Opinions: Best way to train bi's..

  1. Doctor Science
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    Opinions: Best way to train bi's..


    Just want to see what everyone has to say about this..

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    Here's what I think...

    ARE YOU WORKING YOUR BICEPS TO THEIR FULLEST?

    (You May be Surprised)
    There'll be no preface to this article. There isn't any need to discuss the appeal of the bicep muscle and its importance to one's overall appearance. Everyone already knows that. Instead, let's get right to the point: Biceps training is probably the most simple form of all bodybuilding exercise, yet thousands of bodybuilders fail to stimulate bicep growth with ample success. There's a reason for that. There's also a solution. If you're among those who never seem to get a good bicep pump and would like to rectify the situation, read on. You're Not Going To Believe This, But...Although it's rarely addressed, the standard curl doesn't directly affect the bicep -- at least that's the case with some people. It all comes down to your anatomical make-up. For an unlucky bunch, the main contributor is the brachialis muscle,
    which runs underneath the outer part of the bicep. That's the muscle most responsible for drawing the hand toward the shoulder. Naturally, as the resistance is increased, the muscle fibers of the bicep come into play, which is why heavy curling will increase bicep size. Simple, right? Maybe not. Since everyone's point of insertion is different, for some, the brachialis may absorb the majority of stress, thus, the biceps function becomes limited. In other words, the biceps will only receive as much stress as the brachialis will allow. More Weight = More Growth. But Where?
    The obvious solution of increasing the stress on the biceps would be to simply increase the weight, but as many of you may have realized, that tactic doesn't always work. Have you ever used an extremely heavy weight for curls only to wind up with sore forearms the following day? That's because the additional
    stress was, once again, handled by the brachialis. They're a very efficient muscle. Unfortunately, by being so efficient, they rob the biceps of additional growth stimulation. You may be able to lift more and more weight, but the biceps remain the same size. Very frustrating. A New Angle On Things: If you're an advanced bodybuilder, you may have tried a series of angles in order
    to better isolate the bi's. This is a necessary part of anyone's training. We all need to discover how to hit a muscle with the optimum force and in the case of the biceps that won't budge, the key is to try and eliminate the brachialis as much
    as possible. Whatever Works Best --Do The Opposite.
    By examining which movements most directly work the brachialis, we can comprehend what not to do. Hammer curls, for instance, will work the forearms and brachi and, interestingly, are easier than standard biceps curls. There's no wonder a cambered bar was once referred to as an "EZ" curl bar. Sure, you can
    handle more weight -- because it takes the strain off of the bicep! It would then stand to reason that positioning the wrist in as opposite a direction as possible would take the stress off of the brachialis and place it more onto the bicep. Therefore, keeping the wrist as straight up as possible will stress the bicep more
    directly. In the case with dumbell curls, keeping the wrist a little outward with the pinky higher than the other fingers is better yet. Of course, when doing barbell curls, a wide grip with a straight bar will most directly work the fibers central to
    the bicep. Don't Preach. The preacher curl is a favorite among many bodybuilders but it, too, is more of a
    brachialis exercise. Think it builds the lower bicep? Can't happen. The entire bicep is either activated or not. There is no "lower" bicep. What the preacher bench does is alleviate stress at the top of the motion making it essentially a "half" curl. So why is it that many champion bodybuilders exalt its effectiveness? It comes down to anatomy. In a fortunate few, such as the phenomenal Larry Scott, the brachi will develop under the bicep resulting in a higher "peak." We should all be so lucky.
    The Laid Back Approach: Going with the "opposite" concept, the best way to circumvent any assistance from the brachialis would be to not lean forward, as is the case with the preacher bench, but to lie backward. Incline curls on an angle of 45 degrees or lower, will place greater emphasis directly on the biceps. Eliminate preacher curls from your routine and replace them with an equal amount of sets of incline curls and you'll
    notice the difference immediately. A Unique Cable Curl For Bigger Bi's: If that deep down ache in the pit of your biceps has been eluding you, here's a movement you're really going to like. Pay special attention to how it's performed, for any deviation won't bring the desired result.

