In every gym when you walk in, no doubt you will see men standing in front of the mirrors pumping out set after set of bicep curls. Their primary focus being on the Biceps brachii (the visible bicep muscle). While this is an obvious and relatively effective way to train the elbow flexor. But this leaves out many other under trained and under developed muscles involved in elbow flexion. To give a quick boost to your arm training in the quest for truly impressive, sleeve busting biceps try some of the following:
1) Reverse Grip - EZ bar curls:
Grab the EZ bar with an overhand grip and the palms on a grip where they will ever so slightly begin to face each other. Now starting with the arms straight curl the bar up and only at the top will your elbows slightly move forward. What this does is work the brachioradialis (a muscle running directly underneath the biceps) and forearm muscles intensely. While also reducing the work the biceps brachii contributes to the lift. When this muscle grows it pushes the biceps up which gives the appearance of larger arms!
2) Seated Dumbbell Hammer Curls:
Hammer curls are performed by holding the dumbbells with the palms facing one another Just like hammering a nail. This allows the brachialis and brachioradialis to be further targeted. This grip removes the biceps primary function or supination (turning the palm up). Performing these seated will allow you to focus directly on the task at hand, flexing the elbows without swaying the upper body to gain momentum. As well, this way the nervous system isn't wasting energy with maintaining standing balance and is devoted to the hammer curl!
3) Thick grip implements:
Thick grip implements work well for making the arms bigger in a hurry. That's because thick grips increase the neural recruitment of the motor units in the forearm while reducing the strain on the wrist. When this occurs the forearms will gain strength and size. This will lead to a radiating effect up to the biceps leading to greater weights being able to be lifted. Heavier weights cause more micro trauma to the muscles causing muscle growth as an adaptation. In the event the facility you train at doesn't have any thick implements (i.e Watson Pro Dumbbells), you can bypass this issue by purchasing a pair of Fat Gripz. These are attachable to most barbells, dumbbells and handles. You can buy yourself a set at www.fatgripz.ca, or at many supplement stores.