Results for HOW TO GET BICEPS
What's up, guys? Jeff Cavaliere, ATHLEANX.com. Today I’m going to tell you how to get your biceps to start growing a lot faster. It doesn’t necessarily involve a lot of this. I know you guys know I’m a fan of heavy barbell curls and utilizing a cheat curl to overload the eccentric, but we know that’s only one mechanism of creating overload. We know that there are a lot of other ways to do that. What I’m going to tell you here is, you’re going to want to trade in that bar for this bar if you’re looking for faster gains. I’m going to tell you the reason for that, because there is a very distinct reason for that, but it’s going to require that you don’t just do a chin-up because there are some issues with a chin-up – my favorite exercise – when it comes to bicep development. There’s a way to change the chin-up if you want to enhance or speed up that bicep development and it requires a few modifications. So, here’s what we do. The first thing is, obviously, with a chin-up we’re going with an underhand grip. But we need to look at how wide that grip needs to be and, more importantly, how wide the grip is in relation to the elbows. Anatomically we have something called the ‘carrying angle of the elbow’. The carrying angle is in place to allow us to carry something at our sides and not interfere with the locomotion of the legs. So, we know that the angle, if you look at the upper arm, comes down and veers a little bit to the outside. So, if we have something in our hands it wouldn’t hit the legs, as I’ve said. Well, when we curl our arm up when we train our biceps and bring our elbow into flexion here, the same thing happens here. The arm doesn’t go straight up, or even inward. It goes a little bit to the outside of the shoulder. So, what we want to do is be able to mimic that so we can maximally target the biceps. So, when we get to the bar and take an underhand grip, we want to make sure the elbows are more inward in relation to the hands. Hands outside the elbows. We can’t manipulate this. Once we grab a bar it’s fixed. We can’t change that. If we had a dumbbell, we could change a dumbbell in space as we curl it, but here we can’t. So, we have to set it up that way. The next thing we want to do is, we’ve talked about this tip before, of involving the biceps more by deactivating the forearms. We can do that by bending back the wrists a little bit. Now, be careful when you do this. You want to make sure you’re not just gripping the outer fingers because that could lead to some medial elbow pain that we’ve talked about before. So, you want to grip the bar, you just rotate backward. Just like this. Grip it in the palm, grip it in the palm, rotate backward, your hands are outside your elbows. Now as you start to curl, this is where all the difference is made. When I curl up to the top here you don’t want to collapse yourself down. People talk about getting the chin over the bar, but what that’s really referencing is your chin higher than the bar. Not necessarily over the bar this was because when you close down that angle you take a lot of the stress off the bicep and that’s something that’s going to take away from the effectiveness of what we’re trying to do here. We know if I took a dumbbell and curled it all the way to the top, all the way to where it was touching my shoulder here, I could stay here for a hell of a lot longer than I could if I backed it off 10 or 20 degrees, kept more of an angle here. And therefore, more stress from the force of gravity downward onto that dumbbell, onto my biceps, which is what we’re trying to get. So why do we do the same thing here? We want to keep that angle open. So, as we come up to the top, we keep the distance. That distance is key. That distance makes a huge difference in what we’re going to get from this exercise. So not closing down but keeping that distance. The fourth thing I do is start to lean my body back a little bit because the motion is not even straight up and down, but it’s this. Up, and towards it. Lean back a little bit, come up, and toward it, never closing that angle down anymore than that. But you’re basically curling your body. If had a curl bar down here I’d be going in an arc. If I’m taking my body here with my fixed hands, I have to arc my body. So, it looks like this. I’m down, in here, up, I come a little bit closer. Down and away, up and closer. Sown and away, up and closer. Just like that. You can see it’s putting a number on those biceps. Now why does this work so well? We talked about an alternative mechanism to overload. We talked about eccentric muscle damage being one of those options, but we also talked about progressive overload. You’ll be shocked at how much this will overload your biceps in a novel, and unique way because if you’re used to just curling dumbbells or curling a barbell, you’re likely not even getting as much