The mantra for a smooth sail through acquiring those dreadful biceps is to stimulate your muscles by adapting a good workout regime, a well balanced nutrition program and some stunts using those dumbbells at the gym. Biceps formulate a particular prominent pair of muscle group structured on the front of your upper arm which connects the shoulder to the elbow. This muscle group aids in carrying out every activity comprising of as small a job as rotating a key to lifting heavy weight goods. Dumbbell curls, for decades, has been playing a vital role in assisting body builders and passionate health-conscious lovers of the art to build bigger and stronger biceps at a much faster pace than any other form of activity. However, with passage of time, many variations have been introduced to this classic form of arm exercise which can enable you to reach the desired goal in no time. The need of the hour is to boost up your workout program by mixing and matching the five different hand and body positions and creating newer and different versions of curls for your arms. Believe me, you will never run out of innovations and newer ways in an attempt to be adorned with those big guns. Here are some dumbbell exercises which can prove quite beneficial and fruitful to you in your endeavor.
The standard dumbbell curls
As a beginner, to increase and enhance your arm size using dumbbells start with grasping a dumbbell in each hand. The weight should not exceed 3-5 pounds if its your first attempt and for old practitioners the weight limit should be anything lighter than 15 pounds. The dumbbells should be hanging at arm’s length straight down from your shoulder. Now, keeping your upper arms stagnant, try bending your elbows and curling the dumbbells as close to your shoulders as you conveniently can. Halt a little there and carefully descend the weights back to the beginning position. Every time you retreat to the starting point remember to stretch and straighten your arms fully. Before beginning, make sure to hold the dumbbells from the middle, with palms facing upward. This standard hand position for a classic dumbbell curl helps in targeting your biceps brachii which is the largest muscle group on your upper arm’s front.
Hand position-thumb offset
Before you kick start your biceps building program, ensure to keep your back straight, your knees a little bent and your stomach muscles contracted. To achieve the thumb offset hand position, your arms should be facing forward and your thumb should be touching the outside heads of the dumbbells. This positioning and gripping posture forces your biceps brachii to stress and work harder to keep your forearm rotated in an outward direction so as to ensure your arms are upward facing while you curl the weights. It is very important to ensure a good form if you want to capitalize on your workout. The best is to take help from a trained instructor or follow a demo video while shedding your sweat at the gym. However, every arm positioning exercise should be repeated on both the sides and the entire movement duration should not exceed 5 seconds. Make sure not to let the momentum do the required lifts for you.
Hand position- pinky offset
Another very effective exercise posture using dumbbells is the pinky offset hand position. To achieve this successfully, you should face your palms forward and touch the internal heads of the dumbbell with the aid of your pinky fingers. By doing this tweak, it helps in shifting the weight in a manner that it gets distributed to provide more variety in keeping your muscles growth consistent and always on the lift.In order to get the best results at the quickest pace repeat each exercise in 2 ti 3 sets of 8 to 12 repetitions for every arm, depending upon your capacity and weight. Also, remember to keep your back and shoulders well aligned in a straight posture while involving your biceps to do the needful.
Reverse hand position using dumbbells
The reverse hand position to lift the dumbbells enables in targeting your brachioradialis while decreasing the activity around the brachii of your biceps. To do this exercise, keep your arms turned in a manner that your palms are facing behind you. Holding the dumbbells in this position willmake you feel the stress and pressure on your forearms. To add a little improved form and localization, you can practice these reverse curls by sitting on a weight bench or by leaning against a wall. But remember to keep a straight posture while doing so. Repeat the exercise with both arms for at least 2-3 sets with a repetition of 8-12 rounds in each.
Hammer Hand position
For the hammer hand position in using dumbbells, you have to position your palms to face each other. Holding the dumbbells in this manner forces your brachialis muscles to work harder with more intensity for the whole movement. If you can build up your brachialis muscles, you can make your arms appear thicker and stronger. If you can practice your movements properly without deceiving yourself by moving your back, the heavy weights will assist to build more efficient biceps. But be careful while increasing the weightage of your dumbbells which should be done cautiously not to exceed 1 1/2 to 3 pounds in a single go. Moreover, to improve on weights at a quicker pace, lift them very slowly as this lets the muscles to rely on the strength more than the momentum.
