Looking for a home Bicep workout with dumbbells to get sleeve-tearing arms? Congratulations, you’ve won a seat with the best online source for getting jacked at home with dumbbells and minimal equipment. Welcome to Mission Jacked.com.
In this article, we’re not going to go over the standard Dumbbell or Hammer Curl; we’ll leave that for other websites to cover. Here, we’re going to travel a little off the beaten track Like we did for Triceps and go underground where some real Bicep gems can be found.
We’re going to…
· Rip the sleeves off six home dumbbell bicep exercises with pictures and cues to help you master every movement.
· Look through a training protocol so you understand how to maximize your performance on every set.
· Slip these exercises into a workable training system so no matter if you are doing a full-body workout or a dedicated arm session, you’ll be able to utilize these exercises.
How can I increase my Bicep size with dumbbells at home?
You wouldn’t be 100% wrong for thinking that the best way to increase Bicep size is to use heavier dumbbells; but before we can consider weightier dumbbells, we first have to learn how to create a greater amount of tension in the Biceps. You do this by creating a stable environment for the muscle to be able to fully contract.
If you’re performing a dumbbell Bicep Curl with lots of movement at the shoulder, what you are doing is robbing the Bicep of much of the work and losing tension in the process. You must have a solid anchor by locking your shoulders into place. This can be done by pulling down on your Lat muscle to secure the Scapula and Humorous so that any movement only happens at the Elbow.
In this article, you'll hear me refer to target areas such as…
· The Long Bicep Head (From the front view, this would be the outer part of the Biceps)
· The Short Head (From the front view, this would be the inner side of the biceps.
· The Brachialis. Like the Biceps Brachii, the origin of the Brachialis is on the Humerus bone and it inserts on the radius bone. Parts on the brachialis can be seen peeking out from under the Biceps Brachii, especially lower on the arm
Now we have everything in place, Let’s get some curl work in.
This short Bicep head exercise is a variation of the incline dumbbell curl, and a movement, if done correctly, will have you wanting to drop the dumbbells long before the set is over.
The significant two major differences between the incline dumbbell curl and the Incline Jam Curl are the setup and the angle at which you curl the dumbbells.
Target Muscle: Short Bicep Head
Items Needed: Incline Bench set up about 60 degrees and a pair of dumbbells.
Cue 1: Sit back on an incline bench with dumbbells in hand. Pinback your shoulders so your elbows are jammed into your sides. You should feel your Lats tense as you lift your Chest and tighten your core.
Cue 2: Keeping your elbows tucked in and dumbbells out to each side, tense your Biceps before curling the dumbbells so they come up in line with your mid-Deltoids instead of in front of you. As you get to the top of the movement, gently rotate the dumbbells so your pinky finger is higher than the rest of your hand.
Cue 3: Briefly squeeze each dumbbell before slowly returning to the start position. Repeat for the desired amount of repetitions.
Everything You Need To Know About The Incline db Curl
This is torture wrapped up inside a curl and slowed down for good measure. It doesn’t take much weight for this curl variation to start putting the Bicep muscle fibers on notice.
Target Muscle Group: Long Bicep Head
Items Needed: Incline bench and a pair of dumbbells.
Cue 1: Set a bench up at an angle between 45 and 75 degrees.
Cue 2: As you lean back on the bench, retract your Shoulders and focus on keeping them in this position throughout the movement.
Cue 3: When you curl, try to make sure the dumbbells travel behind the line of your torso and not in front.
Cue 4: Raise both dumbbells to the top of the curl position before slowly letting one dumbbell come back to the start position. Hold the other dumbbell at the top of the movement.
Cue 5: Curl the lowest dumbbell back to the top and hold it there. Now slowly lower the other dumbbell to the start position while keeping the top dumbbell static. This makes one repetition.
Check Out The Ultimate Dumbbell Tricep Workout
If you want to dish up a platter of hard-hitting stress on the Short Bicep Head, look no further than the mouthwatering Plate Curl. Be careful as you’re likely to get a full muscle belly on an exercise movement that may take time to digest.
