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You have probably overheard about the overwhelming number of health benefits that Omega 3s carry. Omega 3s have been shown …

The post Does Omega 3 Help Build Muscle? [In-Depth Guide] appeared first on THEBODYBUILDINGBLOG.

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We live in a busy world where everyone is involved in one activity or the other and there is barely …

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I believe that it is no secret that every fitness enthusiast wants to build bigger arms. Understandably so. Large arms …

The post Build Bigger Arms: The 5 Best Triceps Exercises appeared first on THEBODYBUILDINGBLOG.

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Today I’ll be sharing with you my favorite home workout program packed with one of the best exercises you can …

The post Burn Fat at Home With This Hardcore 10 Minute Home Workout Routine appeared first on THEBODYBUILDINGBLOG.

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While there are a number of great upper body exercises out there that will surely help you reach your goals, …

The post The 5 Best Upper Body Exercises That You Are Not Doing! appeared first on THEBODYBUILDINGBLOG.

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Hi there: It certainly has been a while since I’ve posted one of these “Motivation Mondays”. If you have missed …

The post Motivation Monday: Top 20 Fitness and Workout Motivational Quotes appeared first on THEBODYBUILDINGBLOG.

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We live in a busy world where everyone is involved in one activity or the other and there is barely any spare time for yourself.

This is then linked to several health complications that may arise from a poor nutrition and a sedentary lifestyle. Diabetes, obesity, heart complications, and a lower life span are some of the health risks involved in an unhealthy lifestyle.

To know how healthy you are, you have to calculate your BMR, which is your weight in kilogram divided by the square of your height in meter.

Staying healthy amidst the daily struggles you encounter could be a daunting task, but the good news is that you don’t have to spend hours at the gym to keep physically fit. A 15-minute daily workout plan is all you need.

You also do not have to go to the gym, as there are exercises you can do in the comfort of your home or your office space with little or no equipment required.

Getting to exercise on a daily basis might seem daunting, but it becomes easier when the time is as little as 15 minutes. It will encourage you to get moving quickly because you don’t have to spend forever on it. Also, by doing this daily, you cultivate a consistent habit which will eventually play a huge role in the result you get.

Below are a few exercises to fit into your 15-minute daily workout plan if you are a busy professional:

1. Squat Jumps

How It Works: squat jumps tone the calves, gluteus, hamstrings, core, and quadriceps, which play a major role in strengthening the hips, knees and ankles that power your jump. It provides a cardio effect, helps build muscle, burn more fat, maintains mobility and balance, prevents injuries, tones your abs, backside and entire body and helps you to jump higher and faster.

How to Do it: there are two different routines to approach squat jumps: the basic routine and the advanced version.

The Basic Routine: lower your body by squatting down as much as you can; do this as if you are assuming a sitting position, with your knees bent and thighs parallel to the ground. Now, launch your body upwards with your hands up in the air as you jump. Ensure you land back in the same position and return to the starting position where you squat. Then, repeat.

Advanced Version: this includes a number of variations to improve the intensity of the workout. Simply get a pair of dumbbells, lift them and keep by the sides. Now, lower your body by squatting down, with your knees bent while you get into the sitting position.

Keep your thighs parallel to the ground, remain in the position for a few seconds and then return to the starting position and repeat.

Prescription: 2-3 sets of 15 reps

2. Pushups and Dips

How It Works: pushups and dips are bodyweight exercises that help tone the muscles and are great for those who have a tight schedule. They are referred to as enduring exercises, as they target several muscle groups to give your upper body a great workout. While pushups target the arms and shoulders and also strengthen the muscles of your back, chest, and core, dips especially target the triceps.

How to Do It:

The Perfect Pushup: get into the plank position while you keep your feet together and your palms flat on the floor beneath your shoulders. Now, lower your body till you are able to keep your elbows at 90 degrees, your back straight and aligned and your weight intact. Once that is done, lift yourself back up and return to the starting position. Then, repeat.

The Perfect Dip: using a workout bench, start from a sitting position. Keep your arms slightly behind your hips, tuck in your elbows and align your head and torso upright. Once that is done, lower yourself down the edges of the bench to keep your elbows at 90 degrees and then return to the starting position.

Prescription: 50 reps in six sets: 20 pushups, 20 dips, 15 pushups, 15 dips, 15+ pushups, 15+ dips.

