Best amount of reps for increasing bicep mass
- 01-24-2009, 06:14 PM
Best amount of reps for increasing bicep mass
Hey guys I've been doing great workouts from many sites, and super sets of course both pre and post exhausting for my biceps. Over the past 2 months they have gotten bigger, but i feel as if its not enough. I have been slamming the weight at 6 reps with perfect form, i asked a trainer at my gym and he said i should be doing 8-12 reps. Does anyone else agree or disagree? thanks alto guys
- 01-24-2009, 06:22 PM
8-12 is the consensus for mass.
the best pump i've ever gotten with biceps is doing weighted chin ups. if you can do that for 8-12 reps, you'll definitely see some growth.
01-24-2009, 06:27 PM
i think that trainer is right, I've always read in magazines that you should do high reps (10-20) if you want to gain strength and lower reps (8-12) if you want to gain size. Lower body parts would use the high end of reps.
what you should do is alternate low reps with heavy volume and high reps with low volume every 2 weeks or so to trick your muscles.
01-24-2009, 06:28 PM
thanks guys im going to try 8-12 this Monday, and suncloud i agree Ive done that before and its sick!
01-24-2009, 06:47 PM
i believe 12-20 is the best in my experience.
but more important than the rep number is the iso-tension + explosion.
explosion means a powerful contraction at the bottom of the movement to really recruit the fast twitch. the negative must also be deliberately forced on the bicep, the forearm and shoulder can take the blunt of the negative often. i like to think of the negative as stretching a rubber band which is your bicep. As the negative progresses, the rubber band is getting tighter and "storing" potential energy, such that at the bottom you can explode upwards.
iso-tension is keeping your biceps working throughout the whole set! you'll find if you do this right, along with the explosion at the bottom, you will be lifting a lot less weight for a lot less reps, but having the burn/pump of your life... not to mention soreness afterward. an example of losing tension is when u do standing barbell curls and you shift your elbows forward at the top of the movement. the biceps at that point are resting and the weight is merely hanging there until you drop down for a negative.
that's one reason I don't like to do alternating curls, since one arm is resting while the other is contracting. it's like one huge rest-pause set, which may be a good shocker, but as a staple technique prob not the best idea.
01-25-2009, 01:59 PM
01-25-2009, 02:17 PM
01-25-2009, 04:04 PM
01-25-2009, 04:54 PM
I like to mix up my biceps training. I'll usually start off with some heavy barbell curls (4 x 12, 10, 8, 6), then blast out a couple sets of heavy cheat curls for maybe 4-6 reps. Then I'll do a secondary biceps exercise such as incline DB curls for 8-10 reps.
I think switching up your training a lot is a good bet. Rarely should you ever be doing more than 12 reps for biceps. I think heavy weight with good form is the best way to go. Keep your arc wide, keep the tension on the biceps, flex your biceps as hard as you can at the top of the movement, lower the weight slowly. I use an arm blaster for my regular bar curls (not for cheat curls). Also, after your sets, flex your biceps really hard for like 20 seconds or so. You can also pronate/supinate your wrist a few times before you flex. After you done with your biceps workout, flex your biceps for about a minute. This isotension helps bring out definition, and you're making the muscle fibers you just pounded contract even more. Employing certain techniques, along with heavy weight and good form will give you great results. Also, knowing what's too much and too little helps too, but that comes with experience.
01-26-2009, 10:25 AM
01-26-2009, 10:28 AM
I have been told by certain trainers that you should do the heaviest amount you can (while still keeping form) for 4 - 6.........now I pretty much always stick to 8 - 12 personally though.
Can you guys fill me in as to why some would say a lower amount? Just curious.
01-26-2009, 11:18 AM
lower amount of reps will help increase strength, and makeing your muscles more of a hard look then a soft flabby look ya kno, biceps best workouts ive gotten
Chin ups (weighted or non) 3 sets to failure
Incline DB Curl 3x 8-12 reps
Standing barbell curl (ez curl bar) 3x8-12 reps
Concentration curls3x 8-12 reps
Ive never had my bis get stronger and grow as fast as now very happy with my results
01-26-2009, 11:27 AM
variation I think is key, your body tends to adapt to stimulus that stays the same. but 8-12 area should be maximal growth, some people do better with either lower or higher.
02-04-2009, 02:31 AM
8-12 reps is the best for mass. Focus on your exercises as well, dont be redundant. Straight bar curls are excellent for hitting the bicep overall, hammer curls for the outer part of the bi, concentration or one arm dumbell curls on the precher will help to get the inner bi flaring if you do them keeping the pinky finger the highest throughout the movement. Finish with cable curls to hit the bicep peak.
