Many people only think of bulging biceps when they think of someone with strong arms, but your triceps are the largest muscles in your arm. With proper training and conditioningyou may just have strangers walking up to you and asking about the exercises you do to exercise your arms.
Your triceps are located at the back of your upper arms, and they force movements that require your arms to protrude. Your triceps and biceps complement each other, making most arm movements possible.
Strong triceps and biceps allow you to get more out of your torso workouts, as they are often engaged. For example, you can not bench press weights that are too much for your arms, even if your chest muscles strong enough to handle them.
Target your triceps with these exercises
Want to build bigger, stronger and more defined triceps? Here are some exercises you can incorporate into your fitness routine:
Upset is probably the most effective body weight exercise for your torso, and they can be adjusted to target more of your triceps. The trick is to bring your elbows closer to your body, forcing your triceps to do more work. Here’s how to perform a modified pushup:
- Start in a plank position, with your hands about six inches apart. Your elbows should touch your upper body.
- Slowly lower yourself to the floor while keeping your whole body straight.
- Push your body back to the starting position by slowly stretching your arms to complete a repetition. Your triceps should do most of the work. Aim for two to three sets.
2) Close grip bench press
Your triceps are involved when you perform a push-up motion. Bringing your hands closer while performing such movements increases the load placed on your triceps. Close-up bench presses are an effective way to force your triceps to handle heavy weights that build bigger, stronger muscles, as your chest muscles are also involved.
The only difference between a regular bench press and a tight grip version is the position of your hands. The closer your hands are to each other, the more work your triceps are forced to perform. The farther your hands are from each other; the more your chest muscles are activated.
Here’s how to run a bank press:
- Lie flat on a bench press. Your feet should be flat on the floor, and your shoulder blades and glutes should touch the couch.
- Warm up with just the barbell before diving into the exercise. Get as many repetitions as you can before you start to feel a slight burn.
- Add as much weight as you are comfortable with and get back in position.
- Move your hands about six to twelve inches apart. Push the weight off the rack and slowly lower it.
- Push the weight back to return to the starting position to complete a repetition. Avoid hyper-stretching or lock your arms at the top.
3) Cable Triceps Print
Here’s a great way to straighten your triceps in a highly controlled way. You will use a cable column to perform the movement, allowing you to choose weights that fit your fitness goals. Use heavy weights with which you can only perform four to eight repetitions if building bigger, stronger muscles is your main priority. Lighter weights that allow you to perform 20 repetitions are ideal for build muscle definition and endurance.
Here’s how to perform the exercise:
- Start standing while grabbing a bar or rope from a cable string. Your elbows should be right next to your torso, and your hands should be shoulder-width apart.
- Bend your torso at a 45 degree angle by hinging your hips back. Team up glutes and core.
- While just moving at the elbows, push the bar or rope down. Pause at full extension and slowly return to the starting position to complete a repetition. Aim for three sets.
4) Halter setback
It may take some exercise to get used to this exercise, but it is one of the most effective ways to strengthen your triceps muscles. The exercise forces your triceps to handle two of their primary responsibilities simultaneously: enabling arm extension movements and stabilizing you shoulder muscles.
The exercise has many variations, and it can be performed while sitting or standing. You will need some dumbbells to do this. Here’s what it looks like:
- Start standing with a few dumbbells in your hands and your feet hip-width apart.
- Hinge forward at your waist so that your back is almost parallel to the ground.
- Bring your hands close to your chest so that your elbows form a 90 degree angle.
- Stretch your arms and move the dumbbells behind your torso with your elbows.
- Pause for a second at the top and slowly return to the starting position to complete a repetition. Aim for two to three sets of 6 to 12 repetitions each.
5) Skull breakers
Do you wonder why these are called skull breakers? This is what can happen if you move yourself forward. It’s a simple exercise, but it should be performed in a controlled manner, with weights you can handle. The exercise isolates your triceps and allows you to load heavy weights.
The exercise can be performed with a dumbbell or barbell. Many lifters prefer to run skull breakers with barbells as this allows them to add more weights. To perform the exercise:
- Lie on a bench with your feet flat on the floor or couch if you have a spotter. If not, hold the weight while getting in position.
- Bring the weight up to your head so that your upper arm is perpendicular to the floor.
- Just move at your elbows, stretch your arms, move the weight away from your head.
- Stop just before you reach full extension and slowly return to the starting position to complete a repetition. Aim for three sets of 6 to 12 repetitions each.
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