Chris Bumstead Shares His Exclusive Arm Workout for Bulging Biceps and Horseshoe Triceps

Chris Bumstead Bicep & Tricep Workout

Chris Bumstead details an exclusive biceps and triceps workout for the Generation Iron crew in his private home gym

Since Chris Bumstead got his pro card in 2016 at 21, he’s been aiming for top status. He’s achieved this through hard work, dedication, and becoming an authority in the bodybuilding industry. From being runner-up on the Mr. Olympia stage in 2017 and 2018, he’s become a four-time Olympia winner (2019-22). In this post, we’ll look at what bodybuilders can learn from the Chris Bumstead arm workout that the GI crew exclusively filmed in his private gym

Besides doing especially well in the Mr. Olympia Classic Physique category, Chris Bumstead is also popular on social media. With over 15 million followers on Instagram and a subscription of 3 million people on YouTube, the man is a phenomenon in the bodybuilding space. We also love that he consistently shares his bodybuilding tips for biceps and triceps

Chris Bumstead occasionally links up with other prominent bodybuilders to train with. For example, we’ve seen him recently crush an arm workout with Urs Kalecinski and tackle his back with Ramon Racho Queiroz. Checking out a few of these can help you improve your routines and learn a few tricks. 

Chris Bumstead also often shares home workout videos. With these, we get a chance to see up close and personal routines and better insight into how he prepares and maintains his fabulous physique

Full Name: Chris Bumstead
Weight Height Date of Birth
230-264lbs 6’1” 2/2/1995
Division Era Nationality
Classique Physique 2010s. 2020s Canadian

Chris Bumstead’s Arm Home Workout

Exercise  Set  Reps
Machine Biceps Curls 6 8-12
Prone Incline Barbell Curls 6 8-12
Dumbbell Curls 4 12-15
Incline EZ Bar Triceps Extension 4 12-15

Chris Bumstead spent most of the time targeting his arms in this workout; he did a mix of bicep and tricep exercises at his home gym. Below is the full breakdown of this exercise routine and what gains you can get if you implement the same.

Machine Biceps Curls

This exercise involves using a weight machine and slowly curling the weight with your arms to contract your biceps. (Many bodybuilders use this as a finisher to add volume to their biceps.) Ensure that you curl your arms until they’re fully flexed, and then squeeze the bicep at the top of the movement to recruit all the muscle fibers in your biceps. To effectively do a bicep curl, keep your shoulder stable and your torso upright during the exercise. 

Although your bicep brachii is the primary mover during this routine, many other muscles in your lower and upper arm contribute. Your deltoids, flexors, and extensors work together synergistically to stabilize you when you perform the movement, too. 

Doing machine bicep curls is one of the ways to get the big guns you need to win competitions. There’s a reason why Mr. Olympia Classic Physique 2022 champ does it.

Prone Incline Barbell Curl

To do a prone incline barbell curl, you need an incline bench and a barbell, preferably an EZ curl bar, which will place less stress on your wrist and give you more options for the weight you use. You lie prone on the bench, hold the barbell shoulder-width apart, and curl it towards your shoulders. Movement during this exercise should only occur at your elbow joint. 

The prone incline barbell curl targets both the inner and outside biceps. In addition, some muscles on the inner forearm also get involved when doing this exercise. Plus, since prone incline barbell curls are done against gravity, it makes things more challenging. 

This exercise is an excellent variation of barbell curls; the incline hits different angles of your biceps brachii.

Prone incline barbell curls are also great for building the biceps peaks (the mountain your arms form when you flex) and help lower your risk of injury when working with your arms. Moreover, muscular biceps improve your grip and forearm strength

Dumbbell Curls

Dumbbell curls target both the short and the long head of your bicep brachii. They’re great for bodybuilding because they can be done with heavy weights for a low number of reps. This helps to build your muscles and supercharge your arm size.

The dumbbells are held with an underhand grip and lifted from waist to shoulder level for this exercise. Keeping your feet shoulder-width apart and squeezing your biceps at the top helps get a full contraction of your biceps. You’ll also love that with dumbbell curls, you get a more comprehensive range of motion than with barbell curls.

