Triceps workouts comprise strength training exercises that focus on the three heads of the triceps brachii: the long, medial, and lateral heads. The exercises in a triceps workout that target the long head assist in creating the “horseshoe” look of the triceps, while those that engage the medial and lateral heads help develop overall triceps mass.
The triceps brachii is a three-headed muscle found at the back of the upper arm. All three heads originate from different locations: the long head from the scapula and the medial and lateral heads from the humerus. These triceps heads all converge to form a single muscle that connects to the forearm. The triceps brachii is the larger muscle in the upper arm compared to the biceps, and thus is primarily responsible for extension of the elbow and adduction of the shoulder.
Incorporating triceps exercises that evenly target all three heads offers numerous benefits, including increased arm strength, improved aesthetics, and more balanced upper body development. Moreover, strong triceps muscles significantly contribute to efficient elbow extension and shoulder adduction, crucial functions in daily activities and performance sports.
The optimal triceps exercises for your workout routine depend largely on your individual fitness goals. Triceps workouts intended for mass gain typically involve different exercises than those aiming to increase muscle definition. Mass-building triceps workouts generally incorporate heavier weights and fewer reps, while workouts aiming for muscle definition often employ lighter weights and higher reps to increase muscle endurance and promote leanness. The majority of triceps exercises can be performed in a gym or at home with dumbbells or body weight.
Below are the five most popular triceps exercises that build upper arm strength and improve aesthetic balance through hypertrophy.
- Tricep pushdowns: Tricep pushdowns are an exercise that uses a cable machine to push down a weight while ensuring your elbows remain locked at your side.
- Skull cushers: Skull crushers are a triceps exercise that involves lying on a bench and lowering a barbell or dumbbell towards your forehead, targeting the triceps.
- Tricep kickbacks: Tricep kickbacks are triceps exercises that involve holding a dumbbell, leaning forward, and extending your arm behind you.
- Close grip bench press: Close grip bench press involves performing a bench press with a narrow grip, which targets the triceps more than the chest.
- Bodyweight dips: Dips are a triceps movement where you lower your body towards the ground by bending your arms at the elbow before pushing yourself back up.
It is important to train other body parts in addition to triceps and incorporate variety into your workout routine to maximize your gains. Make sure to focus on your overall fitness and well-being and use correct form and safety precautions when performing triceps workouts. Conversely, overtraining triceps or using poor form can lead to decreased arm development and increased risk of injury. Your best defense against poor form and a lack of progress is to build a strong understanding of the mechanics that go into various tricep exercises. Below, we cover the five most important tricep workouts in detail to help you perfect your technique.
1. Tricep pushdown
Tricep pushdowns are a popular isolation exercise focusing on the three heads of the triceps brachii. This strength-training exercise involves pushing down on a cable or band with both hands, while keeping the elbows close to your body. The primary muscles worked during the exercise are the lateral, medial, and long heads of the triceps. Secondary muscle activations include the pectoralis major and minor, as well as the muscles of the wrist and hand, which contribute to grip strength and stability.
Incorporating tricep pushdowns into your routine bolsters upper body strength and functional fitness, improving tasks that require pushing or lifting. This makes it a valuable exercise for athletes in sports like tennis, basketball, or swimming, and for enhancing everyday functionality.
Improper form during tricep pushdowns strains the elbows and shoulders, possibly leading to discomfort or injury over time. Understanding the correct technique and adhering to it is the key to benefiting from tricep pushdowns and reducing injury risk.
How to do a tricep pushdown safely
The six steps below help you learn how to do tricep pushdowns safely and effectively.
- Stand facing the cable machine with your feet shoulder-width apart and your knees slightly bent.
- Grasp the bar or rope attachment with an overhand or underhand grip, depending on the variation you choose.
- Keep your elbows close to your sides and your upper arms stationary throughout the exercise.
- Exhale and push the bar or rope attachment down until your arms are fully extended, and your triceps are contracted.
- Hold the contraction for a moment, then inhale and slowly release the weight back to the starting position.
