Best Bicep Exercises For Maximum Growth
Probably the body part that catches the most attention are the biceps. They are usually the most noticeable part on a physique at first glance. A pair of well developed arms with veins and muscles popping out everywhere catch more attention than big legs, big chest, and big backs. I remember seeing Arnold’s arms as a kid and wanting a pair of them. Of course, he had much more than just arms, but his biceps looked like mini mountains. So how does one go about building these mini mountains? I can tell you how not to go about it. You need to have the proper mind set and choose the proper exercises. Far too often, I see the young guys do all the wrong exercises. They choose the stuff they see in magazines versus the movements that actually provide the most bang for the buck. We will break down the best bicep exercises to utilize and why.
In my eyes, the biggest mistakes made during all training are in the following order: 1) Poor exercise selection 2) Improper loading 3) Improper volume. Too often, people do redundant movements because they truly don’t understand the bets way to stimulate the muscle maximally. I feel that a variety of angles is paramount to fully develop a great physique. For instance, guys will do Flat Dumbell Chest Press and then do Flat Barbell Chest Press. These are essentially the same movement, done in the same plane, just have a different implement (bar vs dumbell) in the hands. I personally prefer all angles and movements be different so that there isn’t a pattern overload. So lets breakdown what I consider the 3 basic bicep categories.
Best Bicep Exercises Based On Planes Of Motion
Standing Curl Variations-
These are movements that are done on the feet with either a barbell, a dumbell, or a cable. The basic set up is that these exercise are done with the humerus(upper arm bone) being straight down the body with the elbow near the hip. The motion is more limited with a barbell because it doesn’t allow for much pronation or supination. The dumbell obviously allows for more range of motion but less loading. They both have their benefits and should be used interchangeably.
Preacher Curl Variations-
These are movements that are done with the elbow at a 45 degree angle in front of the body or perpendicular to the body or 90 degrees. Preacher Curls are great for placing more stress into the lower portion of the biceps because the elbow is out front of the body, thus changing the leverages on the biceps. You can do these with a barbell, EZ curl bar, dumbell, a cable, or a machine.
Hammer Curl Variations-
Hammer Curls are wonderful for building up the bracioradialis and the brachialis. These muscles with at the elbow joint on the upper part of the forearm. No arm is complete without this tie in nature of development. Arms look terrible when the upper arm is 20″ around and the lower arm is 13″. These can be done with a dumbell, a bar, a rope, or a cable.
Great Bicep Programming
In my experience, a good arm workout consists of 12-16 sets of work in a 6-15 rep range for 80% of the workouts. Going below 6 reps is often not enough work to stimulate growth. There is however occasions to push the weight and drop the repetitions. That being said, going above 15 reps is often too little load to elicit growth. Yeah the muscle burns, but that isn’t an indication that you caused the muscle to grow. So how do you program the workout correctly? I always warm up the joint in a manner that gets me 2-3 sets before I get up to what I consider work weight. This way, the muscle is warmed up in a manner specific to the movement. Below is a sample of a workout I would do or have my clients do regularly.
- Barbell Curl 3-5 sets at 8-12 reps increasing the load and lowering the reps as you go.
- EZ Bar Preacher Curl 3-5 sets at 8-12 reps increasing the load and lowering the reps as you go.
- Dumbell Hammer Curl 3-5 sets at 8-12 reps increasing the load and lowering the reps as you go.
These movements cover all the elements of a great bicep workout. These hit multiple angles and work up to a maximal load in a given repetition range. These are basic bread and butter type of movements that provide the most return on investment in my mind. Too often these days, there is a push to have some crazy programming with too many elements. I look at Ronnie Coleman and Dorian Yates, the two greatest bodybuilders in my eyes. They get that nod because they both trained harder than just about anyone out there. They were not using any fancy cable, band and chain movements. I love Mountain Dog training, but I feel it is for experienced lifters. It’s a way to avoid stressing out the joints, but I feel I can do that just by adjusting how I load my body. Do the heavy basic movements and reap the benefits. These are the Best Bicep Exercises in my estimation. Use Wyked 3.0 to get ready for an all out assault on the biceps. The use Liquid Labs Pro Series for maximum growth to look your best.