Best Exercises for Building Guns of Steel

straight bar tricep extension

Build Bigger Arms with these Exercises

Most people get a gym membership so they can have bigger arms. Although arm exercises are shown a lot of love all around the world, only a few people are successful in building their pythons.

Just like us humans, no two arms exercises are created equal. We see a countless number of people curling weights but only a few own a pair of loaded guns. Don’t be one of those people wasting their time doing bicep curls. Read through and join the other side.


Barbell Curls

Barbell curls are for biceps what squats are for the legs. Using the Olympic barbell for the bicep curls will recruit more muscle fibers as compared to the smaller barbell. Maintain an upright stance while performing the curls and don’t use momentum by bending forward or backward.

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Dumbbell Bicep Curls

Alternate dumbbell bicep curls are a staple in a bicep workout. While performing the curls, rotate your wrists outwards at the top of the movement. Doing so will work the peak of your guns.

Preacher Curls

Preacher curls are an isolation exercise. Most people make the mistake of not following a full range of motion while performing this exercise. Your forearms should touch the preacher machine at the bottom of the movement, and the barbell should be at a fist’s distance from your forehead at the top.

Dumbbell Hammers Curls

Dumbbell hammer curls target the outer head of the biceps, the forearms and the length of the biceps. Tip – curling the dumbbells towards the inner pecs will target the outer biceps and curling straight ahead will target the medial biceps.

Concentration Curls

Bend over and place your elbow on the side of your quad. Perform a slow and controlled curl and squeeze your biceps at the top of the movement. You can perform the concentration curls while standing or sitting.


21’s are one of the most brutal bicep exercises. Bicep pumps will never be the same for you once you try this exercise. In a single set, perform seven reps from the bottom to the middle of a bicep curl range. Perform the next seven reps from the top to the middle. Finish the set with seven reps with a full range of motion.

Overhead Bicep Curls

Stand in the center of the cable pulley machine and use the D-handle attachments. Mimic the motion of performing a front double bicep pose and squeeze the living hell out of your pythons. Overhead bicep curls work the inner heads and the peak of biceps.

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Close Grip Bench Press

Close grip bench press help in building muscle mass in your triceps. Most people have big biceps but lack size on their tri’s. The close grip bench press is a compound movement and is best done at the beginning of the workouts.

Overhead Dumbbell Extensions

The overhead tricep exercises primarily target the long head of the tricep while the pressing movements target the medial and the shorter heads. Performing the overhead extensions with back support will assist in maintaining a better form.

Cable Pressdowns

Cable press downs are a great isolation exercise. Most people make the mistake of leaning on the bar and towards the pulley. You should stand straight and maintain a full range of motion to get the most out of the exercise.

Cable Kickbacks

Cable kickbacks are better than the dumbbell version as they keep constant tension on the triceps. Contract your triceps at the extension of the elbow and slowly return to the starting position.

Overhead Rope Extensions

Overhead rope extensions are one of the few isolation exercises which target the long tricep head. At the bottom of the movement, keep your hands close to each other and spread them as you reach the top.

Barbell Skullcrushers

Skullcrushers are a great exercise for the overall development of the tris. Start with the barbell at a fist’s distance from your forehead. Your elbows should stay in place throughout the movement. Squeeze your triceps at the top of the movement.


Dips are a functional movement and you can change the difficulty of this exercise as per your current stage. If you are a beginner, you can do the bench dips. Intermediate lifters can perform the dips on the parallel bars and the advanced bros can do the weighted dips.

Which is your favorite bicep exercise? Let us know in the comments below. Also, be sure to follow Generation Iron on Facebook and Twitter.

Vidur Saini
Vidur is a fitness junky who likes staying up to date with the fitness industry and loves publishing his opinions for everyone to see. Subscribe to his YouTube Channel.