- Repeat for your desired number of repetitions.
Maintain proper posture throughout the movement, keeping the elbows stationary and the back straight, while ensuring that the pushdown motion is controlled and steady. Perform tricep pushdowns with a weight that you can comfortably handle, ensuring you avoid swinging or using momentum to lift the weight, as this can lead to injury.
What are the best tricep pushdown variations for upper body strength?
Below are six key tricep pushdown variations to further challenge the triceps and add variety to your workout.
- Close-grip tricep pushdown: The close-grip tricep pushdown is an isolation exercise that targets the medial head of the tricep muscles. Using a close grip attachment shifts the focus of the movement to the inner portion of the muscle.
- Overhead tricep pushdown: Overhead tricep pushdowns are a triceps exercise performed using a cable machine. The overhead tricep pushdown is performed by standing facing away from the machine and bending forward at the waist. The movement places greater tension on the long head muscle.
- Single-arm tricep pushdown: The single-arm tricep pushdown is a unilateral triceps exercise performed with one arm at a time using a cable machine and a single-handle attachment. Working each arm individually is a great way to combat any strength imbalances.
- V-bar tricep pushdowns: A V-bar tricep pushdown is a tricep pushdown variation performed using a cable machine and a V-shaped bar attachment held with a neutral grip. Using the V-bar attachment helps alleviate pressure on the wrist, allowing for a greater focus on the movement and working the triceps.
- Reverse grip cable tricep pushdowns: The reverse grip cable tricep pushdown is a variation of the classic tricep pushdown exercise, performed with a reverse grip and a straight bar attachment. Switching to a reverse grip shifts the focus on the movement to target the outer head of the triceps muscle.
- Resistance band tricep pushdowns: Resistance band tricep pushdowns are a tricep pushdown variation that applies constant tension to the muscle. The benefit of using resistance band tricep pushdowns in your triceps workouts is that they can be performed anywhere, inside and outside of the gym.
2. Skull Crushers
Skull crushers, or lying tricep extensions, are a cornerstone exercise for building triceps strength and size. The skull crusher exercise involves lying flat on your back, holding a weight with both hands above your head. You then bend at the elbows to lower the weight towards your forehead before extending your arms back to the original position. This motion primarily engages all three of the triceps brachii, spurring vigorous hypertrophy in the upper arm.
Lying tricep extensions have numerous secondary activations throughout the upper body, including the anterior deltoids, pectoral muscles, and wrist. Incorporating skull crushers into your triceps workout improves overall upper body function as well as grip strength. These benefits transfer not only to other arm workouts but to everyday activities involving pushing or throwing as well.
The nickname “skull crusher” serves as a grim reminder of the importance of good form. Improper technique strains your wrist and elbows, increasing the risk of losing control of the weight over your head. This potential for injury puts a critical emphasis on selecting manageable weights so you can focus on solidifying your technique.
How to do skull crushers safely
Follow the five steps below in order to perform skull crushers safely.
- Lie on a flat bench and keep your elbows against your side to maintain focus on the triceps and not the shoulders.
- Grab the barbell with a narrow grip. This not only keeps the triceps engaged but also reduces strain on the wrists.
- Extend your arms so you are looking up at the barbell.
- Lower the weight slowly towards your forehead, keeping your elbows stationary and your upper arms perpendicular to the floor.
- Return your arms to the starting position, stopping short of locking your elbows.
Skull crushers are a movement that works the triceps in isolation. Use a weight that allows you to perform the exercise correctly without going to near failure. Gradually increase the weight as you become stronger and more comfortable with the exercise. As with any exercise, it is important to listen to your body and stop if you experience any pain or discomfort.
What are the best skull crusher variations for tricep workouts?
Below are the eight best variations on the skull crusher that foster muscle confusion and prevent plateaus in your tricep workouts.
- EZ bar skull crushers: EZ Bar skull crushers are a triceps exercise that uses an EZ bar to target the triceps muscles. The cambered grip of the EZ Bar removes unnecessary stress from the wrist.