3. Diving dolphin

How It Works: diving dolphin helps to strengthen the core, upper back, and shoulders and stretches your body to the maximum. It conveniently combines stretching and strengthening. It is also helpful for those who have weak wrists.

How to Do it: you first have to perfect how to do the basic forearm plank, as the diving dolphin is simply a version of the plank exercise. Simply get into the plank position, with your elbows hinged and your legs together.

Then, press deeper into your forearms while you push your chest closer to your thighs, your heels closer to the floor and your hips raised. Engage your upper back muscles in the exercise to help you get a better stretching and strengthening as you press deeper.

Once that is done, return to the basic forearm plank position and ensure you do not sag your lower back throughout the process.

Prescription: 10 reps

4. Cat-cow exercise

How It Works: this exercise works by improving the shoulder and spine flexibility. It also helps relieve tension in the spine and reduces stiffness in the back and hips due to its flexibility benefit.

How to Do it: go down on all fours with your hand underneath your shoulders and your knees on the ground. Then, inhale deeply while you drop your chest and lift your head, with your gaze forward.

This is for the cow pose. To do the cat pose, simply exhale with your tailbone tucked in, abs contracted, your back rounded toward the ceiling and your head down.

Prescription: 10 reps of each

5. Double crunches

How It Works: double crunches work effectively on the upper and lower abs and targets the rectus abdomens. It requires you to squeeze your core in at each rep, and this helps tone the abs.

How to Do it: start by lying on your back while you bend your knees and keep your hands behind your head. Then, lift your head and shoulders toward your legs to enable you to curl up your abs as you curl your knees up at the same time. Exhale as you curl up and then return to the starting position while you inhale.

Prescription: 10 reps

Conclusion

This workout plan alternates both lower-body and upper-body movements. They help to move your muscle groups around and give you the best result. The key to getting an amazing result from this plan is to perform all exercises consecutively without rest and be consistent with it on a daily basis. With time, you will begin to notice changes.

The post A 15 Minute Daily Workout Plan for Busy Professionals appeared first on THEBODYBUILDINGBLOG.

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I believe that it is no secret that every fitness enthusiast wants to build bigger arms.

Understandably so.

Large arms are impressive and are often seen as an indicator of strength and muscularity.

I remember this young lad who used to workout at my gym. Every time I saw him there he was doing curls of sorts. When I asked him why he simply shrugged off and said “I just want big arms”.

It’s a common misconception that the biceps is what makes up the bulk of your arm’s size. When in reality, the biceps makes up approximately 30% of the overall muscle mass.

The remaining 70% is your triceps.

Yes. You heard me right. If you want to build bigger arms, then you need to focus on your triceps.

That is not to say that the biceps is not important. On the contrary – 30% is still 30%. Plus, the biceps really aids in making your arm appear more defined and muscular.

So, if you’re looking on how to build bigger arms I have good news for you. I will be sharing with you my:

5 Best Triceps Exercises To help you build bigger arms! 1. Elbow Out Triceps Extensions (Tate Press) for Big Arms! Men’s Health fitness director BJ Gaddour doing the Elbow’s Out Triceps Extension. Photo Credit Men’s Health

I do believe that this exercise was popularised by the one and only Mike O’Hearn.

I remember seeing him in a video with Steve Cook (another legend in the fitness industry) explaining how if you want to build bigger arms then you MUST do this exercise at least once a week.

When I saw him showcase the exercise I was a bit skeptical. It seemed very awkward in the execution. But one thing that I did noticed is that it focused on the movement for which the triceps was intended – extension of the forearm.

Mike claims that this exercise puts a different type of tension on your elbows allowing them to  properly strengthen over time.

Men’s Health fitness director BJ Gaddour supports Mike’s statement by saying that this exercise will help you improve your bench by making your elbows and your triceps stronger.

I decided to test out the exercise for myself and see what the hype is all about. It took some time getting used to it but after a few attempts I finally got the hang of it.

I’ll tell you this much. I don’t believe my triceps has ever been this sore on the next morning.

Because of the angle at which your elbows move, this exercise puts a lot of stress on the one head of the triceps that we often seem to neglect – namely the medial head. This probably explains why Mike states that this exercise is great for strengthening your elbows.

The lateral and long head of the triceps (responsible for building muscle mass) are also active during this exercise, especially the lateral.

