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3 Dumbbell curl

Why it’s on the list: Is this really any different than a barbell curl? That’s up to you. Yes, you can just do a repetitive movement (we don’t recommend it), but the real value of this exercise is that it can be done a number of ways: standing or seated on a vertical or incline bench, with both hands or alternating sides, rotating wrists into a Zottman curl, or keeping them face up. In short, you have options.

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In your workout: If you’re doing these after barbell or cable curls, emphasize the difference by performing a wrist-rotation version, or extending the set by switching from bilateral to unilateral as you fatigue during a set. If you feel your reps getting sloppy, really hammer the negatives. It’s been shown that the negative portion can elicit up to 40 percent more muscle activation during some curling movements.

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