Your triceps make up two-thirds of your arm muscles. So if you want strong and toned arms or massive guns, you need to build your triceps by adding these 5 exercises to your tricep workouts. Because we want to maximize the returns for every lift, we want to use the most effective exercises in our tricep workouts first.
5 Most Effective Triceps Exercises
Although you may find the following triceps exercises familiar and basic, remember sometimes the simple thing is the right thing. Don’t get trapped into thinking that everything has to be complex to work. If you look at any professional bodybuilders exercise routine to build masses arms, you will find most if not all these exercises. Therefore these exercises are the top triceps exercises on everyone’s list of “must-do” in their tricep workouts. Although these lifts in order of importance, they all are beneficial for developing perfect triceps and don’t have to be performed in any particular order.
Best Practice When Adding These Exercises To Your Tricep Workouts
First, it is always best to perform compound exercises early in your routine. Since the compound exercises will incorporate more muscles and you should be lifting more weight with the compound exercises. In other words, the compound exercises like close grip tricep bench press and tricep dips will be the primary exercises to break down and build your all three heads of your triceps. As a result, if you do these compound exercise near the end, your triceps will be fatigued, and you will not work the additional stabilizer muscles as well. You want to perform the isolation exercises last to overload your triceps.
1. Close Grip Triceps Bench Press
The Close Grip Triceps Bench Press is arguably the best mass-builder for your triceps. Additionally, working your triceps this way will also improve your standard bench press. More than likely, you will be able to lift more weight with the close grip bench than any other tricep exercise. Understandably, the more weight you can lift during your routine, the more you will stress your muscles. Close Grip Triceps Bench Press will create hypertrophy in your most prominent fast-twitch muscle fibers. In other words, if you want mass, this triceps exercise is right in line for creating it.
Arguably The Best Tricep Exercise
Close Grip Triceps Bench Press is considered the best triceps exercise by many because of two fundamental reasons. (1) With the Close Grip Triceps Bench Press, you can move heavyweights, and heavyweights mean big thick well-developed triceps. (2) The Close Grip Triceps Bench Press allows for a broad range of motion. An extensive range of motion allows for the most significant muscle contraction. Both of these reasons are important factors for maximum growth. Full range of motion, combined with heavy weights equals muscle growth.
Dr. Jim Stoppani Teaches Proper Grip -How Close Is Too Close
2. Triceps Dips
The Triceps Dips, when done correctly, can be a great compound exercise that will develop all three heads of your triceps. In fact, the triceps dips allow for a long-range of motion even more than the close grip bench press. As such with triceps dips you can also pack on heavyweight using a weight belt to blast your triceps for maximum triceps growth. Additionally, you can use a dip assist machine. Don’t be discouraged if you can not dip your body weight to start. Likewise, if you add tricep dips after another compound exercise, your muscles may be too fatigued to perform dips. In this case, you can use a dip assist machine to overload your triceps progressively.
Michelle Trapp Demonstrates Tricep Dips
Go here for even more tips on Tricep Dips.
3. Lying Triceps Extensions (AKA French Presses, Skull Crushers)
Lying Triceps Extensions (aka, skull crushers) are also considered one of the best triceps exercises because for two reasons. First, Lying Triceps Extensions have a long-range of motion. Second, Lying Triceps Extensions work the entire triceps. From the elbow all the way to the latissimus dorsi. Due to its full use of the triceps muscle group, and this vast range of motion, the Lying Triceps Extension comes in a close second to the Close Grip Triceps Bench Press as the best triceps exercise.
Tutorial of Skull Crushes, Demonstrated by Tony Litton
4. Triceps Cable Pushdowns as Part of Your Tricep Workouts
Triceps Cable Pushdowns are many lifters favorite tricep isolation exercise. For good reasons, these may be your go-to tricep exercise. Because firstly the Triceps Cable Pushdown can work all three heads of your triceps. Additionally, it is a triceps exercise that allows for incredible variation by merely switching the bar. As a result of using different bars, or ropes, the angle changes and the triceps get worked differently. The varying angles provide a recipe for growth.
An example of this would be using the V-bar to hit the outer part of the triceps. Or the rope to work those hard to reach fibers deep within the triceps muscles. A reverse grip is another excellent way to vary your triceps routine and help develop the outer part of your triceps.
Michelle Trapp Demonstrate Tricep Cable Pushdowns
5. Triceps Pushups
Triceps Pushups are a compound exercise you should add to your tricep workouts simply because they are simple and they work. You can do triceps pushups anywhere and at any time. Additionally, you can adjust tricep pushups to work every part of your tricep as well. Such as, you bringing your hands in and touching your index fingers and thumbs together to use your outer triceps. Or you can turn your hands out to work your inner triceps.
Michelle Trapp Demonstrate Tricep Pushups
Michelle shows the beginner and intermediate tricep dips and gives some good tips.
Raise the difficulty of Tricep Pushups
If triceps pushups aren’t that challenging for you and you can nock out a hundred or so with ease, you should increase the difficulty. By elevating your feet, you place more weight on your arms and increase resistance. For example, place your feet on a chair or bench can increase difficulty. The higher you set the legs, the greater the angle and the harder the exercise is to perform. This increased angle increases the force. Greater force recruits more muscle fibers and will lead to more significant triceps growth. To maximize the effect on your triceps, you should perform the pushups with your hands as close together as possible.
Building Your Entire Arm Strength
Now that you have some great exercises to add to your tricep workouts you should check out these top bicep exercise you should add to your bicep workouts.