Bicep and Tricep Exercises: Using Proper Form

This information is a ‘how to check yourself before you wreck yourself when it comes to weight training’. A lot of us, beginners and athletes alike, lose ‘form’ when we’re doing exercises and that leaves us susceptible to two things: 1. We’re not going to get the results we want from the exercise, and 2. We leave ourselves open to injury which is never a good thing.

So, here are some basic bicep and tricep exercises which will get your arms jacked!

Bicep Exercises

Instead of holding your arms straight down in front of you, try holding them out to the sides a little bit and then turn them at a 45 degree angle.  This is going to engage your muscles the entire time. Bring one arm up at a time, three quarters of the way, then both arms together. To maintain correct form, your elbows should stay stationary, your shoulders should be back and your chest pushed out. If you want to engage your core during this exercise, just bend your knees slightly and tighten those abs and then this exercise will work more than one muscle group – and you’ll notice that when one arm is lifting the dumbbell, the other arm is still engaged because it is holding the weight out to your side. 

Another great bicep exercise that is going to work your forearms as well, is similar to the curl, but you are kind of doing a reverse curl – again bend your knees slightly, stand with feet shoulder width apart, holding a couple of dumbbells with your palms facing behind you, engage your abdominal muscles, shoulders back and chest out and you are going to lift the weight up and away from you by bending your arm at the elbow and keeping your upper arm by your side. Return your weight to the start position, by your side and raise the other weight. You can raise one weight, then the other, then both together, ie. 1, 1, 2. Try not to jerk your body up, because that is bad form and keep those elbows stationary. Ten reps of the 1, 1, 2 should do it – if you don’t feel a burn at the end of that exercise, increase your weight. The difference between pain and burn is that pain is going to feel like a sharp stabbing sensation, whilst a burn is going to feel like you just don’t have any energy left in your muscles like an exhaustion feeling.

Tricep Exercises

A great tricep exercise that you can do at home is a chair dip. Just take a regular chair, make sure that it is sturdy and it’s not going to rock, that it is on a stable surface, extend your legs straight out in front of you, taking hold of the front of the chair edge.

tricep exercises - chair dip
tricep exercises – chair dip 1

When you do these dips, your arms are going to end up at a 90 degree angle and your bum will come straight down to the floor.

tricep exercises - chair dip
tricep exercises – chair dip 2

Don’t throw your hips up, you just want to create a smooth straight up and down movement. 12 – 15 reps of this is a great set and if you want to intensify the exercise, you add another chair facing you, place your legs straight in front of you on the second chair, and then you will do a full elevated dip. 

tricep exercises - chair dip
tricep exercises – double chair dip

Another great tricep exercise is the tricep kickback. Take one weight, bend over with your feet shoulder width apart and your back flat, completely straight and your head in neutral position. Bring the weight up to your chest, your elbow back, bring the weight close to your body, and then just kick the weight back behind you.

tricep exercises - tricep kickback
tricep exercises – tricep kickback 1

Make sure that your elbow stays in a static position – you don’t want it jerking around and use a steady movement.

tricep exercises - tricep kickback
tricep exercises – tricep kickback 2

You can also do this in a lunge position, which is a position that I prefer – keep your abs tight during this entire exercise and then you will be working your core as well as your triceps – and then again, keep your back straight, and kick your arm out behind you, keeping your upper arm and elbow static. 12 – 15 reps of this will be a great exercise. 

The above exercises are just examples of biceps and triceps exercises that I do as part of my personal routine but if you want more full body workouts, check out the workouts section in the navigation bar at the top. 


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