• You're all caught up!

The Bicep & Tricep Ratio in Bodybuilding

author image Beth Rifkin
Based in San Francisco, Beth Rifkin has been writing health- and fitness-related articles since 2005. Her bylines include "Tennis Life," "Ms. Fitness," "Triathlon Magazine," "Inside Tennis," "American Fitness" and others. She holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Temple University.
The Bicep & Tricep Ratio in Bodybuilding
Aim for arms that are equally muscular on all sides. Photo Credit Ibrakovic/iStock/Getty Images

The biceps and triceps are opposing muscle groups on the front and back of your upper arm, respectively, and should be balanced for optimal performance and to minimize injuries. The biceps muscle group consists of two heads and the triceps have three. Their purpose is to flex and extend the elbow.

Tri is for Three

It can be common to see bodybuilders and fitness enthusiasts place more attention on building the biceps, since they are front and center on the arm and viewed more often than the triceps. However, since they have more heads, the triceps can cause problems to the arms and shoulders if they are weaker than the biceps. The training ratio should be one-to-one, with a slight emphasis placed on the triceps.

Aesthetic Appeal

Even if the look of your arms is more important to you than the function, the biceps and triceps should be trained equally. While the biceps dominate when looking at the body from a front view, side and rear views show a different picture and require developed triceps. Additionally, an arm that is fully developed from all angles will give a more aesthetically appealing look overall than one that is unbalanced.

LiveStrong Calorie Tracker
THE LIVESTRONG.COM MyPlate Nutrition, Workouts & Tips
  • Gain 2 pounds per week
  • Gain 1.5 pounds per week
  • Gain 1 pound per week
  • Gain 0.5 pound per week
  • Maintain my current weight
  • Lose 0.5 pound per week
  • Lose 1 pound per week
  • Lose 1.5 pounds per week
  • Lose 2 pounds per week
  • Female
  • Male
ft. in.



Demand Media