Target Muscle Group: Short Bicep Head.
Items Needed: One dumbbell and a crate or low platform to sit on.
Cue 1: Take a seat and place a dumbbell on its head between your legs.
Cue 2: Slide your hands under the knuckle of the dumbbell so that the little finger on both hands is touching and use the inside of your thighs to brace your elbows.
Cue 3: From a fully stretched position, slowly curl the dumbbell up to just your chin area. Briefly tense your Biceps before slowly returning the dumbbell to the start position.
Incline Curl Your Way To Bigger Biceps
While the biceps cross both the shoulder and elbow joints, its main function is at the elbow where it flexes the forearm and supinates the forearm. One of the great movements to strengthen this area and function is the Standing Dumbbell Zottman Curl.
Target Muscle Group: Biceps, Brachialis & Forearms.
Items Needed: A pair of dumbbells
Cue 1: Stand upright with Shoulder pin back and straight Back. Without swinging, curl the dumbbells to the top of the movement.
Cue 2: At the top of the curl, turn the palms down so that they are facing the floor before returning the dumbbells to the start of the curl.
Cue 3: At the bottom of the movement, rotate palms back so they are facing before starting the curl.
Check Out The Incline Dumbbell Curl & All Its Variations
The Standing Dumbbell Drag Curl should be seen as the meat, potatoes with all the trimmings when it comes to Bicep training. If you want to make the guns shoot a hole in the sleeves, make sure to add this movement into your home Bicep workout with dumbbells.
Target Muscle Group: Long Bicep Head
Items Needed: A pair of dumbbells.
Cue 1: Stand erect with your core tensed and retract the Shoulder Blades, making sure that you keep the dumbbells from traveling in front of you as you begin to curl them up to Chest height Keep the Shoulders as still as possible and squeeze the Biceps to create the greatest amount of tension.
Cue 2: Briefly pause at the top of the movement before returning to the start of the exercise.
How Many Dumbbell Incline Curl Variations Can You Think of?
Sorry, I couldn’t resist taking you somewhere different. For this exercise, I wanted to show you how much more effective you can make the standard Dumbbell Curl from top to bottom. You'll notice that once you pass the 90-degree angle with the normal Dumbbell Curl, it become easier.
To counter this, we've gone ahead and broken the rules by adding two light resistance bands to the mix. By adding the ascending tension of the bands, we generate additional tension and force at the top of a movement that blows up the arms like you wouldn't believe.
Target Muscle Group: Biceps
Items Needed: 2 light resistance bands and a pair of dumbbells.
Cue 1: Secure the bands by stepping on one end and wrapping the other end around your palms twice. Pick up both dumbbells with a palm-up grip and set your scapula.
Cue 2: Curl both dumbbells to the top and let one dumbbell return to the start position.
Cue 3: While one dumbbell is static at the top of the movement, curl the other dumbbell back to the top and return the static dumbbell to the start position. Continue alternating which dumbbell stays static at the top and which dumbbell is being curled.
OK, we could just curl until we’re tired and hopefully something good will happen; but let’s become a little more organized and focused on our performance so we can get the best out of every workout.
We’re going to use the very easy and efficient “auto-regulation” training protocol. If you’re new to auto-regulation training, stick with me because this is an extremely effective way of building muscle while managing fatigue.
When you use auto-regulation training, your fatigue is being managed on your performance within a given set.
This means that sometimes you lift more and sometimes less weight for the same amount of reps per set and reps in reserve because naturally, you'll push yourself when you're in an optimal state to perform and when you're not, you pull back.
One important note to make about autoregulation training is that this protocol uses Reps in Reserve as a tool to measure the intensity of effort. If you're new to reps in reserve, don't worry, you'll soon get the hang of this convenient way of tracking workout intensity and measuring how hard a set feels and how many more repetitions you could have achieved to failure.
In addition, this home Bicep workout with dumbbells has variables you can control, which help to develop the skill of rating your workout performance set by set. For example, to help you discover your exertion level you’re asked to perform 10 repetitions per set, aiming to leave no more than 2 reps in reserve, which will ensure you are achieving maximum motor unit recruitment.