02-04-2009, 12:00 PM
id say 8 reps i always do 2-3 sets of 8 on barbell curls, cable curls preacher curls. lifts such as drag curls etc.. i like 12-20 for a great pump
02-05-2009, 01:58 PM
8-12 is usually the general consensus but at the same time i believe it is important to switch your sets and reps so your body does not get to comfortable with one type of set and rep. Good luck!
02-05-2009, 08:26 PM
I've gotten good results from mixing power training and strict isolation work. For instance, if I'm working the biceps, I'll start with some heavy barbell curls, for maybe 3-4 sets @ maybe 10,8, 8, 6, then a couple sets of heavy cheat curls where I add a decent amount of weight to what I was just curling (strict) and bust out a few reps (usually 4-6). I make sure to cheat only enough to complete the rep. While I'm doing some cheating, I'm making my biceps work as hard as possible, past the point where they could move a weight with strict form. Then I'll do a strict exercise where I can really concentrate on my biceps contracting so that I get every single muscle fiber involved! So my biceps workout might look like this:
Barbell Curls (with an arm blaster) x 3 @ 10, 8, 8
Heavy Cheat Curls x 2 @ 4-6
Incline DB Curls x 3 @ 8-10
I might switch out incline DB curls for preacher curls one week, or maybe one arm concentration curls, cable curls, or some other biceps exercise. And sometimes I'll do three or four exercises with only one set per exercise, or maybe two exercises with two sets each. I like to keep my total number of sets for biceps 9 or less, but make those few sets be really intense. So I'm mixing heavy and light weights together. Also, I make sure to flex a lot between sets.
02-05-2009, 08:38 PM
I will have to say a nice blend of heavy and light sets. that way you gain strength and you can apply that to your high rep sets.
02-09-2009, 02:59 PM
Also, breathing is very important. I usually exhale while curling the barbell up (contraction) and inhale while lowering it. Some people do the opposite, though.
I also read an article in a fitness mag. It said that for your biceps to grow, you have to work your bigger muscles, such as your pecs, hamstrings, quads. The reason behind this being that when your hormones signal muscle growth, the growth applies to ALL muscles. It's more effective to release that growth hormone through targeting big muscle groups such as the ones described above...
02-09-2009, 03:49 PM
4-8 upper body
6-12 lower body
On average thats how i do my work sets.
Sometimes the reps are less, but not usually more.
my two pennies. enjoy.
02-17-2009, 02:35 AM
Start off with some heavy CHEAT barbell curls like 10 8 6 3 on rep sets. I dont even get to caught up in the reps really as long as what Im doing is very hard and to failure. Then I do CHEAT hammer curls, then CHEAT non-alternating dumbell curls. Notice a theme? Then finally I get into my strcit form sets. I dont do any concentration curls. And usually finish with cables.
I take much ctriticism in my bicep training cause I cheat so much. I dont care what they say though. I also trian mine with many sets I can easily devote a whole day 45mins to just biceps. I know they are small muscles and most peoples wont respond to this kind of abuse. You have to see what the norm is and what all research points too, BUT then find what works for YOU! Take some advice but dont listen to the haters!
Ok Im getting worked up haha.
02-17-2009, 08:55 PM
I mix high and low reps. My bicep routine is:
Hammer curls 3x4-6
Single arm preachers 3x6-9
BB curls 8-12
My bi's continue to get stronger and thicker every week.
02-22-2009, 05:19 PM
02-22-2009, 05:28 PM
depends on what you do the rest of the week. back day generally also hits bis. you can probably get away with a total of 3x a week on bis as since they are a smaller muscle they tend to recover fast
02-22-2009, 06:05 PM
the general consensus to me is that everyone responds to different training. plus your diet is more important. maybe you have your diet in check for when you weighed 150 for example...but you put on 10 lbs and now your arms wont grow because you're still eating like you weighted 150 instead of 160.
plus are you squatting, deadlifting, and doing all the compound movements. you're body grows proportionally...if your quads and larger muscles arent growing, your bi's and tri's will plateau too
02-22-2009, 07:47 PM
On top of all the great advice so far, I would add to not neglect your triceps. Having a full and well developed triceps will help your biceps and arms as a whole standout.
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02-23-2009, 09:30 AM
02-23-2009, 09:31 AM
yeah, geez i forgot that one the tricep accounts for more than half of the volume of your upper arm, close to 2/3 of it. so a larger tri makes for a larger looking bi
02-23-2009, 11:44 AM
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