stress on your biceps as this is going to do. If you weight 180lbs, some of it’s going to be unweighted by your lats. We know that, but a great deal of it is going to be born by the biceps, especially after you make these modifications. That might equate to 120lb load and you’re used to curling 100lbs on a curl but are unable to curl a 120lb weight. It’s the ability to manipulate your bodyweight in space here that allows you to work with those strength curves and how they adjust along the path of this exercise that will allow you to start performing this with a heavier load. And therefore start to see results you haven’t seen from doing the other exercises that don’t involve this. The final point I’ll make on this is, as a progressively overloaded exercise, what you would do is add weight when able. If you can do 10 or 12 or 14 of these without a challenge, it’s time to start adding more weight. You guys know I’m a big fan of this, even working up to 3 plates on a weighted chin. The fact of the matter is, you need to make sure you’re always challenging yourself. But when you make these modifications, I promise you, you’re going to see faster gains in your biceps than you ever have before. If you’ve found this video helpful leave your comments and thumbs up below. Let me know what else you want me to cover and I’ll do my best to do that for you. If you’re looking for step by step plans that, at times, we incorporate bodyweight as a resistance option because we know it’s the best option for what we’re trying to accomplish. We work them all in with all our barbell and dumbbell exercises as well. They’re all over at ATHLEANX.com. In the meantime, if you haven’t already, please subscribe and turn on your notifications so you never miss a video when we put one out. All right, guys. Talk to you again soon.
What's up, guys? Jeff Cavaliere, ATHLEANX.com. So, you’re having trouble building your biceps? You’ve come to me, and my video. I think I can help you. I’m not really sure, but I think I can help you. Guys, I’ve got to be honest with you here. That’s a joke because honestly, when I was younger my biceps were my biggest trouble spot. I didn’t have big arms. It was through my perseverance and wanting to build bigger biceps that I made a whole hell of a lot of mistakes, but I ultimately wound up being able to build decent sized arms because of that. So, what I want to do is help you today. I know why yours aren’t growing and I’m going to help you fix that. First, when we get into the different aspects of training your biceps I like to think there are mechanical things you’re doing wrong. Literally, how you’re lifting the dumbbell, and when you’re twisting, and if you’re raising your arm up or not to get complete bicep contraction. I made a video on that, and I’m going to link that right here to show you what it looks like. I’m going to link it again at the end of the video because I want you to see that. I cover five mechanical flaws that you’re making. You’re going to want to see that. Today I’m going to tell you the two things you’re probably doing wrong that are definitely holding you back – beside your arms, again, I know because I’ve witnessed this myself, first hand – is your training frequency. Secondly, your lack of variation of bicep training techniques. First of all, as far as training frequency goes, you have to understand that the biceps are pretty limited in terms of their function. They supinate the forearm like this. You can see the bicep will activate just by doing that. Most importantly they flex the elbow. That’s their biggest driver and function, is to flex the elbow like this because of their attachment from here, down. They pull, they pull the elbow up. They also have the ability to get a little bit of shoulder flexion because of the longhead’s attachment up in the top here of the glenohumeral joint. So, we can get a little bit of that, too. Because of that, you have to realize that any time you’re bending your elbow in any exercise you do, on your pull day, any back exercise, chin-ups, rows, inverted rows, one-armed rows; anything you’re doing, you’re working your biceps. Your biceps are an incredibly small muscle, believe it or not, only occupying a very small portion of the anterior side of your arm. Too much volume here, and too many times hitting them in a week is going to be too much. A lot of times, guys, if you’re training a push-pull leg system, and you’re training each function twice a week, if you throw any direct bicep work in on top of that you’re truly hitting your biceps three times in that week and not giving them enough time to recuperate. It’s not about protein synthesis every 48 hours. It’s literally about giving that muscle group a chance to recover and get back to being able to be stimulated again in a meaningful way. Not just to coast through another half-assed workout, but in a meaningful