How to swing biceps – the best exercise program for rapid muscle growth. Biceps training – how often it should be done and what weight you should work with?
Biceps Workout Rules
You don’t need countless exercises to pump up your biceps quickly. Correct training of the muscles always consists of using a few effective exercises, adequate working weight, and complete control of the techniques. Biceps only grow when the athlete consciously involves the muscle in his workout activities and not just by lifting weights.
The Crossfit results are known to beginners – lifting the barbell, successive lifting of the dumbbell “hammer” and isolated lifting (pictured above). The secret of rapid muscle growth is the consistent involvement of the biceps during training. However, the excessive use of large weights does not help at all, instead, it makes the equipment difficult to control and could be harmful.
In addition, the biceps training program includes pumping forearm exercises, which are performed with relatively light weights paired with an ample amount of repetitions (about 12-15). This enhances blood flow in the muscle which significantly increases its effectiveness. We also recall the triceps training – it is impossible to create really big arms without following it too.
Biceps muscle anatomy
Biceps are the most noticeable and hefty muscles in the arm. From an anatomical point of view, the proximal part of the biceps consists of two heads – long and short, which determines its “hunchback” shape. Its main function is to provide an easy movement to bend the shoulder in the shoulder joint and forearm in the elbow.
Involving the biceps in work is always associated with the functions of other muscles – from the triceps to the muscles of the shoulder and back. That is why pumping biceps necessarily implies strengthening the muscles of the forearms, triceps, and deltas – otherwise, you simply cannot technically perform heavyweight biceps exercises correctly.
Best Biceps Exercise
Barbell lifting while standing is the best exercise for pumping and increasing the muscle mass of your biceps. A huge advantage is the ability to train with larger weights and following it up with a relatively simple flow of exercise techniques. During the sumo squats, the elbows should be motionless (beginners are recommended to press them to the belt), and the body should not sway – this will guarantee the involvement of the biceps.
At the bottom point of the exercise, hold for a second, then, with full control of the biceps, lift the barbell up. The movement should be smooth and not too fast. At the top point, hold on for a second to tense your biceps even more. Doing so is necessary for all exercises that use the hands. It also increases muscle involvement and regulates blood flow.
How to train your biceps?
If you want to quickly pump up your biceps, you can train it twice a week – but not too often. For example, you can exercise your biceps only on select days of the week such as Monday or Friday. Start your workout with exercises for large muscle groups (back, chest, legs) – but exclusively in the form of preparation for pumping your hands. After 3-4 multi-joint exercises, proceed to bicep workouts.
Functional exercises can be used as multi-joint exercises – including horizontal bar exercises and kettlebell exercises. They are not only useful for strength improvement but also to enhance posture, as well as to exert pressure in the muscles of the body to achieve a more athletic figure.
Is it possible to pump biceps at home?
In order to pump biceps at home, you will need either a set of collapsible dumbbells with a fairly heavy amount of weight or a full-fledged barbell. Otherwise, an effective training session will not work. Light dumbbells and bodyweight exercises can bring unexpected results of bicep growth that is commonly formed like that of an untrained beginner or girl.
Despite the fact that training with pull-back or pull-ups on the horizontal bar increases the growth of muscles in the hands, it will also reach its physical limit quickly. With this, you will need proper training equipment – these equipments are real barbells or heavy dumbbells, without this equipment, it would be difficult to pump biceps.
Biceps Workout Program
Most beginner athletes may notice that their biceps stop growing even with a constant increase in working weights or doing isolated exercises. However, biceps training is always based on the “progress – rest – shift – progress” pattern. In this case, a shift is usually achieved through the use of drop set and superset exercises.
Below is a training program for biceps based on complex supersets that give muscles a powerful impetus for bicep growth. It helps ward off growth stagnation and quickly build up biceps in no time.
|Lifting the EZ Bar for Biceps
A curved bar (or EZ-bar) helps to change the mechanics of the exercise and using it involves the inside of the biceps – pushing the muscles up and making it bigger.
|Lifting Dumbbell Biceps
A classic biceps exercise that develops the long part of the biceps muscle. It can be performed with palms facing upwards, as well as with palms perpendicular to the floor (lifting “hammer”).
|Concentrated biceps flexion
One of the best isolating biceps exercises. During execution, the elbow is fixed and rests tightly on the inner part of the thigh – this helps increase the load on the biceps.
These biceps exercises are performed in 10 sets each without breaks in between, which concludes in a total of 4 sets. The break between the exercises is approximately 30 seconds. But keep in mind that it is not recommended to add additional exercises to this program. Or to perform them more often than once a week.
The secret of getting traced veins
A lot of beginners dream not only to quickly pump up their biceps but also to achieve traced and noticeable veins in their arms too. However, traced veins are not affected by physical training itself, but rather by genetic factors and the total amount of subcutaneous fat in the body too. In this case, drying most often significantly increases the rendering of the venous network on the biceps.
In addition, pre-workout exercises containing nitric oxide also helps expand the venous channels, increasing the filling of blood in the veins. However, keep in mind that nitric oxide only provides a temporary and short-term effect. Secondly, such additives contain contraindications that are not suitable for all people.
