Men’s Health

50 Best Arm Exercises for Building Strength and Definition

If you need to construct the muscle tissues in your arm effectively, you will want a multi-faceted method to concentrating on the triceps, biceps, forearms, and shoulders. The finest arm exercises for strength and measurement positive aspects embrace a mixture of compound and focused help exercises–along with incorporating the correct quantity of reps and sets. 

We rounded up the 50 finest arm exercises that problem the smaller, oft-overlooked muscle tissues in addition to the primary movers. 

Related: 50 Best Chest Exercises of 2023

Best Arm Exercises With Step-by-Step Instructions

1. Hammer Curl

How to do it:

  1. Hold a dumbbell in every hand with palms dealing with your sides and arms prolonged straight down. 
  2. Keeping your higher arms towards your sides, curl each weights on the identical time, minimizing momentum used through the curl.

2. Dip

How to do it:

  1. Use dip bars, if obtainable, or place your palms on a bench, chair, or on the ground as you lengthen your legs in entrance of you.
  2. Lower your body till your higher arms are parallel to the ground, however no decrease. 
  3. Extend your elbows to return up.

3. Close-grip Curl

How to do it:

  1. Curl together with your fingers inside shoulder width, in the midst of the bar. 

4. Chinup

How to do it:

  1. Grab the bar at (or barely inside) shoulder width, with a supinated grip.
  2. While conserving your core tight, pull your self up till your chin is over the bar.
  3. Try to not use momentum to get your chin over the bar. 

5. Suspension Trainer Triceps Extension


How to do it:

  1. Lengthen the straps and stand beneath the suspension coach’s anchor level.
  2. Lean your weight ahead and bend your elbows so you’re feeling a stretch in your triceps.
  3. Your palms ought to face one another behind your head.
  4. Keeping your body straight and abs braced, lengthen elbows, rotating palms so that they face down whereas prolonged.

6. Diamond Pushup

How to do it:

  1. Get right into a pushup place however place your fingers shut collectively so your thumbs and index fingers contact.
  2. Keeping your body in a straight line with abs braced, decrease your torso till your chest is simply above the ground, then press again up.

7. Neutral-grip Triceps Extension


How to do it:

  1. Lie again on a bench or the ground holding a dumbbell in every hand with palms dealing with one another.
  2. Press the weights over your chest, then bend your elbows to decrease the weights towards your face till you’re feeling a stretch in your triceps.
  3. Extend your elbows.
  4. Keep your elbows dealing with the ceiling the whole set.

8. Poundstone Curl

How to do it:

  1. Grasp the barbell at shoulder width.
  2. Keeping your higher arms at your sides, curl the bar.

9. Suspension Trainer Rotational Inverted Row


How to do it:

  1. Hold the handles and lean again with arms prolonged in order that your body is supported by the suspension coach and solely your toes are on the ground.
  2. Brace your core and maintain your body in a straight line. (The decrease you set the handles, the tougher the exercise; you may elevate your toes to make it much more troublesome.)
  3. Start together with your palms dealing with your toes, and as you row your body up, twist your wrists out so your palms face up within the high place.

10. Suspension Trainer Biceps Curl


How to do it:

  1. Face the coach’s attachment level and grasp the handles with palms dealing with up.
  2. Lean again together with your abs braced, body straight, and arms prolonged in entrance of you.
  3. Curl your body as much as the handles.

11. Close-grip Pushup

How to do it:

  1. Place your fingers inside shoulder width and decrease your body till your chest is about an inch above the ground.
  2. To improve the problem, elevate your toes on a bench or field.

12. Behind-the-Back Cable Curl


How to do it:

  1. Attach a D-handle to the low pulley of a cable machine, grasp the deal with in your left hand, and step ahead (away from the machine) till there’s pressure on the cable and your arm is drawn barely behind your body.
  2. Stagger your toes so your proper leg is in entrance.
  3. Curl the deal with however don’t permit your elbow to level ahead.

13. EZ-Bar Preacher Curl

How to do it:

  1. Sit at a preacher bench and regulate the height in order that your armpits contact the highest of the bench.
  2. Grasp an EZ-curl bar at shoulder width with arms prolonged (however permit a slight bend on the elbows).
  3. Curl the bar, conserving the backs of your arms towards the bench.
  4. Take three seconds to decrease the bar again down.

