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Strength Training Principles and Exercises that build BIG strong arms!

Here are top 6 exercises to build your arm muscles. Before performing these exercises, it is crucial to understand 3 training principles to ensure that you are making the most out of these movements. These training principles are technique, load selection and time under tension (TUT).

Training Principles

Technique

Having the correct technique while preforming any exercise is absolutely crucial for anyone that wants to build muscle efficiently for a long period of time. By having good technique you’ll increase the amount of muscle activation you get while also decreasing the chances of injury.

Load selection

Load selection seems straight forward, heavier weight = bigger muscles, but that isn’t always the case. Load selection is important but you don’t want to sacrifice your technique, time under tension or the ability to contract your muscle while preforming the exercise. If you find that you’re lifting weights that are a bit too heavy, it’s probably best to lower the weight.

Time under tension

Time under tension means the length of time that your muscles are under tension while preforming an exercise. There are many studies that show the link between increased time under tension with more mechanical tension which in turn will increase muscle hypertrophy (muscle building).

Top 6 exercises for arm building

Barbell Bicep Curl

To perform a Barbell bicep curl:

  • Maintain a straight back and tight core to eliminate any swinging.
  • Hug your elbows to the side of your body so your arms don’t move.
  • As you curl up try and squeeze you bicep while preforming the movement.
  • Lower the barbell slowly while maintaining tension on your bicep.

Dumbbell hammer Curl

To perform a Hammer curl:

  • Maintain a straight back and tight core to eliminate any swinging.
  • Hug your elbows to the side of your body so your arms don’t move.
  • Have you palms facing each other the whole time while preforming the movement.
  • As you curl up squeeze your bicep while preforming the movement.
  • Lower the dumbbells slower while maintaining tension on your bicep.

Dumbbell Bicep Curl

  • Maintain a straight back and tight core to eliminate any swinging.
  • Hug your elbows to the side of your body so your arms don’t move.
  • Have your palms facing each other at the start of the movement.
  • As you curl up you will slowly rotate your hands so that your palms are facing the sky by the end of the movement.
  • Lower the dumbbells slower while maintaining tension on your bicep and slowly rotate your hand back to their original start position.

Overhead Tricep Extensions

  • Engage your core to ensure that back stays protected while performing this movement.
  • Hold the weight above your head with your arms lock out and that will be your starting position.
  • As you lower the weight behind your head make sure you don’t flare out your elbows to much.
  • As you lower the weight when your forearms go lower then parallel with the floor, start to move the weight back up to your starting position.

Rope Tricep Extensions

  • Maintain a straight back and tight core to eliminate any swinging.
  • Hug your elbows to the side of your body so your arms don’t move.
  • Lower the weight while squeezing your triceps.
  • Once your arm is fully extended then slowly move your arm back to its starting position.

Close Grip Bench

  • Grab the bar at shoulder width or a bit closer(depends of comfort).
  • While lowering the bar make sure you keep your elbows tucked in to ensure that you’re putting most of the load onto your triceps and not your chest.
  • Once the bar touches your chest push the bar up while making sure you elbows don’t flare out.