Close-grip barbell curl

The close-grip barbell curl is a curl variation where the hands are closer than shoulder width. It is thought that this helps build the outer biceps head and the peak. This curl variation is usually performed for moderate to high reps, such as 8-12 reps per set.


  1. Targets the long head of the biceps, which makes up the biceps peak
  2. Builds forearm and grip strength
  3. May be more wrist-friendly than wider grip variations

Close-grip barbell curl Images


Close-grip barbell curl Instructions

Close-grip barbell curl muscle diagram
  1. Hold a barbell with both hands, palms up and a few inches apart.
  2. Stand with your torso straight and your head up. Your feet should be about shoulder width and your elbows close to your torso. This will be your starting position. Tip: You will keep your upper arms and elbows stationary throughout the movement.
  3. Curl the bar up in a semicircular motion until the forearms touch your biceps. Exhale as you perform this portion of the movement and contract your biceps hard for a second at the top. Tip: Avoid bending the back or using swinging motions as you lift the weight. Only the forearms should move.
  4. Slowly go back down to the starting position as you inhale.
  5. Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Variations: Can also be done with a medium or wide grip, using dumbbells and cables.