- Dumbbell skull crushers: Dumbell Skull crushers are a triceps exercise that trains each arm independently. Using dumbbells allows you to isolate your arms and work out any imbalances.
- Reverse grip skull crushers: Reverse grip skull crushers are a skull crusher variation that uses a reverse grip to target the triceps muscles from a different angle.
- Incline skull crushers: Incline skull crushers are a variation of the skull crusher exercise that uses an incline bench to target the upper portion of the triceps muscles.
- Decline skull crushers: Decline skull crushers are a triceps exercise that uses a decline bench to target the lower portion of the triceps muscles.
- Cable skull crushers: Cable skull crushers are a triceps exercise performed on a cable machine with a rope attachment. Cables add constant tension to the muscle, making the movement more engaging by taxing the triceps through the entire range of motion.
- Smith machine skull crushers: Smith machine skull crushers are a skull crusher variation that uses a Smith machine and a close grip to target the triceps muscles and enforce a fixed motion path. The fixed range of motion removes the stabilizer muscles, and isolates the triceps muscles.
3. Tricep kickbacks
Tricep kickbacks are a targeted isolation exercise designed to work all three heads of the triceps brachii. The movement involves holding a dumbbell in your hand, hinging forward from your hips, and keeping your upper arm close to your body. From this position, you extend or “kick back” your forearm until your entire arm is parallel to the ground, engaging the triceps, and then return to the starting position. This action of extending the arm primarily activates the brachii muscle while secondarily engaging the shoulder and back stabilizers.
The triceps make up about two-thirds of the upper arm, so strengthening these muscles greatly enhances overall arm aesthetics and functionality. Moreover, tricep kickbacks assist in achieving specific fitness goals such as muscle toning, strength improvement, and even injury rehabilitation. This exercise’s training motion transfers to real-world activities that require pushing or reaching overhead.
Improper execution of tricep kickbacks can lead to injury, most commonly in the form of strain or tension in the elbow, shoulder, or lower back. It’s crucial to keep your back straight, your movements controlled, and avoid using momentum or excessive weight when performing this exercise. Gradually increase the weight to further challenge your triceps as you gain strength and become more comfortable with the movement.
How to do tricep kickbacks safely
Follow the below five steps to perform dumbbell tricep kickbacks safely.
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, holding a dumbbell in one hand.
- Bend forward at the waist, keeping your back straight.
- Bring your upper arm parallel to your body, with your elbow bent at a 90-degree angle.
- Extend your arm backwards until it is parallel to the ground.
- Pause briefly, then slowly lower the weight back to the starting position.
Start with a manageable weight and focus on the proper form by keeping your upper arm still and fully extending your arm in each rep. This optimizes muscle engagement and reduces the risk of injury. Only look to increase the weight as you become stronger and more comfortable with the technique of tricep kickbacks.
What are the best tricep kickback variations to enhance triceps?
Tricep kickback variations work different combinations of muscle fibers, enhancing your functional fitness and reducing workout monotony. Below are the eight most popular variant tricep kickback exercises.
- Cable tricep kickbacks: Cable tricep kickbacks are a tricep kickbacks variation performed using a cable machine. Performing cable tricep kickbacks ensures a constant tension is applied to the muscle throughout the movement.
- Bent over dumbbell tricep kickbacks: Bent over dumbbell tricep kickbacks are a triceps exercise performed while bent over at the waist. The change in angle for bent over dumbbell tricep kickbacks stabilizes the upper arm further isolating the tricep muscles.
- Seated tricep kickbacks: Seated tricep kickbacks are a variation of the standard tricep kickback movement triceps exercise performed while seated. Seated kickbacks provide greater stability, allowing for a more controlled and focused movement.
- Standing tricep kickbacks: Standing tricep kickbacks are triceps kickback variations performed while standing, using dumbbells to target the triceps muscles. Standing kickbacks also engage the core and other stabilizing muscles in a secondary capacity.
