Tricep Exercises with Dumbbells
When it comes to building your arms, the biceps tend to take all the glory. However, it is important to pay close attention to the triceps to build, sculpt and create a strong upper body. With the use of dumbbells and a sound routine, your home workout can soon build the triceps to build strength effectively.
5 Great Tricep Exercises
Let’s take a closer look at the triceps and how they function to support the arm and elbow areas followed by 5 great tricep exercises with dumbbells at home for your program.
What Are The Triceps and How Many Are There?
The triceps muscles consist of a group of muscles that rest behind the arm. This group consists of three muscle fiber heads, meaning the heads originate from different positions in the shoulder area.
The three originating heads of the triceps include the long, medial, and lateral heads and all of which meet at the elbow to create one tendon. Understanding these muscle groups can help to create 5 great tricep exercises with dumbbells at home and build proper strength.
What Are The Functions Of The Triceps?
The triceps brachii predominantly work to extend and straighten the elbow as well as stabilize in certain areas of the shoulder. In addition, the triceps works to oppose the function of the biceps brachii, which are powerful muscles that rest on the front of the arm.
The primary movement of straightening the arm, or extending the forearm, is what works the triceps brachii the most, but there are additional supporting functions of this muscle.
When the forearm is in a supinated (hand faces the ceiling) and pronated (hand faces downward) position, the triceps works to stabilize the elbow joint to prevent it from straightening or bending. This has some importance on a form when working for this muscle group and can help to improve gains as well.
Why Use Dumbbells To Work The Triceps?
Dumbbells are very versatile and allow for easy storage when performing workouts at home. When using dumbbells to work the triceps, you have more freedom to move your arms in position, allowing for each arm to work independently from the other as opposed to using a barbell when one arm can work harder than the other.
In addition, utilizing dumbbells will allow for more control with each arm and should build each muscle independently. Let’s take a look now at 5 great tricep exercises with dumbbells at home
5 Great Tricep Exercises With Dumbbells At Home For Strength
1. Overhead Tricep Extensions. One of the most common dumbbell workouts you can do for your triceps is to perform overhead triceps extensions. As the name suggests, it requires lifting the dumbbell overhead and extending the dumbbell and arm straight upward.
This requires some concentration as you want full control of the movement so it is often helpful to utilize the free hand to support the arm. Start with the dumbbell in the right hand with your right elbow near your ear and bent.
Use your left hand and place it under the right elbow for support. To start the exercise, straighten the elbow upwards and slowly lower it in a controlled movement. Repeat this about ten times and switch arms.
2. Lying Supine Skull Crushers. Another popular exercise to work your triceps with a dumbbell is the skull crusher. This exercise also involves single-arm concentration and elbow extension.
Start this exercise by lying on your back in a supine position. With the dumbbell in the right arm, start with your elbows bent so the dumbbell is near your ear at the side of your head. When ready, extend the arm so the dumbbell is straight above the head and lower back down near your ear.
Repeat this ten times on each arm and consider using the free hand to support the elbow throughout the movement.
3. Tricep Kickbacks. This is another way to work the triceps in a more comfortable position, but also allows for a good range of motion. Start on the side of a bench or platform and rest your free hand on the bench and in a slightly bent position.
With the dumbbell in the right hand, bend your elbow and keep it next to your right hip at your side. When ready, extend your arm straight so that the dumbbell moves behind you and becomes parallel with the floor. Slowly lower the weight back to your side and near the hip and repeat ten times with each arm.
4. Close Grip Press. This exercise is similar to a bench press but with different hand placement. Start in a supine-lying position (on the floor, stability ball, or bench all work) with a dumbbell in each hand, and place your hands above your chest with a straight elbow.
Start with the dumbbells near or touching each other and the palms facing inward as well. Lower the weight down towards your chest (like a bench press) and press the weights above. The elbows should be close to the body when lowering the weights for best results.
5. Tate Press. This last exercise is a variation of the triceps extension exercises described before. This variation involves lying on your back with the dumbbell in your right hand. The head of the dumbbell starts on your chest with the elbows out at your side at the level of your chest.
When ready, extend the arms up and outward and slowly return to the starting position. Repeat this ten times on each arm and progress to using both dumbbells to save time.
Tips And Considerations to Optimize Your Workout
With any of the 5 great tricep exercises with dumbbells at home listed above, the goal is to build and strengthen the triceps. For best results, controlled movements are the best technique and will prevent using momentum to perform the lift.
In addition, since the triceps affect and control the elbow joint, it is best to keep the elbow in a supported and stable position the entire time. With time and proper form, progressing throughout your workout will mean adding weight and more advanced movements that will only benefit your body.
If building your arm strength and size is something you desire then it is important to focus on the triceps, in addition to the biceps. With the exercises listed above, adding any of these into your usual routine will not only help to build muscle, but it will boost your overall strength and potentially boost other lifts as well.
Photo by Jordan Bergendahl
Photo by Tima Miroshnichenko
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