The main reason why I love this exercise is because it helps you build strength in your elbows which allows you to push heavier weights on other exercises such as skull crushers, close grip bench press and dips.

By benefiting a relatively small area of the triceps, this exercise helps you add muscle size indirectly, while at the same time training the long and lateral head, which are responsible for the bulk of the triceps.

How to:  Lie on a flat or incline bench holding dumbbells that are resting vertically on your chest. Your palms have to be facing away from your face and your elbows flared out.

This is your starting position.

Begin extending your arms just as you would with a regular triceps extension exercise, without moving your shoulders. In other words, try and move just the elbow joint to extend the arm and move the weight.

Extend your arm to the point where it’s almost straight. Do not lock your arms out as you would be putting a lot of unnecessary tension on your elbow joints and removing the stress away from the triceps.

If you are looking on how to build bigger arms then you might want to integrate this exercise to your workout program.

Here’s the video by Mike O’Hearn showcasing the exercise to Steve Cook:

2. Close Grip Bench Press to Build Bigger Arms

I see this exercise as the grandfather of triceps exercises.

Seeing bodybuilders from the golden era such as Arnold Schwarzenegger and Franco Columbu lifting heavy barbells has always been a motivation booster.

This exercise is great for adding on size and strength by focusing on all three heads of the triceps.

It is considered by most as the fundamental exercise for bigger triceps and bigger arms.

Another potential reason why this exercise is great for adding on size is because of its compound nature. There are multiple records that show that multi-joint exercises, which allow the use of heavier loads, are great when it comes to building muscle mass.

This is why exercises such as deadlifts, squats, bench presses, pull-ups, etc are commonly advocated for by bodybuilders.

How to: Lay down on a straight bench press. Using shoulder width grip grab the barbell. Lift the bar away from the rack by keeping your arms locked. This is your starting position.

Lower the bar towards your chest just like you would do with a traditional bench press. Your goal is to keep your elbows as close to your body as possible to ensure that you are isolating the triceps muscle.

Release the bar to about 2 inches away from your chest and make sure that you do not rest the weight.

When coming back up you want to make sure you don’t lock your arms. Following the same principle as the Tate Press.

If executed correctly this exercise can deliver amazing results and you will start noticing improvements in arm size in no time.

3.  Triceps Dips for Mass

When most people hear dips they think of the pectoral muscle group.

While it’s true that dips are great for adding size to your chest, they are also a powerful tool to add mass to your arms.

Similar to the Tate press, this exercise also has a trickle down effect as it helps add strength to your elbows, shoulders and wrists.

Thus help you add more power and load to other exercises such as the bench press.

The reason why it’s so good in adding size is similar to that discussed above for the close grip press. You can go pretty heavy on it.

Also, you can virtually do this exercise anywhere where you have parallel bars. And yes, you can do it at home. All you need is just two chairs positioned securely.

How to: Grab a pair of parallel bars with your arms almost locked. If there is a regulating tool where you can move the bars closer to each other by turning them, use it. This will ensure more stress added to the triceps rather than the chest.

Take a deep breath and begin lowering yourself down in a slow and controlled fashion. Try and keep your torso straight to add more load to the triceps.

If you were to tilt yourself forward you would be targeting the chest more rather than the triceps.

Keep lowering yourself down until you reach a 90 degree angle of the elbows.  Try and keep your arms closer to your body. Push yourself back to the starting position. And, again, try to not lock your arms when you are back at your starting position.

If all done correctly this exercise is a powerful tool to help build bigger arms.

If you want to do triceps dips at home just take two chairs. Make sure that they are well supported to ensure that they won’t slip as you’re executing the exercise. Grab the upper section of the backrest and the rest is the same.

4.  Overhead Extensions – The Triceps Killer Overhead Extension execution. Photo credit: Bodybuilding.com

Another great exercise to help build bigger arms!

This one specifically, as the majority of the stress applied to the triceps is on the long-head.

Furthermore, just like the Tate press this exercise focuses on activating the functionality of the triceps – i.e. forearm extension.

How to: Sit down on a bench with back support holding the dumbbell with both hands. Extend your arms upwards and position it completely overhead.

Lower the dumbbell slowly behind your head. Make sure that you keep your elbows steady. Lower the dumbbell until you feel the strongest stretch on the muscle or just as the dumbbell is about to touch your neck (do not rest the dumbbell on your neck).