way that leads to progressive overload. That is where we jump off into the second point. When we’re talking about progressive overload, again, go back to the function of the biceps. Their limitation in what they do. We’re talking about a hinge joint here. If we were talking about the shoulders, that’s a ball and socket joint. Meaning, my exercise variety for shoulders is a lot more than what we have for biceps. In terms of the fact that they look completely different. A press looks different than a side-lateral raise, looks different from a front raise, looks different from rear delt raises. We have lots of different angles and planes that we work in because of the variety of the movement that the three-dimensional ball and socket joint provides. The hinge joint of the elbow dramatically limits our options to a lot of different curls. Period. You’re curling with dumbbells, you’re curling with a barbell, you’re curling with a concentration curl, you’re curling with a spider curl; you’re freaking curling no matter what you’re doing, guys. You’re curling. The thought that you could simply change bicep exercises to create new overload, realizing once again that they’re all basically formed around the same movement here at the elbow is not going to work. Not mention the fact that most of our bicep exercises are pretty limited, in terms of the ability we have to continue to add weight to them. Ask yourself the last time you actually increased the amount of weight you’ve used on dumbbell curls. If you have, how much have you really increased? Progressive overload, and overload in, and of itself is pretty difficult to achieve. You need to do something dramatically different. And that is, vary the way in which you’re doing your curls. So, let me show you a few different ways you could do that. The first thing I like to cover here is one I called “Sliced Reps”. I take a weight I can normally use for 15 reps and perform a curl all the way to the top. When I come down I drop down 1/9 of the way. You don’t have to get out your compass or going out and figuring out what that is. Literally, just drop it an estimated 1/9 of the way, and come back up to the top, and contract. Then drop down a little more, then come back to the top. Then a little bit more and come back to the top. So, through nine levels here it takes you to get all the way to the bottom of the curl. Then you come all the way back up to the top, then you divide it, and slice it into 8 pieces. Then you come back down, then you drop it, and you now slice it into 7 pieces. Ultimately, until you get down to your last two where you’re going down halfway, then come back up to the top, all the way down, and your last rep is one, full rep. Now, what is happening here? We’re increasing our volume within a set. We’re increasing the number of contractions we get here. We’re spending a lot more time in the contracted position of the curl because we keep coming back to it on every slice. We’re increasing the time under tension throughout the course of this set. Again, although the range of motion is abbreviated in a single rep, you’re still getting full range of motion as you go from top to bottom throughout the course of this dropping ladder here. The fact is, this is a way to intensify the curl. That is going to be how you’ll increase your muscle mass, by doing your biceps workouts again. You’re adding a way to progressively overload through some stimulus that you haven’t felt before, as opposed to just saying “I’m going to do a different form of a curl today.” It’s not enough to just go exercise to exercise. We don’t have to just use that technique though. We have other things here, like our arc variation. With an arc variation we know that the moment arm can be changed. If we stand here like I am, using a long movement, we keep our forearms straight as long as possible, and our elbows are just a little bit at the front side of our ribcage, we know we have a big, long arc. A long moment arm for the biceps that make that weight feel extremely heavy and put a great challenge on the biceps. But we don’t have to stop at that point. As we get fatigued and tired we can bring our elbows in to the sides now, instead of in front of our ribcage. Now, tucked in toward our sides and we continue to curl. We’ve shortened that moment arm, effectively lightening that weight in our hands to allow us to keep going. Then we can drop our arms back even more, even into this drag curl variation that really shortens the moment arm on the biceps. Not only that, it changes the strength curve of the exercise, so the hard part isn’t in the middle of the exercise, but actually here, at the peak contraction of the exercise. So, we’re able to take failure and extend it further, and further, and further, intensifying the curl. Again, it’s all curls. But we’ve intensified that, and that’s going to lead to