receive a faulty product or in case it breaks sooner than you expected, you can contact them.

Things that can be improved: 

  • Irrespective of what the manufacturer has claimed, we strongly recommend you not to use this Valor Fitness PY1 cable pulley system for lifting heavy weights. Even though the cable is sheathed, it is not strong enough to bear rough use. 
  • Some buyers have stated that the eyebolt of the pulley is not a very secure type. It can unscrew when used roughly. You need to tighten it regularly to avoid accidents. 
  • The cable measures 75”, which can be shorter for some people. 

Our Rating: 4.5/5

Our Verdict: 

This Valor Fitness home pulley system for cable exercises requires some maintenance and gentle use. It is meant for beginners and for casual exercising. Being economical, it is a good option for people who are looking for inexpensive ways to keep themselves fit during the pandemic. 

Wrap up 

Although home pulley systems are safe for use, you need to follow the same safety tips that you would follow when using a proper lat pulley system. Below, we have listed a few of them that you must not ignore: 

  • Start with small loads. Even though you have bought the most expensive and well-rated cable pulley system for home gym, there are chances that it could break. Moreover, you are new to it, so go slow.  
  • Never overload the weight pin. Also, do not trust the manufacturer’s weight recommendations. As we have read above, not all cable pulley systems marked safe for 400lbs are actually safe. Trust buyers’ feedback. 
  • Control your movements. Working out rigorously can make the weights swing and hurt you. 
  • Always place a yoga mat, a blanket, a carpet, etc. below the place where the weights will land when done. This is especially important if you are new to it. In case you lose your control and drop the weights suddenly, your floor will be saved from damage. If you are a dedicated fitness enthusiast, you can opt for dedicated home gym flooring options. Here are our top recommendations. 

As obvious, home gym pulley systems do not come with weight plates. You need to buy them separately. Most of them come with weight pins that can hold olympic plates with 2” hole spacing. If you don’t have them, you can check out our blog on best bumper olympic plates for some of the best recommendations. 

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