When coming back up remember to not lock your arms to avoid unnecessary stress on your elbow joints.

Really focus on that muscle-mind connection. Imagine how you are using the long head of the triceps to move the weight. I know, it sounds bizarre  but it really helps reap the full benefit from exercise.

The same goes for the exercises listed above.

5.  Skullcrushers – The Secret to Big Arms Skullcrushers execution. Photo credit: Bodybuilding.com

The last exercise on the list is a classic.

You’re probably going to see this one in most articles related to building bigger arms and for a good reason – it works.

Contrary to popular belief, skullcrusher’s actually a single-joint exercise – isolating the triceps as the main movement here is forearm extension.

Similar to overhead extensions, skullcrushers target the triceps by focusing most of the stress on your long head and some on the lateral.

Depending on how you lower the bar.

Keep reading. You’ll get what I mean.

How to: Sit down on a flat bench with the barbell rested on your legs.

The bar can either be E-Z or a straight one depending on the grip. The E-Z bar will allow for more concentrated stress on the triceps, so I would naturally recommend using it over the straight bar.

Lay down on the bench and raise the barbell at shoulder level by holding the bar at shoulder width. This is your starting position.

Keep your upper arms stationary and begin lowering the weight by flexing your elbow – imagine that you are aiming for your head.

I think that there is no need for me to point this out, but I feel like I have to. Make sure that you have the weight under control. If you notice that you’re struggling with it too much, don’t risk it. They call it a skullcrusher for a reason – if you drop the weight it will go straight to your face.

When coming back up do not fully extend your elbows to avoid unnecessary elbow joint stress.

If you want to add more focus on the long head of the triceps then consider doing behind the head skullcrusher.

The execution is similar. However instead of lowering the bar towards your face you lower it behind your head as you are laying down. Do not extend the bar to the same starting position as you with the traditional skullcrushers but rather raise it above your head.

Remember, throughout the execution of the exercise you want to move just your elbows (extension and flexion) to ensure that you are targeting the triceps’ function.

What I would recommend is switching between the two forms.

This will help better isolate the lateral head (traditional) and the long head (behind the head). Thus, ensure you benefit the most from the exercise and move one step closer to building bigger arms.

Conclusion

There you guys go.

My 5 best triceps exercises to build bigger arms!

I hope you noticed that this article is not just about listing exercises but also about understanding what the functionality of the triceps is for the body and how you can use that for your own advantage.

Most exercises that target the triceps follow a similar pattern – elbows closer to the body, elbow extension and flexion, stationary upper body and not locking your arms to ensure that you are not limiting the effectiveness of the exercise.

Apply that to any other triceps exercise, other than the ones I have listed, and you are going to see amazing results.

Lastly, if you are interested on fully developing your arms then you might consider checking out one of my other articles “The 4 Best Biceps Workouts“.

Tell me what you think

In the comments bellow let me know what you think about the triceps exercises on the list. Do you like them, do you hate them?

Or even better, are there any other exercises that you believe would do a much better job?

Let me know!

Show your support

If you enjoyed the article or if it was interesting and helpful in anyway please drop a like and a share. It really means a lot and helps the blog grow and shows me your support for my hard work.

The post Build Bigger Arms: The 5 Best Triceps Exercises appeared first on

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Today I’ll be sharing with you my favorite home workout program packed with one of the best exercises you can do at home that will help deliver amazing fat loss results!

Something that I have spoken about before is:

How people tend to misunderstand the way cardio exercises work and how they are suppose to help you lose body fat.

Most often, when we hear the word cardio we immediately envision low-intensity exercises such as jogging or light cycling.

That can go on for anywhere from 30 minutes to hours.

I mean, don’t get me wrong…

If you enjoy going for a long walk or jog, then by all means go ahead and do so. But if you expect to use these formats of cardio exercise to burn body fat and anticipate great results…

Think again!

You might see some good results from the start, simply because you’re introducing something new that your body is not used to so it reacts to it.

But as soon some time passes you will hit a plateau. And you’re also putting your muscle mass in danger – literally the last thing you want to do!

In order for a cardio workout to be effective:

It needs to be short and explosive so that you burn a lot of calories and elevate your metabolism – i.e. you burn calories after the workout has passed. Read more about it here.

Some claim that the after-burn effect may last for as long as 48 hours.