- Double arm dumbbell tricep kickbacks: Double arm dumbbell tricep kickbacks are a variation of the standard tricep kickback where both arms are worked simultaneously.
- Resistance band tricep kickbacks: Resistance band tricep kickbacks a triceps exercise similar to cable kickbacks. Using bands makes resistance band tricep kickbacks an exercise that can be performed anywhere at home or in the gym.
- Lying tricep kickbacks: Lying tricep kickbacks are a kickback variation performed while lying prone on a bench. The position assumed for lying tricep kickbacks removes the ability to cheat or swing the weights, creating a more disciplined and effective exercise for your triceps workouts.
- Kettlebell tricep kickbacks: Kettlebell tricep kickbacks are a triceps kickback variation performed using a kettlebell. Using kettlebells taxes the triceps muscle in different ways, as the weight lifted is distributed differently than when using dumbbells.
4. Close grip bench press
The close grip bench press is a fundamental triceps exercise that enhances arm strength while minimizing injury risk. This variation of the traditional bench press employs a narrower hand placement on the bar, creating a more vertical motion that is less strenuous on the shoulder joint. The tradeoff is that the close grip bench press doesn’t isolate the pectoral muscles as much as the standard bench press. It is nevertheless an efficient choice for workouts that prioritize fortifying overall arm and upper body strength.
Close grip bench presses primarily target the triceps brachii, and simultaneously activate the pectoralis major and anterior deltoids. A secondary benefit of close grip bench presses is that they develop your wrist stability. Working this combination of muscle groups in tandem improves your overall pressing power, upper body definition, tricep size, and overall functional strength.
However, this exercise demands proper execution to reap its full benefits and avoid injury. Incorrect technique can lead to undue strain on the wrists and elbows. Thus, learning and adhering to correct form, starting with manageable weight, and progressively adding resistance is crucial to your success with this tricep workout.
How to do close grip bench presses safely
Follow the four steps below to perform the close grip bench press safely.
- Lie on a bench with your feet flat on the ground and your back flat against the bench.
- Grip the bar with your hands shoulder-width apart or closer, keeping your elbows close to your body.
- Lower the weight towards your chest, keeping your elbows close to your body.
- Pause briefly, then press the weight back up to the starting position.
It is important to start with a weight that you can handle and gradually increase the weight as you become stronger and more comfortable with the exercise. As with any exercise, it is important to listen to your body and stop if you experience any pain or discomfort.
What are the best close grip bench press variations and alternatives?
There are many variations and alternatives to the close grip bench press that work out the tricep muscles. Below, we list the eight most useful of these exercises along with their motions and benefits.
- Close grip bench press with dumbbells: Close grip bench press with dumbbells is a variation of the bench press exercise that uses dumbbells held close together and lowered down to the chest rather than either side working the triceps and inner chest muscles.
- Incline close grip bench press with barbell: Incline close grip bench press with a barbell uses an incline bench and a narrow grip to target the upper chest and triceps muscles.
- Decline close grip bench press with barbell: The decline close grip bench press with a barbell is a bench press variation that uses a decline bench and a narrow grip to target the lower chest and triceps muscles.
- Reverse grip close grip bench press with barbell: The reverse grip close grip bench press with a barbell uses a reverse grip and a narrow grip to target the triceps and forearm muscles.
- Close grip floor press with barbell: A close grip floor press with a barbell is a variation of the bench press exercise that is performed on the floor using a narrow grip and a reduced range of motion to target the triceps and chest muscles
- Close grip dips: Close grip dips are a bodyweight exercise that targets the triceps and chest muscles by dipping down and pushing back up using parallel bars.
- Close grip machine press: The close grip machine press is a machine-based exercise with a narrow grip that follows a fixed horizontal pathway directly targeting the triceps and chest muscles.
- Close grip Smith machine press: The close grip Smith machine press uses a Smith machine that offers a fixed vertical press motion that directly targets the inner chest and triceps.
