The best workouts for stronger arms

Mumbai-based celebrity trainer Preetesh Manas believes that whenever someone wants to show off their strength or the fact that they’ve hit the gym, the natural gesture is to bend your arms at the elbows and show off your muscular biceps . So it’s no wonder that arm day is very popular with gym goers. In addition to the show-off, the arm muscles such as biceps and triceps play an important role as auxiliary muscles in almost all exercises. Take push-ups, for example: our triceps are the auxiliary muscles in this exercise, although the chest is the main muscle group engaged. And with pull-ups, the biceps play the supporting role, while actually the back muscles are addressed.

There are three main sections of the arm, the anterior (front), posterior (back) and shoulders, and you need to make sure you train all three sections, says Bengaluru-based Rahul Huidrom, strength coach at Biceps brachii (commonly known as biceps) are in front, triceps brachii (or triceps) are in back, and along the shoulders sits the deltoid. Finally, at the back of your shoulder is the rotator cuff, which is made up of four small muscles: the supraspinatus, infraspinatus, teres minor, and subscapularis. “Each of these muscles plays its own unique and important role in helping our arms move in all the different ways we use them throughout the day. Think of all the daily activities like pushing open a door, carrying groceries, moving furniture and so on,” says Huidrom.

Also Read: Why You Need Strong Arms

Exercising and strengthening the arm muscles can go a long way towards achieving overall fitness and good aesthetics. The arm muscles are smaller in comparison to other body muscles like the back, chest and legs and therefore you need to turn to a special group of exercises known as isolation movements to work them. “Due to their specific nature, isolated movements help produce greater gains on muscles being trained for both strength, endurance and size,” explains AK Abhinav, trainer and founder of Namma Xfit in Bengaluru.

Exercising your arms and shoulders has many benefits. Arm days help increase your muscle strength, muscle tone, and muscle mass, Huidrom explains, adding that these workouts also protect your bones and stabilize your joints. “Strong, toned arms also look great and boost your confidence and aesthetics. It also comes with a variety of health benefits. Stronger arms and shoulders can reduce the risk of injury,” he adds.

Also Read: The Best Workouts for Strong Shoulders

Often women feel that regular arm training will make them big and muscular, but trainers say that’s not really true. “Resistance training is an essential part of any fitness routine…arms included. Despite some unpopular beliefs, it’s not going to give you huge, oversized, bulging muscles,” Huidrom says, trying to allay fears. “Regular training of the muscles in your arms, back, chest and shoulders is crucial to keeping your upper body strong and your muscles defined. If you’re a woman, the benefits of strength training go well beyond toned, defined muscles.”

Rahul Huidrom’s Arm Workouts

workout 1

Four sentences

EZ Bar Preacher Curls: 10-12 reps

Close-grip bench press: 10-12 reps

Three sentences

Dumbbell Hammer Curls: 10-12 reps

Overhead Rope Extensions: 12-14 reps

Three supersets

Standing Cable Curls: 15 reps

Reverse grip push-ups: 15 reps

Also Read: The Best Workout for Strong Legs

workout 2

Barbell Bicep Curls: 4 sets x 8-12 reps

Incline dumbbell curls: 3 sets of 10-12 reps

Prone Dumbbell Spider Curls: 3 sets of 10-12 reps

EZ Bar Skull Crushers: 4 sets x 8-12 reps

Tricep Dips: 3 sets x 10-12 reps

Seated dumbbell one-arm triceps extension: 3 sets of 10-12 reps

Also Read: All You Need Is A Staircase For Cardio And Strength Training

workout 3

Four sentences

Close-grip bench press: 10-12 reps

EZ Bar Skull Crusher: 10-12 reps

Three sentences

One-arm cable press: 12-15 reps

Four sentences

Barbell curls: 8-12 reps

Standing hammer curls: 10-12 reps

Seated dumbbell curls: 10-12 reps

Also Read: The Science Behind Testing Your Strength With the 1-Rep Max

The arm workout by Preetesh Manas

workout 1

5 supersets

Tight grip bench press


5 light weight supersets to failure

Barbell Curls

Lying tricep extension

5 light weight supersets to failure

hammer curl

Press triceps down

5 light weight supersets to failure

lure preachers

Dumbbell tricep kick-backs

workout 2

Three sets of medium to heavy weights

Close-grip bench press: 4-8 reps

Lying triceps extensions (10, 8, 6, 4 as weight increases)

Cable extensions (10-8-6-4 as weight increases)

Reverse cable pushdown (10-8-6-4 as weight increases)

Barbell curls: 4-8 reps

Hammer curls: 4-8 reps

Preacher curls: 4-8 reps

Cable Curls: 4-8 reps

Shrenik Avlani is the author, editor and co-author of The Shivfit Waya book on functional fitness.

Also Read: The Best Workouts for a Strong Back


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