How to build big biceps

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One big key attribute that significantly stands out in a crowd is big biceps. How to build big biceps has been a commonly asked question and today we are going to take a look at how you have been training your biceps and what you might need to do differently to achieve better results.

Do you like the appeal of shapely muscular biceps? Does your significant other appreciate muscular arms on you? Well if you answered yes to both of these questions, continue reading and maybe within the next month or two you will start to notice significant gains in your arm development.

You might be thinking that it will be a little difficult to get decent results without working out at a gym, many people have been training at the gym despite the covid pandemic, but if you are a little leary about training in a public place and worrying about social distancing, there is the option of training at home.

You can accomplish much by weight training at home with just a set of free weights, a barbell and a set of adjustable dumbbells. With a little extra space and for a little more money you can purchase your own home gym and get all the workouts in at home without ever having to set foot outside the front door.

Whether you train at home or at the gym, the information in this article will get you going on developing a muscular set of arms, all you will need is just a little patience and persistence once you have finished reading this article.

Developing your own set of guns

I remember the time when I saw Lee Haney in person and was nothing short of being amazed at the size of his arms. It is one thing to see the amazing development of these guys in the magazines, but once you see them in person, it can create a whole new perspective.

After meeting Lee Haney in person, it gave me a great incentive to keep pushing harder in the gym and training more diligently to obtain better results so that I could make astounding gains and try my best to look as impressive as him.

Did it work? Well obviously I never developed the Mr Olympia type of physique that he has built for himself but I have created a life filled with setting goals and meeting those goals through training, and it has given me the opportunity to be a motivation for others.

So if it has been in your best interest to develop a huge set of muscular arms because someone that has inspired you to do so, don’t try to be like someone else because of the accomplishments they have achieved, achieve your own goals and be happy with your own ability and what you can achieve with your own tools.

Dumbbell preacher curls
Dumbbell preacher curls

Should you go heavy?

I have heard so many aspiring bodybuilders ask “should I train biceps with a light or heavyweight”? I believe that the best thing to keep in mind is to obtain the best of both worlds when it comes to training light and heavy.

Training heavy with a rep range of 8-10 reps per set is a great way to stimulate muscle growth, but you can achieve a much greater muscle pump if you incorporate the system of training where you also use lighter weights and higher reps, such as 15-25 reps per set.

It is never a good idea to get set with performing one specific type of training when it may be a better idea to incorporate different ways of training periodically to keep your muscle growth consistent and moving forward.

Training heavy is a great way to build muscle size, but it should never be at the expense of proper form and maintaining good technique. We as individuals have different body types and our bodies react differently to different ways of training.

One style of training may work good for one person, but that isn’t to say that style of training will work good for the next person.

For instance, some people can obtain a great bicep pump from following a rep strategy of 8-12 reps per set, while another person may need to use lighter weights and go for a higher range of 20-25 reps per set in order to achieve a good muscle pump.

Never rely on what works good for one person while something completely different may be the answer to what you need to develop into your training schedule that will create the best results for you.

Go both ways

When in doubt, it never hurts to ask. The only dumb question is the one that never gets asked. How can you know what is the best approach for developing muscle size when there are many content creators out there that directly tell you to train a specific way for a specific result.

In order to know what is the best way for you to achieve the results that you are looking for is to train instinctively to follow a method of trying different training principles and figuring out which one works best for you.

If you have been training for a good amount of time and have seen minimal results, ask yourself if you are achieving a good pump. If you are not achieving a muscle pump that is stimulating, chances are you will need to drop some weight and do higher reps.

Different rep ranges can stimulate different muscle groups in different ways and can stimulate muscle growth in different people at different rates.

Speaking of both ways, you can train with a system of going heavy for 8-10 reps for one week and then switch to a system of training that you are using lighter weights for higher reps the next week.

Incline dumbbell curls for biceps training
Incline dumbbell curls for biceps training

What are the best exercises?

Far too often people spend too much time worrying about what the best exercise is to develop big biceps. What exercises you do is an important part of your training, but more importantly is your training technique and keeping your biceps under continues tension.

One of the best ways that I have found to stimulate muscle growth is incorporating lighter weights for higher reps such as 15 to 25 reps per set and keeping continuous tension on your muscles.

This is an excellent way to stimulate your muscles into growth. Instead of relying purely on one system to develop your muscles, often it can be a better idea to switch back and forth between two systems to keep your muscles guessing as to what you will throw at them next.