5. Bodyweight dips
Bodyweight dips are a compound exercise that primarily engages the triceps, as well as the chest and anterior deltoids. This exercise involves suspending the body between parallel bars (or on a dip station), then bending at the elbows to lower the body and extending the arms to lift it again. The degree to which you lean forward shifts the emphasis between the chest and the triceps. Leaning forward works the chest more, while upright dips target the triceps.
Incorporating bodyweight dips into your routine helps build strength and definition in your triceps and improves your overall upper body strength. The functional benefits extend to many daily activities that require pushing or overhead reaching. Like any exercise, proper technique is crucial in dips to avoid injury, particularly in the shoulder joint. Over-extension or incorrect form can strain the shoulder, so it’s important to start with a range of motion that is comfortable and safe, gradually increasing depth as strength and flexibility improve.
How to do bodyweight dips safely
Follow the below four instructions to learn how to perform bodyweight dips safely.
- Stand between the parallel bars or dip station and grip the bars with your palms facing inward.
- Lift yourself up so that your arms are fully extended and your feet are off the ground.
- Lower your body by bending your elbows and leaning forward slightly, keeping your elbows close to your sides until your arms are at a 90-degree angle or slightly lower.
- Push yourself back up to the starting position by straightening your arms and contracting your triceps.
Bodyweight dips are a challenging triceps exercise that helps to build strength and muscle in the upper body. Maintain an upright body posture and move in a controlled manner for optimal triceps engagement. Keep your core engaged for stability and aim to lower your body until your upper arms are parallel to the floor. Always prioritize good form to avoid injury (especially when fatigued).
What are the best bodyweight dip variations for tricep strength?
Below are nine incredible bodyweight dip variations that keep your body guessing during your triceps workouts.
- Narrow grip bodyweight dips: Narrow grip bodyweight dips are a bodyweight exercise that targets the triceps muscles while also engaging the chest and shoulders, performed with a narrow hand placement. The narrow grip used in the movement places greater stress on the triceps while minimizing secondary muscle engagement.
- Wide grip bodyweight dips: Wide grip bodyweight dips are a bodyweight dip variation that targets the chest muscles while also engaging the triceps and shoulders, performed with a wider hand placement. Wider hand placement means the chest is activated making it a great exercise for the end of a triceps workout.
- Assisted bodyweight dips: Assisted bodyweight dips are a bodyweight exercise that uses an assistive machine or band to help support the body weight, making the exercise easier to perform. Assisted dips are great for those that are building up their strength or for those looking to get a few extra reps in at the end of their triceps workouts.
- Weighted bodyweight dips: Weighted bodyweight dips are a variation to the traditional bodyweight dip that uses additional weight, such as a weight vest or dumbbell, to increase resistance and place extra muscle-building stress on the tricep muscles.
- Tricep-focused bodyweight dips: Tricep-focused bodyweight dips are a variation of the bodyweight dip that emphasizes the triceps muscles. Tricep-focused dips enforce a strict form by keeping the body upright and the elbows close to the body., reducing the assistance from secondary muscles such as the chest or shoulders.
- Chest-focused bodyweight dips: Chest-focused bodyweight dips are a variation of bodyweight dips that emphasize the chest muscles. When performing chest-focused dips, lean forward into the movement, and allow the elbows to flare out, activating the chest and shoulder muscles.
- Plyometric bodyweight dips: Plyometric bodyweight dips are a bodyweight exercise that expands on traditional bodyweight dips by adding explosive movements, such as jumping or clapping, to increase power and strength in the upper body.
- Straight bar bodyweight dips: Straight bar bodyweight dips are a bodyweight dip variation that uses parallel bars or a straight bar to perform the dip movement. Using a straight bar changes the focus on the movement, reducing the activation of the chest and shoulder muscles and thus making the triceps work harder.
- Ring bodyweight dips: Ring bodyweight dips are a bodyweight exercise that uses rings or suspension trainers to perform the dip movement. Using rings to perform dips engages the stabilizing muscles of the shoulders, upper back, and core, offering a good full-body workout.