Building biceps is very popular within bodybuilders. It was for them that a lot of basic isolating and other special exercises were invented, although, even with proper pumping, triceps will have a much larger effect and result. However, the fact remains that the two-headed muscles of the arms are more popular. Why do you think this opinion is a stereotype?
The biceps can be pumped and trained. There are plenty of designated places for it, even at your own home without gym equipment. You can always improvise tools and equipment that can be useful for your exercise. Below are places that are suitable for your bicep exercise, let’s start with the gym.
Bicep workouts at the gym
Any gym can provide its customers with at least a minimum set of equipment. This can be a bar with weights and dumbbells. I’m not talking about the Scotch bench, or the special block simulators and the EZ-neck. But if ever they have this equipment, then good for you. With dedication, you will get bulky biceps and triceps in no time.
Biceps can be pumped by doing accentuated exercises. You can also pair this with back pumping exercises such as slope rod pulling, bar pull-ups, and upper and lower block pull-ups. In general, any exercises for the development of the widest muscles of the back can stimulate the biceps growth – they work “in pairs.” Should you know the secrets and techniques of bicep growth, then it would be to your benefit, however, it is likely that sooner or later such exercises will be missed out and you will still have to use the basic ones.
Bicep workouts at home
At home, you can also train with dumbbells and use the above exercises with the help of a mirror. Pumping biceps at home involves pulling up on a horizontal bar with a back grip on one hand or by using your wrists.
Convenient bicep equipment is a rubber expander. Just like dumbbells, it doesn’t take up too much space.
If you have gym equipment at home, you are lucky. But if you don’t, and still want to look pumped up, then fret not! Find five or six-liter plastic containers. Fill them with water, or even better with sand, and voila! You can now perform various flexing / stretching bicep exercises.
Using gym equipment to pump your biceps
Working at the gym is easier and results are faster because you can perform more than 3-4 exercises. You can use various equipment to work out and will not only be focused on your biceps, but also in different parts of your body. A good trainer can help organize highly effective workouts for a safer experience. In the gym, you can perform concentrated bicep workouts with maximum weights, which is not doable at home.
Always remember that if your goal is to get effective muscle development, then do the exercises without cheating.
At home, you are limited when it comes to working out your biceps and it’s a different story when you workout at the gym. Lifting the bar while standing is a basic bicep exercise and it is considered one of the most effective ways of increasing the volume and strength of those muscles.
The bar must be lifted at the shoulder level while gripping it from the bottom. Doing so enables the biceps to contract. Ensure that the elbows are not extended forward. This usually happens when you try to lift the barbell higher. Avoid doing this as the load will transfer from the biceps to the delta.
Arm curl sitting on an incline bench
To perform this exercise, you need to sit on an inclined bench and pick up dumbbells. Legs should be firmly pressed to the floor and then back to the back of the bench. Hands should be alternately bent at the elbow joints, lifting dumbbells. In the upper position, you need to maximize the brushes towards you. Elbows must not be fed forward.
Working with a barbell on Scott’s bench
The bar should be held back with a medium grip. This grip style ensures that the biceps will be worked out in the best way. Rest your shoulders on support. In this position, the load falls only on the biceps. This exercise is especially effective in pumping the lower biceps. If you feel excessive tension in the wrist joints, you can use a modified bar instead.
Alternatively, you can use Scott’s bench to do biceps exercises with dumbbells.
A number of repetitions: 8-12. A number of approaches: 3.
Basic biceps exercises can be performed without the use of simulators. But, if it is possible to use such equipment, then go for it.
Complex bicep exercises should be done using simulators. Using such equipment increases productivity.
Arm curl using the lower block
- stand in front of the simulator and take the handle of the lower block with a reverse grip;
- Pull the handles until it reaches your shoulders. Do this by bending the arms in the elbow joints;
When performing this exercise, the elbows should be pressed to the body so that the load falls only on the biceps.
You can change the handle of the simulator with ropes. Grasp them so that the bent fingers are pointing towards each other.
Stand straight and keep your feet shoulder-width apart. Hold both handles and slowly pull your hands to the top of your head. When extending the arms, make sure that the load does not drop completely, thus putting tension to your arms. When you exhale, keep your arms apart. But when inhaling, keep them bent.
The number of repetitions: 8-12. The number of approaches: 1-2.
This exercise is often performed as a final exercise.
Standing weight pull-ups – stand straight, press your elbows against your body, and bend your hands until they reach elbow level. Bring the bar to shoulder level and lower it again. That’s the whole exercise. The same thing can be done with the EZ-neck.
Different widths of grip can affect the outer and inner side of the biceps.
Alternate dumbbell bending – take two dumbbells in each hand while keeping them lowered along the body. With your right hand, bend your elbow and turn with a brush (palm facing towards you) while bringing the dumbbell almost to the shoulder. While lowering the bent hand, do the same for the opposite hand and repeat.
Hammer – the starting position is the same as in the previous exercise (dumbbells are freely lowered at the sides while palms are facing towards you). But this time, don’t rotate with brushes. Instead, make them face each other.