    Set the cables on each end of the station at their lowest position.
    Use a weight that will allow for good form. It's better to go for more reps than to cheat with too heavy a weight. Grab a handle with each hand using an underhand grip and step forward so that your arms are drawn slightly back. Keeping the elbows as close to your sides as possible, curl the weight up. Do not allow the elbows to be drawn up during the curl! This is important! Jutting the elbows up will only displace the stress onto the anterior deltoid and the pectoral minor. Keep the arms down and your elbows back and let the biceps take on the strain.Don't let the fist "curl" toward you. Keep the wrists level throughout. Come to a complete contraction. Squeeze hard at the top of the movement. Do 10 reps and keep the rest between sets to under a minute. Try and make this move the only exercise you use the next time you work biceps and concentrate on making the biceps work throughout the concentric and eccentric movement. Six to ten sets should get the job done if the intensity is high. If you've been getting better at curling but have no additional bicep size to show for your efforts, the problem may be that you really haven't been working your biceps at all! Start applying some of these bicep isolating techniques and you soon may realize that there's a lode of untapped muscle on those upper arms. Dig in and get it.
  3. Senior Member
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    yeh, cables are good... i do like seated db curls though, done on incline... contrary to above post, i like the feel of standing ez bar too, although i agree to a point that soooo many people get some kind of momentum going with em, effectiveness suffers alot... straight bars **** my wrists.
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  4. Doctor Science
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    Originally posted by Biggin
    straight bars **** my wrists.
    my exact problem...

    although i have never tried seated incline dumbbell curls.. ill try that this week..

    so how do you do this cable bicep curl? you take both at once and have it set low? and curl to your shoulders?
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    don't you guys have ez-curl bars? they're much better suited for bicep curls than straight bars.

    i usually do 3-4 sets of bicep curls with the ez curl bar, going up in weight to failure (4-8 reps) and i might throw in the reverse curl which works the forearm
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    i prefer straight bar for your standard bb curl however do use the ez for wider and narrower grip. Also for preachers and spider curls. not sure what a cable curl is huh?....your basic cable curl is connecting a straight bar attachment onto one side of the lowe cable pulley and curling standing up. Of course, you could use the cables for other bicep exercise Sage
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    YJ, not sure where you dug up trhat article, but I disagree with it entirely. I now have just under 18" arms (cold) and my bicep is probably my single best bodypart. I find the brachialis difficult to develop and hurt my elbows trying. The reverse curl hits the top of the forearm and the brachialis. Preacher curls do not engage the brachialis at all. Reverse curls with heavy weight are hard on the elbows and I had to stop.

    The single most effective excercise for a full wide biceps is the STRAIGHT bar curl. Can be hard on wrists and elbows, but hits the bicep more completely than ez-curl barl. Incline dumbell curls are super mass builders as well, and as in ALL biceps movements, strict form should be maintained to keep the shoulders, not the brachialis, from bearing the brunt of the load. I do cheat on my last rep, but that's all. Preacer curls are my 3rd favorite movement, and I use the ez-curl bar here to hit them from a little different angle.

    Cable curls have always failed to give me any pump, and if you can move your arms up enough to brush your hair after a hard workout, you aren't pumped enough!
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    I'd agree that straight-bar curls performed with strict form are the most effective exercise for building well-proportioned biceps. Cable curls do have their place in this context, but I'd certainly designate a smaller emphasis on them.

    With that said, straight-bar curls (along with other exercises) week in and week out aren't going to help your case. Occasionally mixing up the routine with cables and machines will indeed help.
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    Originally posted by 2demon2
    I'd agree that straight-bar curls performed with strict form are the most effective exercise for building well-proportioned biceps. Cable curls do have their place in this context, but I'd certainly designate a smaller emphasis on them.