What are the tricep muscles?
The tricep muscles are a group of three muscles located at the back of the upper arm. The tricep muscles are responsible for elbow flexion and also aid in stabilizing the shoulder joint.
The tricep muscles are comprised of three different muscle heads. Firstly, the long head, which runs along the back of the upper arm and attaches to the shoulder blade. Secondly, you have the lateral head, which is located on the outer side of the upper arm. Finally, you have the medial head is located on the inner side of the upper arm.
Maintaining healthy tricep muscles is important for overall upper body strength and function. Regular triceps workouts that include exercises such as tricep pushdowns, dips, and diamond pushups, help to build strength and muscle in this area.
While triceps workouts are important for upper arm conditioning, maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle is also vital to support muscle growth and recovery. Adequate rest and recovery time between workouts is also important for allowing the muscles to repair and grow stronger.
Best long head tricep exercises
The best long-head tricep exercises are those that specifically target the long head of the tricep muscle. Below are the five best long-head tricep exercises.
- Barbell overhead extension: Overhead tricep extensions involve holding a barbell overhead before lowering it behind your head, pivoting at the elbow, then lifting it back up to the starting position.
- Skull crushers: Skull crushers are a great triceps exercise that involves lying on a bench and lowering a weight or dumbbell towards your forehead, then lifting it back up to the starting position.
- Close grip bench press: The close grip bench press is a similar movement to a standard bench press; only your hands are placed close together. This shifts the focus of the exercise from the chest to the triceps.
- Dumbbell kickbacks: Dumbbell kickbacks are a triceps exercise performed by leaning on a bench and extending your arm behind you, pivoting at the elbow.
- Cable pushdowns: Cable pushdowns use a cable machine to push a weight downwards before slowly returning it to the start position. The weights should stop just short of coming to a rest at the top of the movement.
The long-head tricep muscle is responsible for the overall size and shape of your triceps. Targeting this muscle helps to create a more defined and toned appearance.
Best lateral head tricep exercises
The best lateral-head tricep exercises are those that specifically target the lateral head of the tricep muscle. Some tricep exercises target the long and lateral head tricep muscles equally.
Below are the five best lateral-head tricep exercises.
- Close grip bench press: The close grip bench press is a triceps exercise that targets the lateral and long head equally. The pressure placed on the triceps is adjusted by grip spacing. The narrower the grip, the more the triceps are impacted.
- Reverse grip cable tricep pushdowns: Reverse grip cable tricep pushdowns use a cable machine with a straight bar held in an underhand grip. The movement pulls the weight downwards, targeting the lateral head of the triceps.
- Dumbbell overhead extension: Dumbbell overhead extension involves holding a dumbbell overhead with both hands and lowering it behind your head before lifting it back up to the starting position.
- Dips: Dips are a triceps exercise where you lower your body down towards the ground pivoting at the elbow, before pushing yourself back up to the starting position.
- Narrow grip skull crushers: Narrow grip skull crushers are a great triceps exercise that shifts the focus onto the lateral head by reducing the grip spacing during the movement.
The lateral head of the tricep muscle is responsible for the overall width and thickness of the upper arm, so targeting this muscle group can help to create a more muscular appearance.
What are the best tricep exercises for mass?
The best tricep exercises for mass are those that target all three of the tricep muscles with heavy weights and low reps.
Below are five of the most effective tricep exercises for adding mass:
- Close grip bench press: The close grip bench press is an exercise that mimics the standard bench press; however, the hands are placed close together, targeting the triceps more than the chest.
- Skull crushers: Skull crushers involve lying on a bench and lowering a weight or dumbbell towards your forehead, then lifting it back up to the starting position.
- Overhead tricep extension: Overhead tricep extensions involve holding a weight or dumbbell overhead with both hands and lowering it behind your head, then lifting it back up to the starting position.
- Weighted dips: Weighted dips mimic the movement of a bodyweight dip with added weights either in the form of a weighted vest or plates attached to a belt.