This is why I decided to share with you my…

Hardcore 10 Minute Home Workout to Burn Fat!

Before we get started I want to share a couple of things with you about the workout.

If you don’t want to bore yourself with extra detail, just click here to jump forward to the actual article.

Something valuable worth nothing about the workout is that it’s of high intensity nature.

What this means, simply, is that it’s hard. And when I say hard, I mean hard.  It kicks butt.

If you feel like you cannot keep with the workout, don’t quit.

Lower the intensity, slow down a bit, take a 30-40 second rest if you have to. But do not stop until you finish the workout so that you can gain the full fat-burning benefit off of it.

The whole idea behind this cardio workout is to provide you with a convenient way for you to stay in shape and lose a couple of extra pounds of body fat before the summer season comes.

The workout requires no gym equipment, and no gym. It’s made up of exercises you can do at home. Or anywhere for that matter.

And it only takes 10 minutes to complete. What this means is that no matter how busy your schedule is  – you can easily spare 10 minutes. Especially when knowing that a simple 600 seconds of your day can help you get in a better shape.

Here is a little trick you can implement if you want to lose even more fat. After your workout do a steady-state low-intensity exercise (such as jogging or walking).

The 5 minute HIIT workout mobilises fatty cells to enter the blood stream. And the low intensity exercise will make sure that they are used for energy instead of returning back.

Keep in mind this will not make a whole lot of a difference, but it will help you burn off some extra fat.

Something else – do NOT forget about your diet!

The food that you eat is of great importance when trying to lose body fat. Stuff such as lowering carb intake, lowering calorie intake, meal timing, etc.

Be careful, though! Do not lower your carb or calorie intake too much as you can damage your muscle storages. I.e. lose muscle.

And lastly, do not do this workout too often. Twice or three times a week is plenty to get really good results.

You don’t want to overtrain your body. As that could lead to hitting a plateau or even worse – muscle loss.

Scary, I know!

Lastly, before we get started, I wanted to say that the exercises that are in this workout are not mandatory, per se. There are numerous other exercises that you use or add to the already existing ones. Check out The Top 10 Exercises to do at Home from where you can select an exercise or two. This way you can maintain a good variability and make sure that you don’t get easily bored of your workout.

Anyway, that’s pretty much it.

Let’s jump in.

The workout is comprised of 10 different exercises – where you take 45 seconds on and 15 seconds off.

In other words: you spend 45 seconds doing the exercise, rest for 15 seconds and move on to the next exercise.

Conveniently enough, what this also means is that you don’t need to count any reps, just make sure you cover the 45 second mark.

The intensity at which you carry out each exercise during those 45 seconds is up to you. If you want to burn more calories – increase the intensity.

If you’re just starting out and feel like you won’t be able to keep up – keep the intensity lower.

During your 15 seconds of rest you can do whatever you want. Make sure that you have a water bottle nearby so you can stay hydrated and make use of your valuable resting time.

Pretty simple. Right?

So, here is what I am going to do now. I am going to go through each exercise that is in order and explain what is the proper way to execute it.

Keep in mind, the order of the exercises is not mandatory.

I’ve just arranged the exercises in a way so that while you are working out one muscle group you are giving your other muscles enough time to recuperate.

However, if you want to change things up, go ahead and so!

Let’s start with the first exercise:

1. Burpees – Best Exercise to do at Home

As I’ve said before – the burpee exercise is one of the simplest and most effective way to burn body fat. Which should explain to you why I’ve placed this exercise first on the list.

Best part is that it can help you build some muscle definition along the way.

Burpees is also a highly variable exercise. What I mean by that is that there are a lot of ways to do the exercise.

Proper form for doing push-up burpees. Photo Credit Demand Media Studios

This is good as by adding variation to your workout you can burn more calories and most importantly you will keep yourself entertained and not get bored of doing the same thing over and over.

One of the best Burpee variations include:

Spiderman Burpee
Rotational Jump Burpee
Mountain Climber Burpee
Box Jump Burpee
Renegade Row Burpee
Side Plank Burpee
Weighted Burpee
Pike Push-Up Burpee
Tuck Jump Burpee
Medicine Ball Burpee
Single-Leg Push-Up Burpee
Broad Jump Burpee

Here is a really good video by Uplifted featuring 50 variations of the Burpee exercise.

But for this workout we are going to stick with the classic “Push-up Burpee”. All in all, the Burpee is probably one of the best and most simple exercises to do at home.

