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THE 7 VARIATIONS OF THE DUMBBELL CURL TO BUILD YOUR BICEPS

If you ask a bodybuilder if he is strong, he will most certainly show you those biceps. This muscle is indeed the most symbolic of strength and also the easiest to show. It is also the one that we work most willingly. Everyone who does bodybuilding has done curls in one way or another.

 Dumbbell curl with rotation

With the overhand curl, the biceps brachii is fully strained, while with the reverse curl (overhand grip), the working angle does not allow full involvement. Concentrated curl is a slightly more advanced technique, in that it requires very precise positioning and, as the name suggests, requires perfect concentration throughout its execution.

In all of these exercises, it is an elbow flexion, one of the main actions of the biceps (biceps brachii and anterior brachii). However, many people forget another very important action: 

supination (rotation bringing the palm upwards). This movement is not very noticeable when the arm is extended, but becomes important when the elbow is bent at 90 °. This is very easy to check: flex your arm and contract your biceps well. 

At this point, turn your hand outward as far as possible (little finger towards the shoulder), you will find that you can add a little more contraction. The flexion/supination combination that the rotational barbell curl provides is the key to fully developing the biceps.

How To Do The Curl With Rotation?

  • Standing or seated, with your feet wide enough to ensure a stable position, keep your arms straight on either side of your body, a dumbbell in each hand (palms facing inward against the thighs).
  • Keep your chest straight and flex your arm.
  • When the flexion reaches 90 °, rotate the forearm to bring the palm of the hand up.
  • Continue the flexion, lowering the load in a reverse movement.
 
THE 7 VARIATIONS OF THE DUMBBELL CURL TO BUILD YOUR BICEPS

 6 Training Tips

1.Instead of keeping the “anatomical” position, that is to say the palms facing the lateral side of the thigh, take directly in pronation (palm facing back, as for inverted curls). Hold this position up to 90 ° flexion and begin supination. To perform this exercise properly, you will not be able to take heavy.

2.The most effective grip for the biceps is also the so-called “anatomical” starting position. This muscle can provide a strong initial contraction because it can pull the load in a straight line. 

This makes it possible to use relatively heavy loads. The long supinator is also a powerful flexor of the elbow, but it becomes supinator when the hand is pronated, and pronator when it is supine. Therefore, by starting the exercise this way, you force it to provide maximum contraction.

3.While performing this exercise, keep your elbows back so that the bicep work is maximum and the shoulder does not participate in the movement.

4.The supine curl is especially effective for the full development of the biceps. Keep in mind that the main action of this muscle is supination, when the elbow is bent 90 °. So, by performing the supination when the flexion reaches this angle, you place the maximum stress. Make sure your bust stays still.

5. For maximum development, do not use loads that force you to do the wrong move or cheat. When the load is too heavy, we tend to start by giving momentum with the shoulder and the back. This deprives the biceps of the most interesting part of the work for strength and volume. The right technique is still the best way to develop the biceps. Take on less weight, but make sure the biceps are doing the work.

6.Numerous muscles in the forearm and flexors of the wrist support the flexion movement of the elbow. To increase this action, also flex your wrist during the exercise. This will shorten and tighten these muscles as much as possible and allow heavier loads to be lifted.

Which Muscles Are Used?

These are the biceps brachii, the anterior brachii, the longus and the shortus supinator. The biceps brachii is made up of two bundles, the long portion and the short portion. On athletes with a good definition, we can easily differentiate the two parts. The long portion fits over the glenoid cavity of the scapula, while the short portion fits over the coracoid process of the scapula. 

The two bundles meet below on a common tendon, which crosses the elbow joint and attaches to the radius (near the elbow on the bicipital tuberosity). The anterior brachialis constitutes the deep muscular plane. It fits over the lower half of the humeral shaft and ends in a tendon that attaches to the anterior aspect of the coronoid process of the ulna.

The long supinator fits over the outer edge of the humerus and ends at the base of the radial styloid.

The short supinator consists of two bundles. A deep transverse bundle inserting on the ulna immediately below the small sigmoid cavity (its fibers are horizontal), and an oblique, almost vertical superficial bundle which inserts above on the anterior surface of the epicondyle, on the ligament lateral lateral and posterior part of the bicipital fossa of the ulna below the small sigmoid cavity.

It ends on the anterior side of the neck of the radius. and an almost vertical oblique superficial bundle which inserts upwards on the anterior aspect of the epicondyle, on the external lateral ligament and the posterior part of the bicipital fossa of the ulna below the small sigmoid cavity. 

It ends on the anterior side of the neck of the radius. and an almost vertical oblique superficial bundle which inserts upwards on the anterior aspect of the epicondyle, on the external lateral ligament and the posterior part of the bicipital fossa of the ulna below the small sigmoid cavity. It ends on the anterior side of the neck of the radius.

Incline barbell curl


Incline barbell curl

The incline seated curl with dumbbells allows you to work the biceps strictly and without cheating with pelvic movements. Like other dumbbell biceps movements, this exercise is great for reducing imbalances between two different sized biceps.

 How To Do The Incline Barbell Curl?

