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Fresh, Fit and Healthy Fitness  

Strong Arm Tactics

Training Terrific Triceps

By Tom Bonanti




Itís fun to train biceps (the front of your upper arms) as you watch them bulging and pumping in the mirror. But your triceps (the back of your upper arms) demand even more attention in the gym and having terrific triís will set you above the rest!

Triceps make up two-thirds of your upper arm, therefore it is logical that the bigger and more defined these babies are, the more massive your arms will look. The triceps are responsible for the movement of extension of the elbow and produce motion of the forearm. Because of their larger size you need to work triís a little longer and harder than biceps. Hit triceps once a week using 3-4 exercises of 3-4 sets of 8-12 repetitions for maintenance. Work them at least twice per week using the same formula to build them, especially if the are lagging behind your show-off biceps.

Use free weights for triceps to give you a better range of motion and to produce a fuller muscle. Always make sure you get a good stretch for triís especially as you conclude the workout. Stretching helps bring out the separations and detail in the muscle.

Here are some dynamite exercises that will leave your triceps feeling pumped after only a few sessions:

Whenever you are working a muscle group, always include at least one exercise that will take the muscle group through its full range of motion. Close-grip bench presses will do this for triceps. Lie face up on a flat bench, feet firmly planted on the floor. Take a barbell or E Z curl bar from the rack. Use a narrow grip so that your hands are only 2-3 inches apart. Keeping your elbows close to your body, lower the weight to your lower sternum, and immediately push upwards. Always begin with a light warm-up set.

Triceps extensions are a classic. Start this exercise by holding a lat machine bar with your hands 2-8 inches apart. Now press downwards from your chin until your arms are straight. Return and repeat. Most bodybuilders keep their elbows tucked in at their sides during this movement. A few, deliberately hold the elbows out to the sides and lean into the exercise. The choice is yours. This exercise can also be performed with a rope instead of a straight bar or lat machine bar.

Bent-over triceps kick backs are great for isolating each of the triceps. Hold a dumbbell in one hand and hold on to a rack or bench with the other hand. Raise and lower (kick back) the dumbbell at an even rate, keeping the upper arm in line with your torso and parallel to the floor. Keep your upper arm tight against your waist throughout. Be careful not to over use your wrist as you kick the weight back and extend the elbow.

Lying triceps extensions or ďskull crushersĒ as they sometimes call them are killers. Lie on your back on a flat bench and hold a barbell or E Z curl bar at arms length above you. Lower it slowly to the forehead and raise the bar again to armís length. During your workouts do not waste time.

When youíre working triceps or any muscle group remember to stretch and move around between sets. When you finish a set of triceps extensions, for example, walk briskly around the area and stretch each of your triceps over your head thoroughly, then do a set of off the bench dips before moving on to dumbbell kick-backs.


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