Bicep workout using dumbbells can prove extremely beneficial while attaining a standing body position as well. To practice this, come to a standing position with feet spread apart at shoulder width. Now repeat the curls with the dumbbells by first holding the weights at your sides, arms in a relaxed manner and palms facing inward. Next, your wrist should be turned in a manner so that your palms face forward. Now, raising the weight using dumbbells bend your elbows slowly with back in a straight line, shoulders in a relaxed position and elbows close to the sides. Raising the weight slowly, bring your knuckles close to the shoulder and halt when it is 3 to 4 inches away from it. Your concentration should be contract the biceps to the maximum. On every repetition, hold this position for at least 3 to 4 seconds before bringing the hand back to the beginning position. Your focus should lie on pressing and squeezing the biceps so as to get the maximum benefit.
Body position-split stance
Placing your body in a split stance position to practice dumbbell exercises for building stronger biceps can be very useful. In this dumbbell exercise, you are supposed to keep one foot right in front of you resting on a bench or step which is a little higher than the knee level while the rest of the body stands erect. Now start with the regular dumbbell curls first with your left hand and then the right one. Every repeat exercise that you do should not last for more than 5 seconds so as to ensure that your momentum is not doing the lifting, but its the strength of your biceps which is carrying out the exercise. By doing this exercise with a split stance body position, you would acquire stronger abs as it puts pressure on your buttocks and core muscles to work stronger and harder in an attempt to keep your body more stable and controlled.
Body position seated
A seated body position, when combined with dumbbell curls to focus on biceps build-up can show wonders if done with the right form and spree. To undergo this, sit straight with your back erect on a Swiss ball or a bench. This posture gives you better form when dumbbell curls are done while sitting as the risk of rocking your torso back and forth becomes less, thereby letting your biceps do the work efficiently with a steady shoulder and a straight back. If done with full concentration using both hands alternatively, comprising of 3 sets with 10 repetitions each, you can get your desired biceps much faster than you could ever imagine.
Body position decined
Practicing your dumbbell curls while lying down on a slope or decline results in hanging your arms in front of the body which in turn puts a challenging quest on your brachialis muscles. Putting more pressure on your biceps, it tones them for a mass effect, giving them a thicker and stronger appeal. To do this dumbbell exercise, you have to lie down on a bench with your chest down.However, the bench should be pre-set at an angle of 45 degrees. The dumbbell curls should be done first using the left hand and then the right one. Remember to follow the right form, posture and momentum to get the best overall results.
Inclined body position
Dumbbell curls using an inclined body position helps in getting bigger guns as lying on an incline or slope makes your arms hang out at the back of your body which in turn focuses and elaborates the long head of the muscles on your bicep brachii to a greater extent thereby putting more stress on them. However, to practice this position first set a bench at an angle of 45 degrees and lie on it on your back. Once this position has been attained, start with your dumbbell curls from one side and then go on to the other side. Repeat 3 sets on each side with 10 repetitions in every set.
Toning the biceps
Last but not the least, to get a pair of stronger and bigger biceps, the first thing is to get rid of the excessive layer of fat underlining them. This can be achieved by a regular course of cardiovascular exercises aimed for at least 30 minutes everyday. Once you get rid of all that stored fat around your arm region, focus on building and toning them. Remember, excess layers of accumulated fat in your arms can camouflage your well toned biceps. A regular and consistent regime of dumbbell curls following the different positions can help build big guns in no time. Once you have acquired the desired size of biceps, concentrate on toning them. However, if you wish to tone your biceps without leading to an increase in their size, simply use lighter weights and repeat each exercise for more counts. On the contrary, for mass results, grab on to heavier weights and switch to lesser repetitions.