14. Reverse Curl

How to do it:

  1. Grasp the bar overhand at no matter width is snug.
  2. Keeping your higher arms towards your sides, curl the bar.

15. Wide-grip Curl

How to do it:

  1. Grasp the bar with fingers wider than shoulder width—in the event you’re utilizing an Olympic bar, your pinkies needs to be on the outdoors knurling.
  2. Perform curls.

16. Overhead Press

How to do it:

  1. Set the bar up in a squat rack or cage, and grasp it simply outdoors shoulder width.
  2. Take the bar off the rack and maintain it at shoulder stage together with your forearms vertical. Squeeze the bar and brace your abs.
  3. Press the bar overhead, pushing your head ahead and shrugging your traps on the high of the motion.

17. Pullover/Triceps Extension


How to do it:

  1. Hold the bar with an overhand, shoulder-width grip whereas mendacity on a flat bench.
  2. Press the bar towards the ceiling after which attain it again over your head whereas bending your elbows till you’re feeling a stretch in your lats.
  3. Then pull the bar again over your chest and lengthen your elbows. That’s one rep.

18. Conventional Curl

How to do it:

  1. Grasp bar with a closed supinated grip at barely wider than shoulder width with toes shoulder-width aside.
  2. The bar needs to be in entrance of thighs with elbows prolonged down.
  3. Flex elbows to maneuver the bar towards shoulders.
  4. Keep higher arms stationary and knees barely bent.
  5. When the bar is near shoulders, let elbows transfer again to the beginning place.

19. Triceps Pushdown

How to do it:

  1. Attach a rope deal with to the highest pulley of a cable station and maintain an finish in every hand with elbows flexed.
  2. Allow your elbows to float ahead a bit as you lengthen them after which allow them to drift backward as you decrease the weight.

20. Decline Triceps Extension


How to do it:

  1. Set an adjustable bench to a slight decline (round 30 levels) and lie on it with a dumbbell in every hand.
  2. Hold the weights over your chest, palms dealing with one another.
  3. Bend your elbows and decrease the weights to the edges of your head.
  4. Choose a weight you are able to do 12 reps with on the primary set, and use it for each set.

21. Close-grip Bench Press

How to do it:

  1. Grasp the bar together with your index fingers on the within fringe of the knurling (the tough a part of the bar).
  2. Arch your again so there’s area between your decrease again and the bench.
  3. Pull the bar off the rack and decrease it to your sternum, tucking your elbows about 45 levels to your sides.
  4. When the bar touches your body, drive your toes arduous into the ground, then press the bar again up.
  5. On your final set, use half the weight and carry out as many reps as potential.

22. Lying Triceps Extension

How to do it:

  1. From the tip place of your final rep of the neutral-grip press, permit your arms to float again till the weights are over your face.
  2. Keeping your higher arms at that angle, bend your elbows and decrease the weights behind your head.
  3. Extend your elbows, conserving the identical angle together with your higher arms.

23. Face Pull

How to do it:

  1. Attach a rope deal with to the highest pulley of a cable station.
  2. Grasp an finish in every hand with palms dealing with one another.
  3. Step again to put pressure on the cable.
  4. Pull the handles to your brow so your palms face your ears and your higher again is absolutely contracted.

24. Underhand Kickback

How to do it:

  1. Stand holding a dumbbell in every hand and bend your hips again, reducing your torso till it’s nearly parallel to the ground.
  2. Turn your palms to face in entrance of you and, conserving your higher arms towards your sides, lengthen your elbows till your arms are parallel to your torso.

25. Hips-off One-arm Dumbbell Press


How to do it:

  1. Lie with shoulder blades on bench, toes on ground, knees over toes, a 35-pound dumbbell in proper hand.
  2. Lift hips to start, and press weight over chest, palm dealing with in, till arm is absolutely prolonged, then decrease for one rep.
  3. Complete all reps on the proper facet, then change sides.

26. High Pull

How to do it:

  1. Grasp the bar with fingers about double shoulder width and maintain it in entrance of your thighs.
  2. Bend your knees and hips so the bar hangs simply above your knees.
  3. Explosively lengthen hips as if leaping and pull the bar as much as shoulder stage with elbows vast aside, as in an upright row.

27. Band Lateral Raise

How to do it:

  1. Step on the free finish of every band with the alternative foot so the bands kind an X in entrance of your body.
  2. Raise your arms 90 levels out to the edges till your higher arms are parallel to the ground.