How to: Burpees are pretty straightforward.

From a standing position get down in a squat. Place your hands on the ground at shoulder width.

Kick back your feet behind you into a plank position. Drop down to do a push-up. When returning back to your starting position jump up from the plank to a squat again. From there you would want to make a jump with your hands lifted upwards.

If you have never done Burpees before then I recommend atching Burpees fo Beginners: How to do a burpee it’s a great video where everything is really well explained.

Where everything is really well explained and visualized.

If you really want to boost the intensity of the exercise then what you can do is as you are jumping upward, you can tuck your knees towards your chest.

Check out this video that showcases the Burpee to knee tuck perfectly. I’ve got to warn you the video’s quality is quite poor!

2. Knee taps
Knee taps. Photo Credit: Men’s Health

Don’t let the simple nature of this exercise to fool you. It’s no joke! At the end of your 45 seconds you’ll be left begging for mercy.

How to: Knee taps are pretty simple to execute.

From a standing position start raising your left or right knee as high as you can. Alternate your knees in a run-like motion. As if you’re running in place.

Obviously this is not mandatory, but you can keep your hands to about the level where you raise your knees so that once your knees reach that level they “tap” your hands. That’s essentially from where the name “knee taps” comes from.

If you want to add some variation to this exercise what you can do is do a double-leg jump. In other words: left knee, right knee, both knees. This will also help add some intensity to the already hardcore exercise.

This video, while again is with really poor quality, explains how to do knee taps really well!

3. Squat Jumps Body weight squat jump. Photo Credit: Bodybuilding.com

Another great exercise you can do at home.

While the squat is a great exercise to train your quads and glutes it can also be an amazing cardio exercise that will get your heart racing.

Even more so by implementing a jump element.

How to: You start from a standing position. Make sure that your feet are at shoulder width.

From there you would want to drop down into a squat. Make sure that you keep your back straight.

From there, as you’re coming back to your starting position instead of returning to your standing position you are going to jump up. In similar fashion as the Burpee – with your hands pointing up.

Here is a pretty good video from Howcast. However, I would recommend going a bit “deeper” with your squats than she does in the video.

Again, similar to the Burpee, if you want to boost the intensity of this exercise you can add a knee tuck at the end.

4. Jumping Jacks Doing Jumping Jacks. Source: SquatWolf

One of the oldest and yet best cardio exercises that will help you burn a ton of fat.

I don’t believe that it’s necessary for me to explain how to properly do a jumping jack, but I will do regardless.

How to: From a standing position make sure that your feet are together and your hands are at your sides.

Jump up and simultaneously spread your feet and raise your arms above your head. As shown on the GIF above.

5. Seated Side-to-Side Leg Raises Seated leg raises, side to side. Photo Credit: Muscle&Fitness

This exercise is an absolute killer! It will leave you exhausted and your core muscles aching.

Something that I specifically love about this exercise is that it trains your obliques. You know, the one muscles at your abs at the side that make your abs look extra cool.

You would want to make sure that you’re seated on a comfortable surface. If you don’t have a yoga mat, or something of the likes, you can just place a pillow underneath.

How to: Start from a sitting position. Place your hands on the ground to your side for stability.

Your goal is to raise your legs from the ground (hence the name leg raises). Swing your feet from one side to the other in an arch-like fashion.

Make sure that you are raising your legs as high as you possibly can. Don’t just swing them from side to side. Imagine that you are making an arch with your legs.

Here is what I would recommend doing:

Place something in front of yourself. It doesn’t matter what – it can be anything a coffee mug, a tennis ball, or even your phone. And just make sure that your goal is to get your feet over the object whilst moving them from left to right.

If you really want to make sure that you’re not going to lower your legs you can raise the stakes. A good way would be to use a taller object. Just make sure it’s nothing “breakable”.

Trust me it helps.

6. Mountain Climbers

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While there are a number of great upper body exercises out there that will surely help you reach your goals, such as:

Dips, bench presses, pull-ups, push-ups, dumbbell rows, overhead press, etc.

However, there is also a number of powerful exercises that can help you just as much, or more, that you won’t see being done at the gym as often (if at all) as the mainstream exercises.

These often overlooked exercises will help you sculpt your upper body and build the results you crave.

I think that all of you will agree with me when I say:

We all want a toned upper body section.

