In this several-part series, I’m going to “countdown” what I have experienced to deliver the best “bang for your buck” in building the back of the upper-arm (which in turn will bear ancillary benefits to related muscle structure and strength.)
But, before we examine individual triceps-building exercises, I would be remiss in not noting the importance of liberal doses of the big multi-jointed compound movements (especially for beginning trainees.)
The lion share of both your initial and ongoing gains of strength, power & muscle mass will be the result of intelligently programmed apex movements.
These movements (using compound upper-body pushing exercises) include the bench press, incline or decline presses, and various forms of overhead pressing.
It is crucial to consistently through time, add load to the movement and/or increase the level of difficulty by means of variation or other techniques such as decreased rest periods.
As a natural, I have found that effectiveness and efficiency is achieved through utilizing exercises that require you to “move through space.”
Machines can have their place if one is injured or limited in some fashion, but moving the body or an implement such as a barbell, dumbbell, kettle bell etc. is superior by leaps and bounds.
For instance, you will get much more metabolically out of a basic push-up, than you ever will by using cables/pulleys or sitting down at some ergonomically friendly cam-operated mechanism with ball bearings.
Some coaches and trainees like to stick with one compound movement such as military press and improve upon that. Some like to “switch out” movements every few weeks, or even rotate them from session to session.
Everyone is different.
When in doubt, always think gravity over convenience.
Your triceps will thank you and repercuss in aesthetics and powerful capacity.
Next time, we will discuss specific exercises that will give your upper arm power/strength, that 3-D effect and excellent tone.