- Cable pushdowns: Cable pushdowns use a straight or v-shaped bar attached to a cable machine. Using the elbow as a pivot point, push the weight downwards in a slow and controlled movement.
When training for mass, it is important to focus on heavy weights and low reps. Training the muscles with a heavy weight is the best way to build size and strength. By contrast, training for definition typically involves lighter weights and higher reps.
When training with weights, it is important to understand the way in which an individual’s body type can impact potential mass gains. There are three different base body types. Firstly, the mesomorph. Mesomorphs are genetically predisposed to muscle gain. Secondly, the Ectomorph. Ectomorphs have a fast metabolism and struggle to add bulk to their frame. Finally the endomorph. Endomorphs often have a naturally higher fat level and struggle to build a truly muscular physique. However, with proper training and nutrition, individuals of all body types can build muscle mass.
However, with the correct diet and exercise, diet and supplementation, everybody has the ability to gain muscle in accordance with their frame and natural body traits.
What are the best triceps workouts for men?
The best triceps workouts for men include exercises that target the tricep muscles with heavier weights and reduced reps. While there are no exercises that are specifically gender-oriented, men and women often have different training goals, which is where tricep exercises can differ between the genders.
Below are five of the most effective triceps workouts for men.
- Close grip bench press: Close grip bench press involves performing a bench press with your hands placed close together, targeting the triceps more than the chest.
- Skull crushers: Perform skull crushers while lying on a bench. Lower a barbell or dumbbell towards your forehead, then lift it back up to the starting position.
- Overhead tricep extension: Overhead tricep extensions involve holding a barbell or dumbbell overhead with both hands and lowering it behind your head, then lifting it back up to the starting position.
- Weighted dips: Weighted dips involve performing dips with added weight, often in the form of a weighted vest or by attaching plates to a weight-lifting belt.
- Cable pushdowns: Cable pushdowns use a cable machine to push a weight downwards while keeping your elbow in a fixed position against your side.
Typically there are three common training goals for men. Firstly, many men train their triceps to build muscle mass. Secondly, many men perform regular triceps workouts to increase their strength levels. Finally, men often perform triceps exercises in order to improve their overall fitness and well-being.
What are the best triceps workouts for women?
The best triceps workouts for women include exercises that target the tricep muscles with moderate weights and higher reps. The primary difference between triceps workouts for women and for men is the training goals rather than anything exercise specific.
Below are five of the best triceps workouts for women.
- Tricep pushdowns: Tricep pushdowns involve using a cable machine to push a weight downwards, targeting the triceps by means of removing elbow movement during the exercise.
- Overhead tricep extension: Overhead tricep extensions involve holding a barbell or dumbbell overhead with both hands and lowering it behind your head, then lifting it back up to the starting position.
- Tricep kickbacks: Tricep kickbacks involve holding a weight or dumbbell in one hand, leaning forward with your body while extending your arm backward by pivoting at the elbow.
- Dips: Dips are a triceps exercise that involves lowering your body down toward the ground pivoting with your elbow while keeping your upper body still, then pushing yourself back up to the starting position.
- Close grip pushups: Close Grip Pushups involve performing a pushup with your hands placed close together. This space ensures the move targets the triceps more than the chest.
Most of the triceps workouts for women are constructed around three common training goals. Firstly, building muscle tone and definition. Secondly, increasing strength, and finally, improving overall health and fitness levels.
What are the best dip bar workouts?
The best dip bar workouts target the triceps while providing a workout that impacts the core upper body muscles.
Below are five great dip bar workouts to help you sculpt your dream physique.
- Dips: Dips are a triceps exercise where you lower your body down towards the ground with your arms behind you, then push yourself back up to the starting position. Dips primarily work the triceps, chest, and shoulders.
- Assisted dips: Assisted dips are similar to bodyweight dips but use a resistance band or machine to assist with the movement. Assisted dips can be a good option for beginners or those who are not yet strong enough to perform dips on their own.