bigger biceps in the long run because you’ve gotten too stale with the fact that you haven’t utilized enough of these techniques. I’ll give you one more here. It’s actually one we use called intensity. The intensity style here is, you’re actually trying to increase the amount of productive reps you’re doing with a bit of a heavier weight now. What we do is take an exercise and go to failure in about five, to six rep range. Then we rest pause for 10 seconds. We don’t put the weight down. We just rest pause. You’ll see that, guess what? After about 10, or 15 seconds you can crank out another three reps. That’s enough time to rest and get out another three reps. Then you rest again 10 to 15 seconds, and then you go for another three reps. Then you’re maybe going for two reps. Then ultimately, you’re going down in singles. But if you do this for a five minute period of time, when you accumulate the number of high intensity reps that you did in this one five minute set, and the number of reps you did with this heavier weight; it’s going to be more than you likely did when you broke your sets up into the tradition three sets of 12 style. Again, using a heavier weight anyway to get into this five to six rep range, and you’re accumulating more of those heavy reps. So, no matter what style you’re looking for, heavier or lighter weights, 15 rep maxes, or five to six rep maxes, the key is this: it’s not the exercise variation, guys. It’s the variation of the intensity techniques you’re using on those exercises that will matter the most. As far as frequency goes, if anything, dial it back and see how you do. I promise you, you’ll probably see a better result from doing that than you are adding more, and more workouts. Guys, I hope this was helpful to you. If you’re looking for a program where we put it all in one complete step by step system, I actually created something called our Ultimate Arms program. That’s available over at ATHLEANX. Guys, it’s not just arm training. We train athletes here. It’s a whole entire program, but it has a specialization for arms that helps you overcome all the mistakes I made. Not just the ones I point out here. Everything I think that will help you get better arms in the long run. Guys, that’s over at ATHLEANX.com. In the meantime, if you’ve found the video helpful leave your comments and thumbs up. Let me know what you want me to cover and I’ll do my best to do that for you in the days and weeks ahead. See you.
What's up, guys? Jeff Cavaliere, ATHLEANX.com. Today I want to show you guys how to build bigger biceps because that's one of the areas I think I've got down pretty good. The fact is, it's because I did try to learn how to train my biceps at a younger age. Yes, I admit it. I wanted to get bigger arms when I was a kid. Like everybody else did. But I learned some of the things I had to do. More importantly, some of the things I was doing wrong. When it comes to bicep training – really, when it comes to any muscle – when we're talking about trying to build the muscle bigger you really have to look for ways to make the exercises you're doing more inefficient. Meaning, you need to make the muscle you're trying to get bigger, do the work. Now, if we're talking about strength, it's the direct opposite. We want to allow muscles that assist in the action – let's say, pulling – to assist so we can lift more weight. However, when it comes to bicep training, going for size, you need to make sure the bicep is doing the work and not the forearm. Because of its proximity – literally, just a little more distal down the arm from the bicep – the forearm is also going to want to flex. It's going to want to pull. It's going to want to take whatever weight you're holding in your hand and bring it closer. Therefore, taking away some of the activity of the bicep. That is going to prevent you from building bigger biceps, or at least as big as they could be. I've talked about this before. I called it the Master Tip. As a matter of fact, I made a whole video on it, if you haven't seen that. I even talked about this particular tip way back when, in the early days of YouTube. You can see that video here, just give me some slack because I could barely talk to the camera. But the fact is, we need to make sure we get this out of it. So how do we do that? Well, I talked about making sure that your wrists are sort of bent back. There are a couple of ways to make sure you do it and do it right. So, you don’t put undue stress on either your wrist or your elbow. But you can try something that would show you how to do this visually that's going to get this right every time. You take a single dumbbell; you're going to put your hands underneath it like this. The goal is, you want to make sure you're viewing the top of this dumbbell at all times. Meaning, it's going to be parallel to the ceiling above you, and the bottom of it to the