Do Heavy Squats Mean Bigger Arms?

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Can the king of all exercises make your arms huge?

We know what many people would say to this, usually “what the hell are you talking about” or “that makes no sense” and at first glance we don’t blame you. After all, it can’t be helped if you’re the kind of person who enjoys jumping to conclusions. For those with a bit of patience and an open mind, you’ll see what exactly the hell we’re saying.

Squats. There’s a reason it’s called the king of exercises. It strengthens the legs, namely the glutes and hamstrings. So many inexperienced lifters get caught up with having bigger biceps and pecs that they fail to focus on the lower body as well. A bodybuilder choosing to skip squatting is like an architect choosing to forgo designing the foundations of a building. Both are idiotic ideas.

So with all this talk about squat training being the number one exercise, is it the answer for bigger arms? This is where things get tricky. In one sense, yes squatting will bring you bigger and better results throughout your body. Is the exercise directly connected to your arms? No. What the exercise does do is promote testosterone release through the body however, making an anabolic wonderland. However the same could be said for exercises like deadlifts and chin ups.

So, though the squat is the king of all exercises, it can’t determine whether you’ll get massive arms or not. The idea is that through working your entire body that every muscle, big or small, will be affected by the outcome. Sure, you can get great muscle growth by doing bicep curls alone, but add some deadlifts for a stronger back or some pull ups for your lats and shoulders and you’ll see how building one muscle group effects the other. Squatting will give you stronger legs and in turn will help your deadlift giving you a stronger back, which will help you on the bench or shoulder press. It’s all about building up the overall system.

Everything is an interconnected web. You want one part of the body to grow then you better start with the foundation. Once that’s set up you can build your building from there and watch how the improvements in one area will mean advancement in another. Eat big, train your entire body, and watch not only your arms grow, but your entire body as well.

So what’s your take on this long standing argument? Let us know in the comments below and be sure to follow Generation Iron on Facebook and Twitter.


Managing editor of Generation Iron, Jonathan Salmon is a writer, martial arts instructor, and geek culture enthusiast. He has been writing about bodybuilding, combat sports, and strength sports for over 8 years. Check out his YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and Sound Cloud for in-depth MMA analysis.