Dumbbell curls help bodybuilders build bigger biceps. They improve your elbow flexion and help to work on your grip strength. Grip strength will carry over to deadlifts, pull-ups, and bench presses. For proper form, pick a weight that allows you to have a good technique throughout your set — no swaying or using momentum to curl the load! 

Chris Bumstead bodybuilder Vlad Yudin Edwin Mejia Jr.
Edwin Mejía Jr (Generation Iron), Chris Bumstead, Vlad Yudin (Generation Iron)

Incline EZ Bar Triceps Extensions

The incline EZ bar tricep extension is an exercise that fights gravity to build your triceps. It involves lying on an incline bench and holding the EZ bar tightly. You’ll love these because they’ll carve that horseshoe triceps sought after. 

Incline EZ bar tricep extensions train all three heads of the triceps, which account for about two-thirds of your upper arm! As a result, you’re sure to get bigger arms from doing this exercise. 

Using an EZ bar for this exercise instead of a dumbbell means increasing the weight in manageable sizes; EZ bars easily enable you to add small, weight plates. EZ bars also have a curve to put you in a semi-pronated grip, which puts less pressure on your wrists and makes the bar more comfortable to hold for excellent form, allowing you to use heavier weights. 

Cold Water Therapy 

chris bumstead cold therapy arm workout

Finally, Chris Bumstead hopped in an ice bath to end this massive arm training session, aka cold water therapy. Cold water therapy implies sitting in an ice bath to drastically reduce your body temperature and get blood to rush to your muscles, improving post-workout recovery. It’s believed to help with inflammation and improve circulation. In addition, it can spike your energy levels and improve your mood. 

A study conducted in 2011 showed that cold water therapy helped to reduce muscle soreness (1). However, pairing this with stretching and other active recovery methods like swimming is advisable to aid in full recovery from intense workouts. Cold water therapy can also help you cool off if you’re overheated after your routine to prevent heat-related illnesses such as hyperthermia (2).

Ice Barrel

Ice Barrel is a cold therapy training tool that offers an easy way to bring ice baths to your routine that can help you recover like never before.

Piggybacking off of Chris Bumstead’s enjoyment of cold water therapy, it is a good practice to get into to help your recovery. However, you may not have access to an ice bath right at home, but there is a solution for that. Ice Barrel.

The barrel’s dimensions are 42 inches high and 31 inches wide, making it easy to transport and store, yet it is still big enough for you to stay in an upright position, rather than being reclined, so you fully experience the natural response of forced cold exposure. You can also choose how much you wish to submerge yourself, whether that’s up to your neck and shoulders or even dunking completely in the cold water.

Ice Barrel walls are made from impact and puncture resistant materials, making the Ice Barrel extremely durable but it is still lightweight, and each barrel is backed by a lifetime warranty. Another thing worth mentioning is the Ice Barrel is made from linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE), which is a non-toxic, BPA-free, medical-grade material. It is also non-porous, so it won’t absorb oils, toxins or other contaminants.

Follow us on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter for more GI-exclusive bodybuilders’ workouts!


References

  1. Stanley, J., Buchheit, M., & Peake, J. M. (2012). The effect of post-exercise hydrotherapy on subsequent exercise performance and heart rate variability. European journal of applied physiology, 112(3), 951–961. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00421-011-2052-7
  2. Zhang, Y., Davis, J. K., Casa, D. J., & Bishop, P. A. (2015). Optimizing Cold Water Immersion for Exercise-Induced Hyperthermia: A Meta-analysis. Medicine and science in sports and exercise, 47(11), 2464–2472. https://doi.org/10.1249/MSS.0000000000000693
As a personal trainer and writer, Terry loves changing lives through coaching and the written word. Terry has a B.S. in Kinesiology and is an American College of Sports Medicine Certified Personal Trainer. He enjoys playing music, reading, and watching films when he's not writing or training.