And it’s completely logical when you think about it – the upper body is where the majority of our aesthetic appeal comes from.

The shredded abs, the strong arms and shoulders, the impressive pecs, and of course the big back. They are all apart of the upper body.

Obviously, that doesn’t mean that the lower body is less important or that it should be neglected, but it simply explains why the majority of fitness enthusiasts strive to achieve perfection when it comes to their upper region.

Clearly, genetics play an important role in all of this. Some people are simply gifted, while others… not so much.

Does this necessarily mean that you’re stuck with an underdeveloped upper body for the rest of your life? Obviously no!

You just have to put in a little bit more effort.

This is exactly why I decided to introduce to you my:

5 Best Upper Body Exercises That You’re Not Doing!

To help you add more variety to your workout plan and make sure that you maximize your muscle growth potential.

OK, enough chit-chat! Let’s dive in:

1. The Landmine Press Staggered stance (standard form) of the landmine press. Photo Credit: Muscleandfitness

There is a reason why the landmine press is first in our list of upper body exercises.

This often overlooked exercise is a great way to train your shoulders.

And due to its high variability it can also allow you to successfully integrate other muscle groups in the equation such as your abs, legs, triceps and upper-chest area.

What this means is that you can easily turn this exercise into an explosive compound-calorie-burning furnace. Or depending on your fitness goals you can alter the stance of the exercise so that you are applying more stress to other targeted muscle groups.

Also, you are more likely to have fun and enjoy the exercise as you can easily change things up.

Another very important benefit is that because of its incline overhead angle the exercise is shoulder-friendly and will cause less harm than most mainstream ones.

The main disadvantage, however is that in order to properly perform the landmine press you require a certain set of equipment (called a landmine station). One that if not available at your gym will pretty much make it impossible for you to include this exercise in your arsenal.

It would be wise for me to say – Do NOT attempt to mimic the equipment of the landmine press like putting it against a wall or corner as you may end up hurting yourself.

I am speaking from personal experience here! So accessibility may be an issue.

However, if you are brave enough and want to do the exercise regardless of the lack of equipment do it right . Wrap a towel around the end of the barbell and wedge it into a corner on the floor.

Again, I strongly do NOT recommend you do that as the barbell might slip.

How to do it: Before I explain the intricate nature of the exercise it would be important to mention that I am focusing on its classic stance – the staggered stance.

I strongly recommend you check out Nick Tumminello’s “Ultimate guide to landmine presses“ where he comprehensively explains how to successfully perform all 7 different stances of the exercise!

Anyway, let’s continue:

Place one end of the barbell in a landmine holder/station. Hold the other end of the barbell in your hand at your shoulder with your mirrored foot forward – if you’re using your right hand put your left foot forward.

This is your starting position.

Press the barbell forward until your arm is almost straight – keep in mind that you don’t want your elbows to be fully locked out as that puts unnecessary tension on your elbow joints and takes away the muscle tension from your triceps and shoulder.

Rinse and repeat.

2. Elbow-out triceps extension Men’s Health fitness director BJ Gaddour doing the Elbow’s Out Triceps Extension. Photo Credit Men’s Health

I remember first seeing this upper body exercise in one of Mike O’ Hearn’s videos where he was claiming that it’s one of the best ones out there to train your triceps.

I was really confused at first as the exercise seemed quite… strange.

As soon as I started doing it at the gym did I learn what was so special about it.

It works the same way and has the same effect on your triceps as your traditional triceps extensions – such as skull crushers.

However it is a lot easier on your elbow joints.

Mike O’Hearn also claims that this exercise puts a different type of tension on the elbows which allows them to strengthen over time.

That being said this upper body exercise has what is known as a trickle-down effect – meaning that its benefits will be advantageous for other exercises such as the bench press, or at least that’s what Mr. O’Hearn claims.

Another person who also advocates this notion is Men’s Health fitness director BJ Gaddour who claims that this exercise will help you improve your bench, using the words of Dave Tate who is a well known power lifter. Interesting fact is that Dave Tate apparently has popularized this exercise which is why the Elbow out triceps extension is also known as the Tate Press.

According to Mike, it also trains the one part of the triceps that we all seem to neglect – the lower head (medial head) which stretches along the elbow joint, which is also correlated with improved elbow strength.

