If you want to improve your entire upper body, certain tricep exercises can be very effective and will go a long way to helping you.
An area of great concern for a lot of people when it comes to the triceps is the best exercise, which ones should be avoided and how should the exercises be properly performed for optimal results.
Most clothing today, really spotlights the development or lack-there-of, of your triceps muscles.
For those of you who are not very active with weights and have flabby arms you probably won't feel as comfortable as you would if you could develop your arms properly with effective tricep exercises.
When people age, most parts of the body will sag more and more and this is especially true for your triceps muscles.
But it doesn't have to be this way because you can easily increase the size and strength of your triceps muscles and tighten and tone them very easily regardless of your age or current level of fitness by incorporating the most effective tricep exercises into your triceps workout.
When you somebody comments on the development of your arms, it’s not really your biceps they mean, it’s actually the triceps they are talking about. Your triceps are more visible than almost any other part of your body.
Your triceps muscles are primarily made up of three separate parts or heads:
The main purpose of all three of them is extension of your elbow, but
specific tricep exercises will target each of the heads in a different
The medial and lateral heads perform most movements you make with your triceps muscles. The long head is used when it's pre-stretched.
When first starting to develop your triceps muscles you need to use a triceps workout that will increase both the lean muscle and strength. Basically this means that you need to keep slowly increasing the weight you are using in your triceps workout.
Many different types of triceps exercises are structured to work very key parts of muscle. The unfortunate part of most of these exercises is that you have to work out at a gym or use expensive home gym equipment.
Did you know that when you make your arm straight the triceps are either the primary or assistor muscles? An example is the basic push-up.
Here are some of the more common and more effective tricep exercises you can perform in order to have the triceps you want. The only downfall with these particular exercises is the fact that you need to use equipment at a gym or have some good home gym equipment.
This is one of the better tricep exercises you can perform. But it will also involve your chest muscles to a certain extent.
You will need to use a flat bench and a barbell. You need to concentrate on isolating your triceps and not your chest. Use a close grip (as the name suggests) that is about 8 – 10 inches apart.
Go through the full range of motion making sure the bar comes all the way down to your pecs and extend your arms completely at the top.
Don't try and use too much weight at first.
You should always try to use exercises like this first in your triceps workout. The reason is that it will put the highest demand on your muscles. You don't want to be fatigued already when you start it.
This is one exercise that some consider to be the best tricep exercise.
It is more of an isolation exercise but can negatively affect your elbows if you are not very careful.
You can either use a straight or EZ curl bar. The main reason this exercise is known as a skull crusher is because you need to lower the bar right down to your forehead. So be very careful and keep the weight under control at all times.
This exercise is easier to perform but is still very effective when used in conjunction with other triceps exercises. You can use many different types of bars to perform this exercise. Everything from a short straight one to angled ones or ropes.
You will also need a weight stack on a pulley system.
Keep your body upright throughout the entire range of motion. Do not allow your elbows to move sideways or forwards at all.
Exercises such as close grip bench press, the California press (further
down on the page) and now dips are by far the best for over-all tricep
development. No other exercises can compare to their effectiveness.
These will effectively develop all heads of the tricep!
Because dips aren't an isolated movement, you can vary the way you do them to increase the reliance on and development of the triceps. Dips will also work your chest muscles, but that's ok.
Most gyms will have a dip station or parallel bars. Dip stations or parallel bars can be parallel or v-shaped. The dip bars should just be wider than your shoulders.
Your body position means the arms will be near your upper body during the exercise resulting in you being able to feel a extensive but not dangerous stretch of the triceps muscles.
This will also reduce the amount of work the pectoral muscles are doing, resulting in an increase in the amount of work your triceps will do. Be aware not to let your elbows move out to the side.
Lower your body to a point where it is comfortable and try to avoid locking your arms at the top.
Of course with tricep exercises like this you will just be using your own body weight as resistance, but once you can do ten full-range dips you should slightly increase the weight.
You can use a dip belt that you can find in almost any gym or a dumbbell positioned between your feet. Always add weight in the smallest increments possible.
Always control the speed of the tricep exercises you do.
This is a favorite in power lifting circles and will really help to build big strong triceps muscles.
It is like doing two tricep exercises in one – a close-grip bench press and a lying triceps extension.
You start the same way as you would for the close grip press.
rather than bringing the bar to your mid to lower pecs you allow your
elbows to move in the direction of your feet and bring the bar to your
upper pectoral muscles.
Your forearms will also touch your biceps. Then you, for the most part, do a tricep extension to push back to the start.
Here are a couple of exercises that are not as effective as the ones mentioned above but they do work the same muscles, are easy to perform with little to no equipment and can be done anywhere.
You will be using a chair or a bench of some sort for this. If you use the proper technique, tricep exercises like this will work the triceps muscles through the entire range of motion.
Sit on the ground with your back against the bench or chair and keep your legs together and straight out in front of you on the ground. Now place your hands behind your body in a dip position.
This means your palms will be facing down and be resting on the bench or chair. Your hands should be about shoulder width apart. Position your upper arms so that they are parallel to the floor.
Push down with your hands raising your body up (while keeping your body in the "L" position and your heels touching the ground) locking your arms to the point where you feel your triceps fully contract.
Most people know how to properly perform a push up. Keep your hands shoulder-width and your elbows close to your body. If the tension is not enough for you, you can have someone place a little weight on your upper back or you can place your feet up on an elevation such as a chair or bed. Using a slower, controlled tempo will help too.
Use the ideas above for a very good triceps workout to develop the massive, strong and visually appealing triceps you've always wanted.
You should pick 2 – 3 of the tricep exercises mentioned above and work them hard 1 – 2 times per week. If you choose once a week then use 5 sets per exercise and 6 – 8 reps per set. If you choose 2 times a week then use 3 sets per exercise at 8 to 10 reps per set.
Developing your triceps muscles will help to create a very positive visual effect that you can be proud of. Your triceps muscles are a large muscle mass and need to be trained more often and harder than you may think.
Do you use any unique and effective exercises or in your fitness program? What was your experience with these exercises? What results did you notice? Do you have a good or a bad story to tell about your own experience with certain exercises? Or do you have some good information that we may have missed? Let others know!
Click below to see contributions from other visitors to this page...