    I would agree. Anything with significant amounts of weight, done in strict for, basic and compound form would seemingly be the most effective for overall mass, I think the majority of serious bodybuilders would agree.
  10. Doctor Science
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    Originally posted by John Benz
    YJ, not sure where you dug up trhat article, but I disagree with it entirely. I now have just under 18" arms (cold) and my bicep is probably my single best bodypart. I find the brachialis difficult to develop and hurt my elbows trying. The reverse curl hits the top of the forearm and the brachialis. Preacher curls do not engage the brachialis at all. Reverse curls with heavy weight are hard on the elbows and I had to stop.

    The single most effective excercise for a full wide biceps is the STRAIGHT bar curl. Can be hard on wrists and elbows, but hits the bicep more completely than ez-curl barl. Incline dumbell curls are super mass builders as well, and as in ALL biceps movements, strict form should be maintained to keep the shoulders, not the brachialis, from bearing the brunt of the load. I do cheat on my last rep, but that's all. Preacer curls are my 3rd favorite movement, and I use the ez-curl bar here to hit them from a little different angle.

    Cable curls have always failed to give me any pump, and if you can move your arms up enough to brush your hair after a hard workout, you aren't pumped enough!
    id have to agree with this.. cable curles never gave me much of a pump either.. i am going to try incline dumbbell curls tho..

    also what advantage does doing curls on an incline have?
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    Originally posted by John Benz
    YJ, not sure where you dug up trhat article, but I disagree with it entirely. I now have just under 18" arms (cold) and my bicep is probably my single best bodypart. I find the brachialis difficult to develop and hurt my elbows trying. The reverse curl hits the top of the forearm and the brachialis. Preacher curls do not engage the brachialis at all. Reverse curls with heavy weight are hard on the elbows and I had to stop.

    The single most effective excercise for a full wide biceps is the STRAIGHT bar curl. Can be hard on wrists and elbows, but hits the bicep more completely than ez-curl barl. Incline dumbell curls are super mass builders as well, and as in ALL biceps movements, strict form should be maintained to keep the shoulders, not the brachialis, from bearing the brunt of the load. I do cheat on my last rep, but that's all. Preacer curls are my 3rd favorite movement, and I use the ez-curl bar here to hit them from a little different angle.

    Cable curls have always failed to give me any pump, and if you can move your arms up enough to brush your hair after a hard workout, you aren't pumped enough!

    Just an article I found, agree or disagree that works for some, take it for what its worth. Its not mine.
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    Interesting article, but I have to agree with John Benz. Barbell curls work the best for me. Along with barbell curls I usually rotate in, incline curls, ez curls, dumbell curls, standing preacher curls, hammer curls, or cable curls.

    Out of the seven exercises listed above, a typical workout would normally be..

    Either barbell or Ez Curls
    Either Incline or Dumbell Curls
    Either preacher or hammer or cable curls

    Altogether doing three exercises for bis.
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    Originally posted by LakeMountD


    id have to agree with this.. cable curles never gave me much of a pump either.. i am going to try incline dumbbell curls tho..

    also what advantage does doing curls on an incline have?
    Incline curls isolate the biceps from the shoulder, and I see people all the time at my gym doing concentration curls with poor form and letting their delts do much of the work. If you can curl 50 lb dumbbells with poor form, letting the shoulders help out, you may have to cut that in half when you do inclines with strict form.

    Do not swing that dumbell back up. Let it stop fully at the bottom before you start back up. Again, much harder, but much more effective. Craig Titus added an inch onto his arms after being stuck for a couple of years, by simply lowering the weight on his db curls to allow for more reps and PERFECT form.
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    Originally posted by The Game
    Interesting article, but I have to agree with John Benz. Barbell curls work the best for me. Along with barbell curls I usually rotate in, incline curls, ez curls, dumbell curls, standing preacher curls, hammer curls, or cable curls.

    Out of the seven exercises listed above, a typical workout would normally be..

    Either barbell or Ez Curls
    Either Incline or Dumbell Curls
    Either preacher or hammer or cable curls

    Altogether doing three exercises for bis.
    My thoughts exactly.

    My workout is basically the same, rotating exercises every 2 weeks roughly. The only time I do cable curls is when I go to complete fatigue, stripping weight off the stack one at a time until I can't do any more.
  

  
 

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