How to do it: Lie on a flat or incline bench holding dumbbells that are resting vertically on your chest. Your palms have to be facing away from your face and your elbows flared out.

This is your starting position.

Begin extending your arms just as you would with a regular triceps extension exercise, without moving your shoulders. In other words, try and move just the elbow joint to extend the arm and move the weight.

Similarly to the landmine press – extend your arm to the point where it’s almost straight. Do not lock your arms out as you would be putting a lot of necessary tension on your elbow joints and removing the stress away from the triceps muscle.

3.  Weighted Plate Chest Squeeze (Svend Press) Craig Capurso doing the Svend Press. Photo Credit: Bodybuilding.com

I am pretty sure you have never heard of the Svend press, have you?

This is probably one of my top favorite upper body exercises.

It’s so simple and at the same time leaves you struggling to finish off your last set of repetitions. It’s a great exercise that really puts a lot of tension on your shoulders and don’t even get me started on your chest muscles – to which it applies constant isolated tension.

You can really feel the burn afterwards. You know?

Most importantly it works on the one part of the chest that we most often leave abounded – the inner pecs.

That stunning muscle definition and muscle-fiber separation is not going to just magically appear on your body. You have to work for it and this is one of the best upper body exercises that will help you.

How to do it: While standing up or sitting down grab a weighted plate with which you feel most comfortable doing anywhere from 8 to 12 repetitions. Grab the plate with your palms pointing towards each other and your elbows slightly flared outwards.

This is your starting position.

Extend the weighted plate outward – pushing it away from your chest while at the same time squeezing the plate as hard as possible with your chest to ensure that you don’t drop it.

It’s exactly that squeeze that will make this exercise a pain in the ass – but definitely worth it.

Worth noting is that there are two main ways you can do the Svend Press:

Standing up (the way that we describe) and lying down. The main difference is that by lying flat on your back and pressing the plate you isolate the chest even more but you remove some of the tension from your shoulders.

At the end of the day, it comes down to your own personal preference – whether you want to isolate the chest more or you want to compound the exercise.

Also, keep in mind that this upper body exercise has been regarded as one of the most effective chest-building exercises by Muscle and Strength magazine.

So it’s really worth considering.

4. The Windmill (Plate/Kettlebell)

From all of the upper body exercises on the list this one is probably one of the hardest.

The best part about it is that it can serve as a hybrid exercise – i.e it’s beneficial as it’s really going to help you develop your upper-body’s muscularity while at the same time, due to it’s high intensity nature, will help you boost your caloric burn and ultimately burn more body fat.

The main target of the exercise is your shoulders and traps, but it also targets your chest, forearms and your lats to some degree.

Whether you want to do it with a weighted plate or a kettlebell is honestly up to you – whichever is more comfortable for your grip.

I’ve even tried using a dumbbell and it worked fine.

How to do it: Grab a weighted plate or Kettlebell at a comfortable weight. Stand in a position where your legs are slightly wider than shoulder width (for stability) holding the weight in front of your abdomen. This is your starting position.

Start making circular motion with the weight clockwise or counterclockwise (doesn’t matter – you can even change it up as you’re going to add more variety).

What you can also try out is once your reach the level of your head you hold the weight there for one second before you continue with the circular motion to add some extra tension to your shoulders.

5. The Man Maker

In case you were wondering  – Yes, that is the real name of the exercise.

There is a good reason why this exercise is  called the “Man Maker” – it’s hard, it’s explosive and most importantly it’s going to help you develop your upper region.

Similarly to the Windmill exercise – the Man Maker can help you burn some extra body fat while helping you boost muscle growth.

Furthermore, due to it’s explosive and compound nature it can potentially boost testosterone production which will come in handy when trying to grow bigger and stronger.

The Man Maker also targets a variety of muscle groups simultaneously – your middle back, your lats, your shoulders, abs and even your quads and glutes.

It’s also pretty fun to do, which is why it’s one my favorite upper body exercises.

How to do it:  Place two dumbbells on the ground in front of you sitting parallel to each other. Squat down and grab the dumbbells.  This is your starting position.

Initiate by kicking your feet back as you enter a push-up position holding on to the dumbbells but instead of going down to the floor you are going to bring up the dumbbells up as if you are doing a dumbbell row for each side.

Hop your feet forward to your starting position and rise up cleaning the weights and bringing them to shoulder level. Hop a second time as you descend to a squat and explosively rise up and..

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