Arm Workouts: 8 Amazing Biceps Exercises

Most guys want pipes that would make C.T. Fletcher curse in approval, but building them takes more than just curling the same pair of dumbbells over and over. Here are 8 moves to raise your biceps game!

In my own quest for bigger biceps, I've tried just about everything, been game for anything, and even created my own twists on biceps classics like the preacher curl. My experimentation ultimately leads to your benefit. These eight awesome biceps exercises will undoubtedly send your biceps to another level.

The unique thing about this group of biceps exercises is that they're inspired by a number of different time periods, influences, mentors, and lifting partners. Some of these moves have some Golden Era bodybuilding inspiration, like Arnold; others give a nod to the master of arms himself, C.T. Fletcher, and others are my own innovations on classic movements. I've spent 15 years in the iron game; now I want to give you the chance to see some serious growth.

No matter you goals, there is something here for you. These are intense, challenging movements—but doing them is how you build shirt-ripping arms!


Larry Scott-Style Preacher Curl

These curls are a nod to the original Mr. Olympia—the late, great Larry Scott, who had the equivalent of bowling balls for biceps. He loved preacher curls, and he typically did them with a straight bar instead of an EZ-bar or dumbbells.

MusclePharm Larry Scott-Style Preacher Curl
Watch The Video - 01:39

When doing this movement, tuck your elbows so they're close together. You won't be able to do as much weight as you would with an EZ-bar, but the end result is a huge rush of blood to the biceps. Believe me, you'll notice the difference.


Alternating Incline Dumbbell Curl With A Twist

At first, these seem like any other incline dumbbell curl—which is a great biceps movement in its own right—but the added twist increases the value of each rep. Do 6-8 reps in standard fashion. Then the fun begins. Let the dumbbells hang for a moment and then rotate them in a 360-degree motion for a five count.

Yep, those are your biceps you hear screaming above the din. Now complete 3-5 more reps.

MusclePharm Alternating Incline Dumbbell Curl With A Twist
Watch The Video - 0:54

The twists will blow up your forearms. The reps after the twists will make the blood rush into your biceps faster than a fat kid reaching for that last slice of cake.

This move makes a great addition to your biceps work. I use it often.


Dave Draper-Style Forehead Curl

This is a certified Golden Era classic from the great Dave Draper, and I'm here to resurrect it because it's so badass. It's great for hitting your biceps peak and increasing your overall biceps strength.

MusclePharm Dave Draper-Style Forehead Curl
Watch The Video - 0:43

Curl a barbell like you normally would, but bring it up to your forehead instead of to your chest. Your biceps should do the work to get it there. At the top, give your biceps a good squeeze before returning to the starting position.

If this exercise is done under strict control, your strength on the regular barbell curl will skyrocket.


28-Method Curl

I love this method. It's a creation of mine that I always use, no matter what body part is being tortured. For the biceps, I use a barbell and it completely blows up my arms.

MusclePharm 28-Method Curl
Watch The Video - 01:55

If you're unfamiliar how the 28 Method works, here's a rundown: Do 7 regular reps, 7 slow reps (both on the way up and down), 7 half-reps at the top, and 7 half-reps at the bottom. The slow reps engorge your biceps with blood, and you're guaranteed to have an unbelievable pump after just one set. You will need to use much less weight than normal, but don't worry. Your sick pump will be the true measure of success.


Arnold Cheat Curl

For this move, we travel back to the Golden Era and borrow the cheat curl from the legendary Arnold Schwarzenegger. This is a great way to add mass to your biceps. It certainly works wonders for me.

MusclePharm Arnold Cheat Curl
Watch The Video - 0:50

The key to success in this exercise is knowing that you don't have to "cheat" very much. I'm certainly not talking about a full-body thrust to bounce the bar from your thighs to your chest—that would for sure get you kicked out of my gym in the blink of an eye. No, I'm talking about a nice, controlled bump from the bottom.

Your hips can provide enough momentum to get you started, after which your biceps will do the rest. It's a great way to overload your guns, forcing them to grow bigger and stronger. No need to go crazy on the weight, but challenge yourself. Go a little heavier than your normal curling weight.


One-Arm Dumbbell Preacher Curl

C.T. Fletcher may command his arms to grow—firing out a string of expletives at his biceps in the process—but he doesn't rely solely on words to build muscle. This biceps move is one of his favorites.

MusclePharm One-Arm Dumbbell Preacher Curl
Watch The Video - 0:48

Tuck your arm into the preacher or incline bench and keep your body tight and locked in. Use a heavier dumbbell than you normally would and try to hit 4-5 reps. Big weight can really help build those biceps. A lot of high-rep biceps work is great for the pump, but don't forget that heavy work is also necessary for mass and strength.


Two-Part Alternating Hammer Curl

Hammer curls are often neglected in arm training, but they shouldn't be. This two-part hammer curl is my own little twist on the exercise. I simply combine both variations of the hammer curl into one rep.

MusclePharm Two-Part Alternating Hammer Curl
Watch The Video - 0:33

The first part of the movement will look like a traditional hammer curl rep, but after I lower the weight back down, I bring it back up across my chest. That counts as one rep. Doing hammer curls like this will get the most out of each variation. It's a great way to add size to your biceps and forearms.


Machine Curl

We finish this series with a high-rep killer to send that biceps growth into overdrive. The focus here is just squeezing the biceps, so create a good angle to really enable a massive pump.

MusclePharm Machine Curl
Watch The Video - 01:01

Don't worry about digging in like you would during a preacher curl or completely flattening out your arm at the bottom of the movement. Instead, think about turning the biceps into a softball; squeeze hard and you'll get much more out of a machine curl than you typically get.

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