Variety is the spice of life. Wouldn’t it be rather boring if you ate the exact same meal everyday instead of eating different things from meal to meal and day-to-day? Well it should be the same way for your training.

Doing the same old repetitious thing day in and day out for your weight training would become rather boring after a while and your muscles will get bored with performing the same old thing every training session.

That’s why it’s a good idea to switch your exercises around periodically, but it should also be equally important to keep your training program fresh by stimulating your muscles in different ways such as rep ranges you follow.

Some exercises do work better than others for developing muscle size. For example, barbell curls have always been known as the king of bicep builders, but it is also necessary to include a wide range of other biceps training exercises to stimulate your muscles to the fullest.

If someone told you that the best exercise for building biceps would be barbell curls and to just stick with that exercise, don’t be fooled into thinking that you should base your whole bicep training routine around doing that one exercise.

If you continually train while keeping only one exercise in mind and performing the same rep system, sooner than later your progress will come to a screeching halt and you will suffer from lost time while you could have been keeping the muscle gains coming by following a more sensible approach of keeping your training alive with a variety of exercises.

Reverse grip chins for biceps
Reverse grip chins for biceps

Bodyweight exercises for size

Bodyweight exercises come in handy at the gym and at home, but if you are uncomfortable with the idea of training in public and enjoy getting your workouts in at home on your own time, then bodyweight exercises are a pretty good option, especially if you don’t have workout equipment in your home or don’t have the money to spend on expensive weight training equipment.

Compound exercises have always been known for being an exceptional way of adding muscle size, but there are not a lot of compound exercises that you can incorporate into your bicep training program.

For the most part, just about any bicep training exercise that you can think of are isolation exercises, simply meaning that the biceps are the only muscle being targeted.

When it comes to the best bicep exercises for building size, barbell curls have always been known as being the king of bicep builders. But from a standpoint of building size, it can be a great benefit to incorporate compound training to your biceps program.

Two excellent compound training exercises for building biceps would be the reverse grip chins and the barbell drag curls. There may be other ideas that you have, but these are two excellent ways to incorporate compound training into your bicep program.

Reverse grip chins as pictured above are when you take a reverse grip with the palms of your hands facing toward you with a shoulder with grip, pull yourself up until your chin reaches over the bar flexing your biceps and then return to the bottom position where you are extending your arms at full length to stretch your biceps.

Barbell drag curls are performed similar to doing the barbell curls, except instead of keeping your elbows positioned at your sides and curling the bar up, instead you are pulling your elbows back keeping the barbell in line with the front of your core dragging the bar upwards.

Performing both of these exercises will enable you to lift more weight than you naturally would be able to when doing the standard curling exercises. This process of lifting more weight will enable you to stimulate your biceps into further muscle growth by overloading your biceps with an overall weight lifted throughout your bicep training session.

Here is an example of overloading your biceps with an overall weight accumulated through one training session.

  • Barbell curls, four sets, 10 reps, 80 lb =3200 pounds
  • Dumbbell curls, four sets, 10 reps, 35 lb dumbbells =2800 pounds
  • Concentration curls, three sets 10 reps, 30 lb dumbbell =1800 pounds

Overall weight lifted =7,800 pounds

  • Reverse grip chins, four sets, 10 reps, 150 lb =6000 pounds
  • Body drag curls, four sets, 10 reps, 150 lb = 6000
  • Barbell curls, three sets, 10 reps, 80 lb = 2,400

Overall weight lifted =14,400 pounds

Your own personal overall weight lifted will be different from the example above, the above is purely for example purposes.

Preacher curls for biceps
Preacher curls for biceps


If you are new to weight training, you might need to spend a little time perfecting some of these exercises, but like anything else, with a little practice it shouldn’t take too long to get into the swing of these exercises and then you can start to implement a little of your own technique to customize your own training program.

You should also include setting goals to achieve better results. I have seen far too often many people not setting clear and concise goals for their weight training, another necessity is keping a journal, or by another name is a (training log). A training log will help you to keep track of how much weight you are lifting and how many reps you are doing for each set.

Following these two steps will help you with achieving better results for all your hard efforts.

You can further customize your training by supplementing your diet, you can check out one of my reviews on supplementation by clicking on this link.

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to leave a comment in the box below and I will get back to you as soon as possible.


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