The Best Tricep Workouts Using Only a Curl Bar

Male Athlete Doing Heavy Weight Exercise For Biceps
A man standing next to a curl bar. (Image: Ibrakovic/iStock/Getty Images)

Curl bar exercises performed with a close grip help you effectively work out the triceps area by isolating the rear upper arm. A close grip press places more emphasis on the arms and less force on the chest and shoulders. One added benefit of using a curl bar is placing less stress on the wrists, as the curved bar allows your wrists to more easily handle the weight load compared to a straight bar. The best curl bar triceps workouts include exercises which hit each head of the triceps muscles.

Anatomy

The triceps brachii muscle runs along the rear upper portion of your arm. The triceps consists of a medial head, lateral head and long head. The medial head is a small muscle connected to the larger long head, which spans the inner portion of the triceps muscle. The lateral head spans the outer portion of the triceps, meeting the long head to form the coveted horseshoe muscle shape which many bodybuilders covet.

Close Grip Bench Press

The close grip bench press helps add mass to the entire triceps muscles. Lie on a flat bench and have a spotter hand you a curl bar. Maintain a narrow grip, with your hands about 8 inches apart, to place emphasis on the triceps. Slowly lower the bar until it touches your chest, keeping the elbows close to the body. Push the curl bar up by extending your arms, continuing movement until your arms are fully extended. Do four sets of 12 repetitions to add size and strength to your triceps muscles. Rest for 60 seconds between each set.

Skull Crushers

Skull crushers, also called French presses, can add shape to the triceps region. Lie on a flat bench. Have a spotter hand you a curl bar. Grasp the barbell with a narrow grip and move the weight over your head, fully extending your arms. Bend your elbows to lower the weight. Move your elbows back slightly to allow the bar to move behind your head. Press the bar up by extending your arms fully. Do four sets of 15 repetitions to define your triceps muscles and rest for 60 seconds between each set.

Tips

Supplement your curl bar movements with exercises like triceps dips and dumbbell kick backs. A well-rounded exercise regimen involving varied movements best helps you add size, strength and definition to your triceps. Warm up with five minutes of light jogging before your workout to bring blood into the triceps. Stretch for five to 10 minutes to prepare your muscles for an intense resistance training session. Consult a physician before starting a weightlifting program.

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