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Straight-bar curls

Biceps

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Beginner

Set 1: 12-15 repetitions; Set 2: 10-12; Set 3: 7-10

Intermediate

Set 1: 12-15; Set 2: 10-12; Set 3: 7-10; Set 4: 3-6

Advanced

Set 1: 12-15; Set 2: 10-12; Set 3: 7-10; Set 4: 3-6; Set 4: 3-6

Equipment Needed:

• Barbell

Positioning:

• Standing upright, hold the barbell with both hands, arms straight down and shoulder-width apart. Palms should be facing away from your body. • Keep your elbows tucked in, close to your body.

Completing the exercise:

• Keeping your elbows stationary and moving only your forearms, curl the weights forward, bringing them upward. As you do this, contract your biceps and exhale. • The movement will be completed when you have fully contracted your biceps and the barbell is level with your upper chest/shoulders. • Hold this position for a second before bringing the bar back down to starting position and inhaling.

Considerations:

• This exercise can also be performed using a straight bar attachment hooked to a low pulley machine. You can also vary the grip, moving your hands closer together.

Alternating dumbbell curls

Biceps

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Beginner

Set 1: 12-15 repetitions; Set 2: 10-12; Set 3: 7-10

Intermediate

Set 1: 12-15; Set 2: 10-12; Set 3: 7-10; Set 4: 3-6

Advanced

Set 1: 12-15; Set 2: 10-12; Set 3: 7-10; Set 4: 3-6; Set 5: 3-6

Equipment Needed:

• Dumbbells

Positioning:

• Standing upright, hold a dumbbell in each hand with arms down at your side. • Elbows should be tucked in close to your torso with palms facing inward toward your thighs.

Completing the exercise:

• Moving only your forearm, curl the weight in your right hand while rotating your palm to a forward-facing position. • Breathing out, continue curling the weight until the dumbbells are at upper chest/shoulder level. • Hold the position for a second, squeezing your biceps. • Repeat the movement with your left arm.

Considerations:

• This exercise can also be performed while sitting on a bench without back support, and you can choose to curl both arms simultaneously instead of alternating. You can also change the hand positioning, starting with palms facing forward.

Hammer curls

Biceps

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Beginner

Set 1: 12-15 repetitions; Set 2: 10-12; Set 3: 10-12

Intermediate

Set 1: 12-5; Set 2: 10-12; Set 3: 10-12; Set 4: 7-10

Advanced

Set 1: 12-5; Set 2: 10-12; Set 3: 10-12; Set 4: 7-10; Set 5: 7-10

Equipment Needed:

• Dumbbells

Positioning:

• Standing upright, hold a dumbbell in each hand with your arms at your sides, palms facing inward to start.

Completing the exercise:

• Contracting your biceps, slowly exhale and curl the weight forward, moving only your forearms. Keep palms facing in and elbows tucked throughout the movement. • Continue to curl the weights until the dumbbells are both at upper chest/shoulder level and your bicep muscles are fully contracted. • Hold the position briefly before inhaling and lowering the weights back down to your starting position.

Considerations:

• This exercise may be performed while seated on an exercise bench with our without back support, and can be performed by alternating arms.

Cable curls

Biceps

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Beginner

Set 1: 12-15 repetitions; Set 2: 10-12; Set 3: 7-10

Intermediate

Set 1: 12-15; Set 2: 10-12; Set 3: 7-10; Set 4: 3-6

Advanced

Set 1: 12-15; Set 2: 10-12; Set 3: 7-10; Set 4: 3-6; Set 5: 3-6

Equipment Needed:

• Cable curl bar attached to a low pulley

Positioning:

• Holding the bar, stand with your torso upright. • With palms facing up, grip the bar at shoulder width, keeping elbows tucked into your sides.

Completing the exercise:

• Keeping your upper arms stationary, exhale and curl the bar upwards. • Continue to curl the bar up until it reaches upper chest/shoulder level. • Hold this position for a second, while squeezing your biceps. • Slowly breathe in and return the bar back to your starting position.

Preacher curls

Biceps

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Beginner

Set 1: 12-15 repetitions; Set 2: 10-12; Set 3: 10-12

Intermediate

Set 1: 12-15; Set 2: 10-12; Set 3: 10-12; Set 4: 7-10

Advanced

Set 1: 12-15; Set 2: 10-12; Set 3: 10-12; Set 4: 7-10; Set 5: 7-10

Equipment Needed:

• Preacher bench and E-Z bar OR arm curl machine

Positioning:

• If using a preacher bench with E-Z bar, sit on the bench and grip the bar at the inner handle. You hands will be tilted inward because of the bar’s shape. (Note: You can either grab the bar from the front bar rest found on most preacher benches or have someone had it to you once you’re seated.) • If using an arm curl machine, adjust the height of the seat accordingly, sit down and grab the handles in front of you with your palms facing up. • Position your feet in a wide stance on the ground, slightly wider than shoulder width apart.

Completing the exercise:

• E-Z bar/preacher bench users will begin by breathing in and lowering the bar slowly until your arms are fully extended. In this position, your biceps should be fully stretched. • If using an arm curl machine, you’ll already be starting with your arms outstretched, but you’ll want to make sure to inhale before beginning the exercise. • Exhaling, being to contract the biceps, curling the bar upward until you reach upper chest/shoulder height. • Hold this position for a second, tightening your biceps for the biggest impact. • Inhale when lowering the bar.