If a gym bro had to choose between an orgasm and a bicep pump, he’d probably pick the latter. A bro waits for the arms day every week in hopes that he’ll walk away with at least an inch added to his arms.
You’ll see people missing leg days or even back days but you’ll never see someone intentionally skipping training their biceps. Even though the gym rats shower so much love on their guns, you won’t see many people walking around with jacked arm in your gym.
While many gym noobs think that the problem with their arms is that they aren’t training them enough, the real problem lies in how they’ve been training. In most cases, the problem doesn’t lie in quantity but the quality of their workouts.
In this article, we’ll go over the little tweaks you need to make in your bicep training techniques that will give you insane results. Warning – you might not be able to scrub your back after following these tips.
8 Tips For Gaining Bicep Size
Exercises, Volume & Intensity
For starters, let’s get done with the exercises, volume, and intensity debate. There is no doubt that your workouts should have a mix of compound lifts like the barbell and dumbbell curls, and isolation exercises like the cable and concentration curls.
If you’ve been doing a mix of three compound and two isolation exercises in your arm workout but are not seeing any results, it’s time to try something new. You should try alternating between compound bicep arm workout on odd weeks and isolation workouts on even weeks.
When it comes to volume and intensity, we recommend hitting failure on every set and exercise. Don’t worry about overtraining your arms. If you’re unhappy with your arm gains, chances are you’re nowhere close to overtraining your muscles.
Use Bigger Grips
Forearms are one of the most overlooked aspects of bicep training. You can’t have muscular biceps without strong forearms. While thin bars can save the manufacturing companies money, they don’t add anything to your bottom line.
Bar grip accessories like Fat Gripz can make the barbells rounder and thicker. Thicker bars can be harder to grab and hold onto which can put additional tensions on your biceps. The curling exercises can get harder on the eccentric part of the movement while using fatter grips.
As you perform the bicep exercises using thicker grips, your biceps will be put under increasing tension as your forearms begin to fatigue. Perform one bicep exercise with the fat grips at the starting of the workout or perform one set of each exercise using the grips to annihilate your pythons.
Be The Odd One Out
If you’re someone who does 8/10/12 reps of every exercise, you’re a part of the majority of the gym population. Most of us have been using this rep scheme without ever questioning it. It’s something we have been taught the moment we step inside a weight room.
Your goal with your new rep structure would be to add three reps to every set. Performing sets of 11/13/15 reps would add a significant amount of volume to your workouts which is perfect to shock your arms into growing.
Train Your Biceps From All Angles
Most people forget biceps are called biceps for a reason. Your biceps are made up of two muscles – the short and long head. You can’t expect both these heads to develop if you hit them from a single angle.
While training with a barbell, make sure you do one set each with a shoulder-wide grip, a wider-than shoulder-width grip, and a narrow grip. Similarly, using an EZ-bar can add much-needed variation to your training regime. Changing your hand placement on the bars will help polish your guns.
Disrupt The Preacher Bench
Look at the preacher bench in your gym and you’ll probably find a dude hunched over the arm pad and swinging back and forth to lift the weights. Using momentum on an isolation lift won’t do you any good.
Instead of sitting straight on the preacher bench, turn your body sideways and place your right arm on the arm pad so your right elbow and both shoulders are in a straight line. Sitting sideways will eliminate any possibility of using momentum. You could perform this variation on a preacher curl bench, machine, or even an incline bench.
Turn Your Wrists
If we got a penny every time we saw someone half-assing through dumbbell curls, we’d have enough to buy a Bitcoin. Get this, the degree of wrist rotation while performing the dumbbell curls is directly proportional to your bicep gains.
At the top of a dumbbell curl, your pinky finger should be outside your shoulder. If your palms are facing your shoulders flat, you are not squeezing your pythons enough for you to be able to develop the peak.
Add Advanced Training Techniques To The Mix
If you’re expecting extra-ordinary results but are doing the ordinary exercises, you’re just wasting your time. You have to throw new things at your muscles constantly to keep them guessing.
Using advanced training techniques like drop-sets, supersets, BFR (blood flow restriction) training, intra-set stretching, GVTs are a great way to spice up your workouts and make those pythons grow.
Adding these advanced training techniques will also make sure your workouts never get boring. You could try one new technique in every workout or perform a set of different advanced techniques in every exercise.
Perform Partial Reps
By partial reps, we don’t mean an incomplete range of motion. Since your guns are long muscles, you should train them in different ranges to optimally develop the length and the peak of the biceps.
21s are an incredibly effective exercise to target the long and short heads of the biceps. You don’t have to limit yourself to 21s. You could perform 24s, 27s, or 30s in the same rep scheme.
Don’t Forget Nutrition & Recovery
No matter how hard you train or how much you can curl, you need to remember that you break down muscle while you are training. Your muscles grow back bigger and stronger only when you’re meeting your daily nutrient requirement and are giving your muscles enough time to rest and recuperate from your workouts.