Looking to get bigger arms? If so, you aren’t alone. One of the top goals that many people who are hitting the gym regularly, aiming to build a better body have is getting a pair of sizeable and heavily defined arms.
If that’s the case, you need to stop and take a good look at your training protocol. The sad fact is that far too many people with this goal approach it in entirely the wrong manner, only moving further and further away from success.
If your approach is to go in and perform as many sets of bicep curls and tricep extensions you can muster, you need a slight adjustment in approach.
Let’s go over what you should know for better results.
The very first thing to consider is the optimal exercises to be doing for your arm workout session. If you are not doing productive exercises, it doesn’t really matter what you do, you won’t get results.
First things first. Remember, one of the biggest tenants of building muscle size is lifting a heavier and heavier amount of weight.
And, which exercises do you lift heaviest on? Compound movements.
But yet, these are what are typically left out of an arm building workout plan.
Your bent over rows, pull-ups, pull-downs, and chest presses are all going to help target your biceps and triceps along with the other muscle groups of the back, shoulders, and chest. Plus, since you have these powerful muscles behind you, you will lift more weight overall, thus seeing greater size gains.
The optimal solution for any bicep and tricep workout routine is to first perform compound exercises that target these two muscle groups as assistor muscle groups, and the once they are starting to get fatigued, you can then add in the isolation movements that will help bring them to a point a final fatigue.
When it comes to isolation exercise selection, the big thing to remember is variety. You don’t necessarily have to do 5 different exercises variations per workout – in fact this can be counterproductive to your results, but you should alternate between exercises over time.
Doing so will help keep the muscles guessing as to what’s coming next, ensuring you move forward to constantly see results.
Especially when it comes to tricep training, you have three heads of the tricep muscle, so adding more variation will ensure that all heads get hit. You should always aim to do at least one exercise that has a pulling type of movement pattern (overhead tricep extension) and another that has a pushing movement pattern (such as tricep push-ups).
Some good bicep and tricep variations to include in your workout routine are:
Rotating curls (rotate the wrist as you move the weight upwards)
Overhead tricep extension
So now that you know which exercises to be choosing as you go about your arm workout, what can you do to accelerate progress?
First, really make sure that you focus on the mind-muscle contraction. The more you really think about contracting your muscles as you go about the movement, the more you will actually stress each muscle fiber.
Don’t just go through the movement or there is a high chance that momentum will be carrying you through.
In addition to that, you should also consider using some of the compound exercise variations that will still work all the main muscles, but in a way that stimulates the arms better.
For instance, on a bent over row, use an underhand rather than overhand grip. You’ll immediately notice the difference in your biceps.
Likewise, when doing a bench press, consider placing the hands closer together or if you really want a full blown tricep movement, reverse your grip on the bar.
This will immediately shift more tension to just the tricep muscles alone.
For your push-ups, the triangle push-up is a perfect way to add more challenge to the tricep muscle itself.
Little adjustments like this go a long way, so make sure that you keep them in mind.
Finally, the last point to note is that don’t overdo it on the volume front. Remember, if you hit the muscles hard, you don’t need to be doing 20 sets for biceps and 20 sets for triceps. 4-8 sets for each muscle group is more than sufficient if you are using a proper weight load and good exercises.
So keep these arm building tips in mind and make sure that you are utilizing them in your approach. If you do, you should be seeing stronger arms in no time.
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