28. Dive Bomber Pushup

How to do it:

  1. Get into pushup place.
  2. Push your fingers into the ground to drive your weight again so your hips rise into the air.
  3. Your again needs to be straight and your head behind your fingers.
  4. Lower your body in an arcing movement in order that your chest scoops downward and practically scrapes the ground.
  5. Continue transferring ahead as you press your body up so your torso is vertical and your legs are straight and practically on the ground. That’s one rep.

29. Seated Dumbbell Clean

How to do it:

  1. Hold a dumbbell in every hand and sit on the sting of a bench.
  2. Keeping your decrease again flat, lean ahead.
  3. Explosively straighten your body and shrug the weights so your arms rise.
  4. Allow the momentum to flip your wrists so that you catch the weights at shoulder stage.

30. Standing Dumbbell Flye

How to do it:

  1. Hold a dumbbell in every hand by your sides.
  2. Without shrugging, use your higher body to swing the weights up a few inches.
  3. Your arms and torso will kind an the wrong way up V form.
  4. Think of it as a lateral elevate with momentum however with out full vary of movement.

31. Four-in-One Dumbbell Curl

How to do it:

  1. Start with lighter dumbbells and curl 8 instances.
  2. Next, curl midway, pausing for a second simply above stomach button height at every of 8 reps.
  3. After, take the dumbbells up and descend slightly below pec height, once more pausing for a second earlier than returning for 8 reps.
  4. Finally, do 8 extra full reps.

32. Renegade Row

How to do it:

  1. Start within the high place of a pushup together with your fingers on dumbbells shoulder-width aside.
  2. Row one dumbbell towards the facet of your body whereas balancing on the alternative hand and toes.
  3. Pause for one second on the high and return the weight slowly to the start place. Repeat on the opposite facet.

33. Monkey Bars

How to do it:

  1. This is finest performed on precise monkey bars in a park, however may be tailored within the fitness center relying on the bars obtainable.
  2. Avoid the one-arm, every-other-bar swinging technique.
  3. That’s essentially the most monkey-like, however can pressure the shoulders if performed improperly.
  4. Instead, start with each fingers on the bar, dealing with the bars.
  5. Move one ahead, then the opposite.
  6. Or you may transfer laterally, beginning by dealing with perpendicular to the bars, reaching from one facet, then bringing your second hand over.

34. Farmer’s Carry

How to do it:

  1. Stand between a pair of dumbbells or kettlebells, as in the event that they had been suitcases.
  2. Squat on the hips—no bending on the again—and carry the weights.
  3. Start by strolling a brief distance—maybe a few times across the room—step by step working your approach to longer distances or heavier weights.

35. Plyo Pushup

How to do it:

  1. Start in a high plank place with fingers immediately beneath shoulders, toes hip-width aside.
  2. Slowly decrease your self down, then explode up as arduous as you may.
  3. The upward motion ought to take now not than 1 second.
  4. By exploding on the upward motion, you hit the arms tougher.

36. Inverted Bar Rows

How to do it:

  1. Lie beneath a bar that’s a number of toes above you, corresponding to in a squat rack.
  2. Hang beneath the bar with heels on the bottom and arms absolutely prolonged.
  3. Pull your chest towards the bar.
  4. Pause on the high, then return to beginning place.

37. High-to-Low Plank

How to do it:

  1. Begin in a forearm plank place.
  2. Push out of your triceps, inserting your proper hand on the bottom after which your left hand, step by step rising to pushup place.
  3. Return to the forearm plank by inserting your proper forearm down, then your left.

38. Seated Wrist Curl

How to do it:

  1. Hold dumbbells in both hand and sit on a bench, permitting your elbow and forearm to relaxation in your thigh.
  2. Your fingers ought to dangle off your knees, palms up, elbows bent at 90 levels.
  3. With the dumbbells hanging down, curl your wrist so your palm faces your biceps.
  4. Lower slowly and repeat.

39. Towel Pullup and Chinup

How to do it:

  1. Drape a towel over a pullup bar, seize maintain of an finish of the towel in every hand, and pull up.
  2. For chin ups, drape two fitness center towels over a pullup bar so each ends of the towels hold down.
  3. Perform your chin ups by gripping the towels fairly than the bar.
  4. This challenges the forearms and improves grip strength.

