If you're looking to boost the size of your arms, one of the most important things you can do is focus on working the triceps muscle. When you have nicely developed triceps, the arms will be much more noticeable since this muscle makes up such a large component (2/3) of the overall arm mass.

Many individuals don't take the time to develop this muscle. They are far more concerned with working the biceps. While biceps training is also important, it's vital to have a good balance in your upper-body workouts.

Here are four training methods you can use to bring out the total size of your triceps and make them much more noticeable.

1. Close-Grip Bench Press After Regular Bench Press

One of the best ways to work the triceps muscle is with the bench press since you're able to lift such a higher amount of weight with it.

The downside to relying solely on the straight bench press for this is that since the chest is such a strong muscle group, it will largely take the stress off the triceps, doing much of the work.

So even though the triceps will be targeted with the bench press, it's not going to be in a direct manner. The solution?

In order to overcome this problem, perform your usual bench press sets using a heavy weight so you can get the tension development on the chest, but after that, add in two or three sets of close-grip bench press. By this point the chest muscle will be fatigued to a great extent and a close-grip bench press will place more stress on the triceps naturally.

So you combine the fatigue with the change in hand position and you get a much more predominant triceps workout. Note that the weight you're lifting will almost always come down when doing this, so be sure you keep that in mind.

2. Push-Ups On An Exercise Ball

The second way you can kick up your triceps training is to perform push-ups on an exercise ball. This is a good option for those of you who don't have access to a regular gym or are looking for something to do while traveling or taking time off the weights.

Due to the instability aspect of this movement, the triceps are really going to be firing to not only perform the movement itself, but also maintain control over the ball.

3. Tri-Set Triceps Extensions

Moving back to a technique using weights ... many people are doing or at some point have incorporated a bent over triceps extension into their workout. To boost the intensity of this exercise, after performing the standard set of triceps extensions, change the position of the hand.

First switch it so the palm is now facing downward, which will place more emphasis on the outer head of the triceps. Perform 10-12 reps in this manner immediately after your straight sets so the muscles are already partially fatigued.

After that, switch the position one more time so that this time the palm is facing upward, which will then cause you to place more emphasis on the inner head of the triceps. Do another 10-12 reps in this manner and then allow yourself rest.

After one to two minutes have passed, complete the tri-set one more time through. Ideally you should perform this exercise at the end of your workout since after it's finished you'll find that the triceps are depleted of their energy stores.

4. Pyramid Your Workouts

Finally, the last training method used to make your triceps titanic is to pyramid through your reps and sets. This means that rather than performing all your sets in the same rep range, mix it up.

For your first set, use a higher weight and push through five or six reps. This will really focus in on building maximum strength. Then, increase the rep range to the six to eight rep range, decreasing the weight slightly. Finally finish off by doing a set in the higher rep range, closer to 10-to-12 reps.

The variety in rep ranges will help work the triceps maximally and keep them guessing as to what's going to come next to help prevent a plateau from kicking in.

Sample Routine
Close-grip bench press
3 sets, 6-8 reps
+ 3 more exercises


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Keep these training tips in mind as you go about creating your own triceps workout program. As long as you make sure to dedicate an appropriate amount of time and effort to training this muscle group, you should be able to make dramatic improvements to the overall appearance of the arms.

About the Author

Shannon Clark

Shannon Clark

Shannon Clark is a freelance health and fitness writer located in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.

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