floor below you the entire time you curl. So, what we do is grab underneath like this and we're going to hold it up like that. You can see that makes the biceps pop out pretty damn good because I've taken the forearm contribution and minimized it. All the elbow flexion is coming straight from the biceps' activity. So here I am, at this point. Now I lower it down, I just keep it flat, all the way. Which means I'm going to address my wrist as I go. I come up, keeping that totally parallel. That means the wrists are going to bend back automatically at the top. And down. And up. Just like that. Hold and squeeze. You will feel what I'm talking about when it comes to instituting this dead wrist. The Master Tip. So now, you feel that. How do you implement it? Once you get an idea for what it feels like – I don’t care if you're doing a curl right here with an easy curl bar. You grab it and then you set the wrist back a bit. But you don’t get it down here in your fingers. Never do you want to execute any bicep exercises down here, in your fingers. When you do, I've talked about it before, all that weight, distally in these fingers, places too much of an overload on the tendons that meet right here at the medial elbow. That causes a lot of undue stress and strain that can lead to golfer's elbow. Medial epicondylitis. Not fun. You grip it deep in your hands, but when you do, you just bend them back. Now, as I lift and curl this up, I'm going to curl up and at the top it's there. But it's deep in the hands. It's not stressing my wrist. As a matter of fact, it's sitting over my wrist joint at the top. That bar is almost right through the wrist joint. Supported. And down. So, it looks like that. Down, up, keep those wrists out of it. Keep those forearms out of it. We can come over here – you guys know how much of a fan I am of chin-ups for building bigger biceps. You're going to do it, and you're going to do it better if you implement the same idea when you're up here. You don’t just go this way. The tendency is, again, the body knows 'pull'. Especially if you're doing weighted chin-ups. You're going to want to really pull so everything is going to participate. You're going to be pulling like that and wrist curling yourself up the bar in an attempt to try and get up there. Again, what you do is just try to initiate by getting those wrists bent backward. Deep into the hand. Not here. Deep in, wrap, and back. Deep in, wrap, and back. From here, come down, lift, keep the tension on, I don't come up all the way over the bar and close down that angle too much. I keep it here, come down, up, and down. Up, and down. Finally, if I were to come over here, we talked about other exercise options that create an addition of, not just supination and not just elbow flexion, but shoulder flexion. We know a complete bicep contraction happens with elbow flexion, supination, and shoulder flexion. We've got that high cable curl up here. We do the same thing. When I'm here, in this position, the tendency if I go too heavy is to do this and then curl. And you'll find yourself doing that. You're going to curl. Like that. Curl. That is exactly, again, you can see the forearm muscles here doing a lot of that work there, on the inside, to try and do that. As opposed to just letting that stay dead and letting the biceps do the work. So, for a high curl you get in this position here, wrists back, and let all the work be done with the biceps in this position here. You'll really feel the difference when you implement that. So, it's understanding the difference between training for strength on a movement, and training for hypertrophy. When you do, and you're trying to get your biceps to be bigger, this is going to work every, single time. The reason why it works is because you're getting rid of those compensations and substitutions, and you're making the biceps do the work. You're making the movement more inefficient for the end goal being hypertrophy. Guys, I hope you've found the video helpful. Make sure you apply this. Again, if you haven't tried it yet, just start with that dumbbell. Do that curl first to feel what I'm talking about, and then you'll be able to institute the same thing, recreate that feeling on whatever bicep exercise you do. If you're looking for programs that build in next level training tips, techniques that take advantage of muscle science; we have them over at ATHLEANX.com. Choose that program that's best suited to your goals right now, and I promise it will get you to where you want to be. In the meantime, if you've found the video helpful leave your comments and thumbs up below. Let me know what else you want me to cover and I'll do my best to do that for you. If you haven't already done so, make sure you click 'subscribe' and turn on your notifications, so you never miss a video when we put one out. All right, guys. See you again soon.