Perform alternate bending of the hands in the elbow joints while maintaining a clear fixation. When performing this exercise, you will get the impression that you are working with two hammers.
Concentrated bicep bending – sit on a bench or any convenient place while keeping your feet on the floor. Take one dumbbell using your right hand, and place the elbow on the inner side of the leg, resting on it with the lower part of the triceps. Lift and lower the dumbbell as much as you can and repeat.
The bench of Scotts – sit straight, get a curved bar or dumbbell, and rest your elbows on the cushion. Flex and extend your arms while keeping your elbow joints intact.
This simulator is designed to remove the load from the waist and transfer it to the biceps just like previous exercises.
The first three exercises are basic ones while the last two are more difficult. We highly recommend that you use the basics in the initial stages when isolating and use the advance only after the acquisition of semi-annual exercises.
There are also special exercises including hand bending using a block simulator, where the handle is placed at the knee level. Also, exercising with a rubber expander can also be attributed to special or advanced ones. What exercises will you choose?
How to train at home
Gym exercises are also suitable at home. As long as you have a barbell or dumbbell, then home exercises are just a piece of cake. But, if you don’t have any weight lifting equipment, you can use containers filled with sand or water as an alternative.
lexion-extension of hands – take the containers by the handles and start bending your arms in the elbows while bringing your palms almost to your shoulders. Lower it again and repeat. It’s easy, right?
Concentrated bending of hands – to take in one hand a container, placing the hands themselves, as described in the exercise “concentrated biceps flexion”. Perform the same exercise.
And in general, if you do not have the opportunity to buy collapsible dumbbells, then fork out for an expander, I still advise you to make useful things, and not to settle for low-quality equipment for your bicep exercise at home.
First, we will talk about how to pump biceps at home. Let’s say that for some reason you do not have the opportunity to attend the gym. Does this mean that you need to stop training? Of course not.
It is quite possible to perform many exercises for biceps at home. The simplest thing you can do at home is push-ups from the floor. Of course, this exercise is not only for biceps, but also for all other muscles of the arms, shoulder girdle, and chest. But this exercise is the most affordable. If you want to increase the load, then you can put on a backpack with a load on your back.
Pumping biceps with dumbbells is easy enough. Such training can be performed both in the gym and at home.
Dumbbell Arm Curl
The most effective way to perform this exercise is to bend your arms while sitting on a chair.
- sit on a chair;
- take dumbbells;
- bend and extend the arms in the elbow joints.
Keep your arms bent while exhaling and unbent when inhaling. Start with 8-12 repetitions. If it feels easier after several tries, then slowly increase the weight of the dumbbells.
Number of approaches: 3
The position of the hands may be different, but you can keep the same amount of weights while resting your elbow on your knee or upper thigh. You can successfully alternate all of these positions while slowly unbending and bending your hands. You also have the option to exert a maximum load on the desired muscle too. Thanks to its simplicity, lifting dumbbells while sitting is a very effective exercise that allows you to work out your muscles effectively.
Dumbbell Hammer Lifting
This one helps form your biceps with the help of dumbbells. This short exercise helps pump the lateral part of your biceps to enhance its volume. It is performed as follows:
- Stand up straight;
- Put your hands on the sides of your body while holding dumbbells;
- Brushes of fingers extended to the thigh (neutral grip);
- Alternately raise the dumbbells up to the shoulder and repeat;
During execution, the back should be kept straight without bending forward. Do not move your elbows while doing the exercise. The entire load should fall only on your biceps. While bending one arm, the other should not be hung relaxed. It should be slightly bent at the elbow while keeping it tense.
In each extreme position, the hands should be held for about 1-2 seconds. The back can be slightly bent, but it should be fixed only in one position throughout the set.
The number of repetitions: 8-12. The number of approaches: 3.
Alternatively, you can raise your hands together. Doing so increases the load so be careful not to push the dumbbells with the movements of your legs and body.
Exercise for the biceps “hammer” is doable both by a beginner or an experienced bodybuilder. In addition to training the biceps directly, this exercise is useful to develop the brachioradialis muscle. This gives both of your biceps an even and consistent form.
Horizontal bar exercises
If there is a horizontal bar in your home, doing horizontal bar pull-ups will also positively affect the development of your biceps. You can do this by doing a direct grip pull up or the other way around.
The number of repetitions: 10-15. A number of approaches: 3.
If the task becomes easy, there’s no need to increase the number of repetitions. It is better to hang extra weight at your feet. For better results when doing such pull-ups, avoid straightening your arms completely.
All the exercises mentioned here must be performed smoothly. By adhering to the rules of these exercises, your muscles will be worked out evenly with satisfying results. Trust the process and soon you will have evenly volumed biceps. What’s best is that you can do all of these even at home without visiting the gym.
By performing these exercises, you can easily achieve that bicep volume you’re yearning for. It is very important to properly organize your workouts to avoid excessive fatigue and injuries. Visit the gym daily or improvise at home. It is highly recommended to take rests every other day to give your biceps time to recover. Perform warm-up exercises before executing each workout. Doing so prevents bicep injury that may affect the biceps tendon.