- Straight bar dips: Straight bar dips are performed on a single bar running in front of the body as opposed to parallel bars on either side. Using a straight bar attachment on the dip bars can help to target the triceps more effectively and reduce strain on the wrists.
- L-sit dips: L-sit dips are an advanced variation of tricep dips that involve holding an L-sit position, which engages the core muscles and increases the intensity of the exercise.
- Archer dips: Archer dips are a challenging variation that involves leaning to one side during the dip, which targets one arm more than the other and can help to improve overall arm strength and symmetry.
Incorporating dip bar workouts into your training routine is a great way to build strength and muscle in the entire upper body, and not just the triceps. There are two main benefits of completing regular dip bar workouts. Firstly, a dip bar workout taxes each of the triceps, chest, and shoulders muscles. A strong upper body helps improve posture, reduces the risk of injury, and makes everyday activities easier to perform. Secondly, dip bar workouts also engage the core, helping to improve overall strength and stability.
Should I do tricep stretches before or after my workout?
Yes, you should do tricep stretches before and after your workout. Tricep stretches are an important part of any triceps workout. Stretches help improve flexibility and reduce the risk of injury.
Performing tricep stretches before your workouts helps improve your range of motion while also preparing your muscles for the tricep exercises to come. There are three benefits to regularly performing tricep stretches before your workout. Firstly, tricep stretches reduce the risk of injury. Lifting weights without a proper warm-up means you are more likely to pull or sprain a muscle. Secondly, triceps stretches help to improve your overall performance during your workout. Tricep stretches prepare the muscle for the work ahead, meaning you are able to get the most out of your workout. Finally, when a muscle is stretched, the fibers are primed for maximum blood flow and oxygen absorption.
Performing tricep stretches after your workout is advisable for three primary reasons. Firstly, post-workout tricep stretches help offer continued flexibility improvement. Secondly, tricep stretches after your workout help reduce muscle soreness and stiffness in the days that follow. Finally, performing tricep stretches after your workout also helps to improve recovery time. Stretching post-workout ensures the muscle fibers that have been worked are primed for maximum oxygen absorption and recovery.
Tricep stretches should also be performed between sets, as this helps improve your performance from one set to another. Stretching at any time is a great way to reduce the risk of muscle strain or other injuries, whether it is before, during, or after your triceps workout.
However, stretching should not be used as a replacement for proper warm-up and cool-down routines. Stretching should be performed in conjunction with these parts of your triceps workout.
Can I do a triceps workout at home?
Yes, you can train your triceps at home using a variety of exercises that require little to no equipment.
Below are seven great triceps exercises that are safe to perform at home.
- Tricep dips: Triceps dips are safe to perform at home using a sturdy chair or bench to perform the movement.
- Pushups: Pushups are simple yet highly effective triceps exercises for home workouts targeting the triceps, chest, and shoulders.
- Plank to pushup: The plank to pushup exercise involves starting in a plank position, then lowering yourself slowly into a pushup, focusing on a static hold at the top and bottom of the movement.
- Diamond pushups: Diamond pushups further target the triceps by bringing your hands close together in a diamond shape. Diamond pushups are a great triceps exercise for a home workout.
- Wall pushups: Wall pushups involve standing facing a wall and pushing yourself away from the wall with your arms. The intensity of the movement varies based on the angle at which you stand.
- Resistance band tricep pushdowns: Resistance band tricep pushdowns use a securly fastened resistance band to mimic the tricep pushdown movement.
- Dumbbell tricep extensions: Dumbbell tricep extensions are classic tricep exercises which are easy to reproduce at home.
While performing a triceps workout at home is possible, there are some limitations that need to be considered. Firstly, you may not have access to heavy weights or specialized equipment, which can make it difficult to perform certain exercises. Secondly, working out at home can be more challenging for those who are new to exercise or who lack motivation without the guidance of a personal trainer or gym environment. Finally, working out from home requires extra caution, especially when performing weighted triceps exercises. Injuries can happen, and when training alone, even the smallest problem can quickly escalate.