To get a better idea of this protocol, after the first set of 10 reps has been completed, you'll assess your performance with the specified 2 reps in reserve in mind. You do this by asking yourself a simple 'yes' or 'no' question after each set: "Am I above or below the Reps in Reserve target?"
If you undershoot your reps in reserve target, for example, you have 3 or more reps in the tank after set one; you will add weight to set two. If you overshoot the reps in reserve target where you have 1 or fewer reps in reserve, you will remove weight for set two. You repeat this same process after each set is completed.
If, after careful consideration, you assess your performance as the same reps in reserve prescribed, i.e., you're not higher or lower than the 2 reps in reserve, then you keep the same load for the following set and ask yourself the same question again after completing the next set.
This way of training will help you continuously assess your performance with a "reps in reserve" benchmark in mind. At first, you may have difficulties rating your reps in reserve as a standalone measurement of performance, but because there's a rep-per-set yardstick given, you only need to assess whether you're higher or lower than the reps in reserve target.
The major advantage of this protocol is that it teaches you how to become an efficient self-coach. It's advised that you make a note of every working set so, over the four-week cycle, you can follow your progress and make the necessary adjustments.
As the weeks move on, what you thought were two repetitions in reserve on week one may eventually feel more like three or four reps in reserve by week four. That is why it is always advised that you log every set in a workout logbook so you can follow your progress; that goes for all muscle groups.
In the above scenario, it doesn't matter if you're always above or below the reps in reserve benchmark; the key is to measure your performance set-by-set and be in a position to adjust the weight accordingly. If you want to use an intensity technique to fire up your Biceps to another level click here.
So that you can measure results by way of performance and gains, I advise that you work in a four-week training cycle, meaning that you train hard over four weeks, and on the fifth week you pull back and take a Deload week to relieve fatigue and give your Tendons and Ligaments time to catch up and heal.
As for sets per exercise, a lot will depend, training level, recovery ability, and overall fatigue accumulation. 3-4 sets per exercise make a great start, but monitor how you feel and how well you recover from workout to workout.
Full Body Workouts: If you do full-body workouts and train Biceps on every session, choose one Bicep exercise per session and one rep amount per set. Once you’ve decided what exercises you are doing, stick with your decision for the full four training weeks.
Here’s an example of what I do below, training five full-body sessions per week and using the autoregulation training protocol.
Day 1 Workout 1: Standing Drag Curl x 3-4 working sets x 6 reps per set
Day 2 Workout 2: The Plate Curl x 3-4 working sets x 8 rep per set
Day 3 Workout 3: Incline Dumbbell Drag Curl & Hold x 3-4 working sets x 10 reps per set
Day 4 = Rest Day
Day 5 Workout 4: Standing Zottman Curl x 3-4 working sets x 7 reps per set
Day 6 Workout 5: Incline Jam Curl x 3-4 working sets x 12 reps per set
Day 7 = Rest Day
I will usually swap out a couple of the exercises for the few I missed on the list on my next cycle.
Home Bicep Workout With Dumbbells Option 2:
You may have a designated day when you train Biceps, or you train them with Back as part of a push/pull split. Here are a few suggestions.
1: If you train the Biceps twice per week, you could split the Home Bicep Workout With Dumbbells list in half and do the first three movements on workout one and the second part on workout two. I would also choose two reps per set ranges, one for each workout session.
Here’s an example:
Workout One: 3-4 working sets per exercise, and 6-8 reps per set.
· Standing Dumbbell Drag Curl
· Incline Jam Curl
· Standing Band Bell Curl & Hold
Workout Two: 3-4 working sets per exercise, and 10-12 reps per set.
· Incline Dumbbell Drag Curl & Hold
· Plate Curl
· Standing Zottman Curl
Reading this home Bicep workout with dumbbells article is one thing…Putting what you’ve read into action is another. Slip these exercises into your next home Bicep workout with dumbbells and then report back and tell me how you got on.