40. Waiter’s Walk

How to do it:

  1. Grab a kettlebell or dumbbell in a single hand and maintain it overhead or at face stage.
  2. Keep your shoulder blades pulled down and again, and hearth your glutes as you stroll.
  3. Keep your wrists straight, as in the event you had been ready tables and holding a tray.
  4. Walk 10 yards out and 10 yards again.
  5. Switch fingers and repeat.

41. Incline Dumbbell Row

How to do it:

  1. Lie chest down on an adjustable bench set at a snug angle between 30 and 45 levels.
  2. With a dumbbell in every hand, deliver your shoulder blades again and collectively as you row the weights to your sides.
  3. Return to beginning place.

42. Prone-grip Pullup

How to do it:

  1. Grab the bar with an overhand grip.
  2. Hanging from the bar, pull your shoulder blades down and again to carry your body and construct momentum.
  3. Finish by pulling up together with your arms.

43. Upright Row

How to do it:

  1. Hold the bar with fingers barely farther outdoors shoulder width than for the overhead press.
  2. Squeeze your shoulder blades collectively and pull the bar to chest height.
  3. Your elbows needs to be bent 90 levels within the high place and your higher arms needs to be horizontal.
  4. To use dumbbells, stand with toes hip-width aside, holding weights palms down in entrance of your body.
  5. While conserving shoulder blades again and chest up, elevate dumbbells vertically, lifting elbows to the ceiling.
  6. Return to beginning place.

44. Resistance Band Push-Pull

How to do it:

  1. Anchor resistance bands on both facet of you at chest height.
  2. Grab a deal with in every hand, pivot to the left to face anchor, left arm outstretched, proper arm bent, and knees mushy to start.
  3. Without rotating, concurrently pull left hand again and press proper hand ahead, and reverse for one rep.
  4. Complete all reps on the left, then change sides.

45. Tate Press

How to do it:

  1. Lie again on a bench or floor with dumbbells in every hand, arms prolonged over your chest and palms dealing with your toes.
  2. Point your elbows out and bend them to decrease the weights nearly to your chest, so that they make L shapes.
  3. Extend your elbows.

46. Suspension Trainer Pushup

How to do it:

  1. With your toes on the bottom, seize the suspension coach handles and assume pushup place.
  2. Lower your body and push up.

47. One-arm Row

How to do it:

  1. Face away from the pulley, with D-handle in left hand, fist near your body and down, proper hand 2 on proper hip.
  2. With mushy knees and a decent core, conserving arm absolutely prolonged, elevate left arm till fist is in keeping with shoulder.
  3. Hold for 1 second, then decrease for 1 rep. Complete all reps on the proper facet, then change.

48. Overhead Cable Triceps Extension


How to do it:

  1. Attach a rope deal with to the highest pulley of a cable station.
  2. Face away from the station and step ahead, elevating your arms overhead and bending your torso till you’re feeling a stretch in your triceps.
  3. Hold the place and lengthen your elbows.

49. Side Curl With Band

How to do it:

  1. Attach two bands to sturdy objects at shoulder height that face one another.
  2. Stand between them and maintain an finish in every hand. Raise your arms out 90 levels with elbows prolonged—it’s best to nonetheless really feel some pressure on the band on this beginning place.
  3. Curl the bands towards your ears and maintain the contracted place for 2 seconds.

50. Single-arm Row to Press

How to do it:

  1. Loop a resistance band to a rig about 2 toes off ground.
  2. Hold finish of band with proper hand, arm prolonged straight, half-kneeling with proper knee on ground.
  3. Row band again, then press arm up and overhead.
  4. Reverse to start for 1 rep.
  5. Do all reps on the proper facet, then change sides.

Tips For Maximizing Arm Exercises

Utilize progressive overload

Avoid a fitness plateau by intensifying the problem by means of progressive overload. Lift extra over time—by including weight, sets, or reps to extend the quantity. This added demand whenever you work out arms will spur higher positive aspects in muscle measurement, strength, and endurance.

Related: The Best Pull-Up Bars for Home Gyms of Every Size

Play with time below pressure

The longer a muscle group is strained, the quicker, extra successfully muscle fibers develop (aka hypertrophy). Eccentric training places the emphasis on the lengthening section of an exercise. 

Blast your biceps by doing a 4,0,1,0 tempo. Lower the weight for 4 seconds, pause for half a beat, take 1 second on the way in which up, then pause once more briefly earlier than repeating.

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