  • Sit on a bench with the backrest raised to about 45 ° and against which your back must be pressed at all times.
  • In each hand, hold a dumbbell in neutral grip (palms facing inward), arms straight and perpendicular to the floor.
  • Inhale and block your breath while flexing the forearms towards the arms. Keep the arms stationary, don't let them sway forward.
  • To engage the biceps properly, you can slowly rotate your wrists outward as your forearms come closer to the horizontal. At the top of the movement, the palms of the hands should be facing the body.
  • Exhale and return your hands to a neutral position as you return to the starting position. Do all of your reps.
  • The body must remain stable so that neither the torso nor the arms move during the flexion phase.
  • To make the maximum contraction even more energetic, stay in a high position for a second or two, contracting your biceps strongly.

6 training tips

  • Supination (external rotation of the wrists) during movement is crucial to involve the entire biceps.
  • Compared to other exercises for the biceps, the incline curl with dumbbells produces a stronger contraction of the biceps because the upper part of the muscle is stretched when the arm is extended towards the floor.
  • The body must remain stable so that neither the torso nor the arms move during the flexion phase.
  • Do not take excessive loads, as they may require you to rotate your wrists before starting the movement.
  • The neutral grip adopted at the start of the flexion results in a double contraction of the biceps, this muscle being a flexor of the elbow and a powerful supinator of the wrist.
  • Avoid raising the elbows as the biceps will intervene to assist with the shoulder flexion instead of the elbow flexion to raise the load.
  • In the starting position, keep your elbows slightly bent when using heavy loads. The rotation will occur earlier and with greater resistance, which will produce more muscle mass and better definition.

Which Muscles Are Used?

The incline curl with dumbbells involves 4 main muscle groups of the arm. The biceps brachii located on the anterior side of the arm and which flexes the elbow and supine the forearm. The anterior brachialis located on the anterior aspect of the arm (under the biceps near the elbow) participates in the flexion of the elbow. The long supinator which forms the outer curve of the forearm, near the elbow, assists him in supination and flexion of the elbow. Finally, the pronator round muscle located on the upper region of the outer surface of the forearm helps flexion of the elbow.

Dumbbell curl at the desk


Dumbbell curl at the desk

In weight training, the greatest strength of dumbbell curl at the desk is to increase bicep mass. The desk allows you to target the action on the biceps by suppressing the action of the shoulder which decreases the efficiency of the movement. This one-sided exercise is ideal if you have one arm that is bigger than the other. Practiced regularly, it will allow you to catch up and rebalance the development of the biceps.


 6 Training Tips

1.Keep your upper arms in contact with the desk at all times. This limits movement to the elbow joints and produces a higher concentration of the biceps.
2.To protect your elbows from injury, make sure they are on the outside of the support at the bottom or that the support is well padded if your elbows remain in contact.
3.Avoid fully extending your arms down, this is especially important when using heavy loads.
4. To intensify the exercise, hold your breath as you increase the load to help stabilize your body and build greater strength.
 5. Make sure you are working in a well-balanced and stable position so that you can focus on the movement. If you are in an awkward position or have to keep your arms in place, this will not only prevent you from exercising effectively, but you may also injure yourself.
6. For a different approach to intensifying the muscle contraction , hold a 90 ° angle up at your elbows for 1 to 2 seconds. Then finish with maximum muscle contraction. As soon as you pass the 90 °, it takes less effort to complete the movement, so you have to do your maximum during the most difficult part.

 Dumbbell curl on the bench

 

This bicep strength training exercise is great for isolating the biceps muscle well. Sitting on a bench, you won't be able to give yourself momentum with an arm swing. If you don't have a Larry Scott bench available to work your biceps, this one-sided standing motion is a pretty good alternative.

Alternate curls of the supine forearms


 Dumbbell Grip Hammer Curl


Hammer-grip elbow curl effectively builds muscles in the arms and forearms, especially near the elbow. These muscles are important because they are called upon and play an important role in many other strength training exercises for lifting bars or for pulls.

Concentrated curl

How To Do The Concentrated Curl?

  • Sit on the edge of a bench with your legs apart and your foot flat on the floor.
  • To start working your right bicep, lean forward and place your left elbow or hand on your right thigh for support. Place your right triceps against the inside of your right thigh.
  • Take a dumbbell in your right hand, supinated, and start with the elbow slightly bent.
  • Inhale and hold your breath as you raise the dumbbell until it practically touches your chest.
  • Exhale slightly as soon as you have passed the delicate point.
  • Pause, then breathe out completely, returning to the starting position while controlling the load.
  • Concentrate on flexing the arm using only the biceps and without moving your upper body.
  • After you have completed the number of reps with one arm, switch sides.

 4 Training Tips

1.To increase muscle involvement, hold the elbow of the working arm in place, pressing your triceps against your thigh at all times.

 2.To place greater stress on all three muscles (biceps brachii, brachialis anterior, and supinator longus), use a neutral grip, palms facing toward the body.

 3.To vary and get more biceps demand, start in a neutral position and supine (turn your palm up) while flexing the forearm. Reverse the movement by lowering the load back to the starting position.

4. To vary and get more bicep strain, start in a neutral position and supine (turn your palm up) while flexing the forearm. Reverse the movement by lowering the load back to the starting position. Concentration curl is a great exercise to increase bicep volume. This isolation exercise allows the movement to be controlled in its amplitude, speed and straightness.

Other Exercises For The Biceps

To gain maximum muscle mass and strength, bar curls are the best option for working the biceps, as they allow you to lift heavier loads. Training biceps with curls to the pulley is itself, an excellent late in the session to target specific areas and perform finishing work.

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