With the advancements in exercise science, there is very little left to be discovered in terms of exercises to enhance muscle growth. With that said, there are still a number of unique ways in which you can increase exercise intensity to enhance growth which you probably have not tried. In this article we are going to run through some rather unconventional arm exercises which have been coupled with advanced training techniques to help you build big arms in just 5 moves.


1. SINGLE-ARM ECCENTRIC BARBELL CURL


The single-arm eccentric barbell curl is a move that may take some getting used to but it is designed to emphasize the eccentric movement as it is in this portion of the lift where the greatest potential for hypertrophy and strength development lie. By concentrating on the eccentric movement, you will overload your muscles and force more fast-twitch fibers to be used thereby placing greater stress on the muscles which in turn leads to growth. Not just that, by swopping out a dumbbell for a barbell, you will force your supinator muscles to really work hard in order to keep the barbell steady.

HOW TO DO IT:

On a preacher bench with the back of one arm resting comfortably against the bench, grab a barbell in your hand and position it at the top of the movement. Lower the barbell slowly for a duration of 4-6 seconds, pause briefly, and then lift the weight back. Try to use a weight with which you can get 3-5 reps and perform 4-6 sets.

Another way to do the exercise is to use a heavier barbell but this time lower the weight for 8 seconds, pause briefly at the bottom of the movement and then have your training partner help you lift the weight back up. In this version you concentrate solely on the negative portion of the rep.



2. ECCENTRIC REVERSE CURL


Reverse curls are typically not an exercise which most lifters utilise. This is mostly because you can’t lift very heavy, which as we know , is pertinent to muscle overload; however, the reverse curl primarily targets the brachialis muscle in the biceps. The brachialis is the muscle that lies underneath the biceps. By building the brachialis, you will push your biceps up higher which in turn will create a greater peak and size. By coupling this exercise with time under tension and focussing on the eccentric portion of the lift, and you will be placing your brachialis in the best possible position to enhance growth.


HOW TO DO IT:

Select a weight with which you will be able to perform between 4-6 reps. Hold the bar with a pronated grip and with hands slightly narrower than shoulder width. Perform a curl movement. For the concentric portion of the lift, use a 1 second tempo, pause briefly at the top of the movement and then lower the weight with a slow and steady tempo of 4-5 seconds. Make sure that you keep your elbows tight by your sides to prevent them from drifting forward. Complete 4-6 sets.

3. BENT-OVER ROPE TRICEP EXTENSIONS


The bent-over tricep extension is a great exercise to really isolate the tricep muscle while sparing your elbow joint. The trick, however, to get the very best from this exercise is to perform it as cluster sets.

Cluster sets are sets wherein you have intraset rest periods which allows you lift more weight and perform more reps. This in turn increases workload and intensity to promote muscle gain. An example of this would be instead of performing 12 reps straight; you would do 4 reps, have a short rest, perform 4 more reps, have a short rest and finally finish the set off with another 4 reps.

You could continue the set with another round or two of 4 reps in order to increase total rep range. Alternatively you can increase number of sets to enhance total workload.


HOW TO DO IT:

Fasten a rope to the upper cable on a cable machine. Stand in a split stance with your back to the machine. Grab the rope with both hands and bend forward with arms bent beside your head. This movement will target the long head of your tricep. With your elbows kept still, extend your arms forward.

Use a weight with which you can perform 12 reps with a traditional set but instead, perform 4 reps, rest 10 seconds, and then perform 4 more reps. Continue this sequence for a total of 2-3 minutes.


4. WEIGHTED DIP & LYING TRICEP EXTENSION COMBO


To finish off this gruelling workout, you are going to do a weighted dip and tricep extension combo. The weighted dip is an excellent multi-joint movement which targets the triceps, chest, shoulders and core muscles. Not just that, this move also targets all three heads of the tricep muscle.

Couple this with a lying tricep extension and you will really challenge every fibre in your triceps in order to complete the combo.


HOW TO DO IT:

Instead of doing a traditional compound set, perform the set as a giant set as follows:

  • Weighted dip – 5 reps
  • Lying tricep extension – 5 reps
  • Weighted dip – 4 reps
  • Lying tricep extension – 4 reps
  • Weighted dip – 3 reps
  • Lying tricep extension – 3 reps

Once you have completed this, rest for 2 minutes before performing your next set. Complete a total of 3 sets.

This workout is designed to challenge your arms from every angle and to recruit as many muscles fibres as possible. Perform this workout for 4-6 weeks and see your guns grow.


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