4. Overhead Extensions – The Triceps Killer
Another great exercise to help build bigger arms!
This one specifically, as the majority of the stress applied to the triceps is on the long-head.
Furthermore, just like the Tate press this exercise focuses on activating the functionality of the triceps – i.e. forearm extension.
How to: Sit down on a bench with back support holding the dumbbell with both hands. Extend your arms upwards and position it completely overhead.
Lower the dumbbell slowly behind your head. Make sure that you keep your elbows steady. Lower the dumbbell until you feel the strongest stretch on the muscle or just as the dumbbell is about to touch your neck (do not rest the dumbbell on your neck).
When coming back up remember to not lock your arms to avoid unnecessary stress on your elbow joints.
Really focus on that muscle-mind connection. Imagine how you are using the long head of the triceps to move the weight. I know, it sounds bizarre but it really helps reap the full benefit from exercise.
The same goes for the exercises listed above.
5. Skullcrushers – The Secret to Big Arms
The last exercise on the list is a classic.
You’re probably going to see this one in most articles related to building bigger arms and for a good reason – it works.
Contrary to popular belief, skullcrusher’s actually a single-joint exercise – isolating the triceps as the main movement here is forearm extension.
Similar to overhead extensions, skullcrushers target the triceps by focusing most of the stress on your long head and some on the lateral.
Depending on how you lower the bar.
Keep reading. You’ll get what I mean.
How to: Sit down on a flat bench with the barbell rested on your legs.
The bar can either be E-Z or a straight one depending on the grip. The E-Z bar will allow for more concentrated stress on the triceps, so I would naturally recommend using it over the straight bar.
Lay down on the bench and raise the barbell at shoulder level by holding the bar at shoulder width. This is your starting position.
Keep your upper arms stationary and begin lowering the weight by flexing your elbow – imagine that you are aiming for your head.
I think that there is no need for me to point this out, but I feel like I have to. Make sure that you have the weight under control. If you notice that you’re struggling with it too much, don’t risk it. They call it a skullcrusher for a reason – if you drop the weight it will go straight to your face.
When coming back up do not fully extend your elbows to avoid unnecessary elbow joint stress.
If you want to add more focus on the long head of the triceps then consider doing behind the head skullcrusher.
The execution is similar. However instead of lowering the bar towards your face you lower it behind your head as you are laying down. Do not extend the bar to the same starting position as you with the traditional skullcrushers but rather raise it above your head.
Remember, throughout the execution of the exercise you want to move just your elbows (extension and flexion) to ensure that you are targeting the triceps’ function.
What I would recommend is switching between the two forms.
This will help better isolate the lateral head (traditional) and the long head (behind the head). Thus, ensure you benefit the most from the exercise and move one step closer to building bigger arms.