How to train biceps at home

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These days it can be difficult to get a decent workout in at the gym with everything going on in the world the way it is these days, but today I am going to talk about how to train biceps at home simply with just a pair of dumbbells in your own living room.

Weight training at home is definitely a different ball game than getting your workout in at the gym because it can be difficult to pull up that needed motivation when training at home as compared to when you work out at the gym, you have your training buddies and a lot more equipment at your disposal.

You do have a lot more equipment in the gym, and you are exposed to elements that can get your motivation pulsing through your veins when working out at the gym, but sometimes unfortunately we have to settle for what we are able to do versus what we would like to do.

Simply allowing yourself only a pair of dumbbells to get a workout in may not seem like a lot to base your workouts around, but when putting in a good workout with just a pair of dumbbells, you can actually get in a pretty good workout, a solid pump and feel good about what you have done afterwards.

Adjustable dumbbells are great for in home training and making quick changes to the weight.
An adjustable dumbbell with spinning collars and assorted weights

What you will need

I have been working out at home for a considerable amount of time and haven’t set foot in a gym. So you can personally take it from me on training at home with just a pair of dumbbells and still achieve the results that you are looking for.

I have different components for weight training in my own home, but often I find myself just taking a pair of dumbbells into the living room so that I can get a workout in and not spend time separated from my wife. Just a pair of dumbbells, a chair and a television in front of me with the company of my wife is all I have been using for my workouts.

I use a pair of adjustable dumbbells with quick clamps which make it easy for me to change weights between sets and not spend too much time resting while some older sets have a bolt in the collar that you need to mess around loosening and tightening with a wrench.

You never want to spend too much time complicating your workouts with things that are going to be slowing you up and causing you to spend more time resting between sets when you want to keep moving at a quicker pace between sets to keep your heart rate going.

Other than using a pair of adjustable dumbbells, I also use a simple straight back chair that is not on wheels, I use this as my multi-purpose bench which I can sit on and use for other exercises such as bench dips and push-ups with my feet elevated.

Today’s post I am directing my attention around training biceps so we won’t be getting into push-ups with our feet elevated or bench dips. But using a pair of adjustable dumbbells and a chair will work pretty well for getting in a good bicep workout at home.

This picture is of a man holding a pair of black dumbbells doing dumbbell curls with palms facing upward.
Dumbbell curls with palms facing upwards

Standard dumbbell curls

When performing the standard dumbbell curls, I will generally do these sitting down and you can keep them fresh each workout by incorporating various versions such as dumbbell curls rotating your palms from the inward position to facing upwards at the top of the curl.

Another version of the standard dumbbell curls you can use is keeping the palms of your hands facing upwards, this way instead of getting a rotating motion in the curl, you are keeping your palms upwards directing continuous tension on your biceps throughout the move.

A third variation for the dumbbell curls is called the hammer curl. Hammer curls you will be keeping the palms of your hands facing inward throughout the exercise. This exercise is great for working the long head of biceps but is also a great exercise for working the forearms.

I find it best to not perform the same variation of dumbbell curls every workout because your workouts can grow boring after a while and if you keep things fresh and new, this will help with avoiding over training and you will be keeping a level of excitement in your workouts.

Three men doing dumbbell curls one man is sitting down and the other two are doing standing alternate dumbbell curls.
Alternate dumbbell curl variation

When I form my bicep training workouts, I like to do three exercises, one where I am in a straight up and down position keeping my elbows at my sides such as the standard dumbbell curls, the second one we will be covering next is where you keep your elbows in back of you and you are directing the tension to your biceps at a different angle.

  • Perform full range of motion with every rep
  • Maintain a full stretch at the bottom of every exercise
  • Flex your biceps at the top of every exercise and hold for a count of one
  • Do 8 to 12 reps per set
  • Use a weight that you can maintain good form but have to push hard to obtain 8 to 12 reps

The amount of sets that you perform for this exercise should be determined by your experience level, if you are new to training on up to 6 months of experience, I would suggest an overall four to five sets per training session. If you are intermediate, 6 months to a year, I would suggest 10 sets per workout, and if you are experienced, 1 year on up, I would suggest 12 to 15 sets for biceps for workouts.

Incline dumbbell curls

Incline dumbbell curls is another great exercise that targets the long head of the bicep which therefore will contribute more to the peak of your biceps. Often when performing incline dumbbell curls, you think of using an incline bench.

Contrary to the standard way of doing things, I have been used to doing incline dumbbell curls sitting in a straight back chair for a while now, but this subtle change that I make when performing these actually works pretty well and I have always really enjoyed doing this exercise.

When you sit in the chair, instead of having your butt scooted back as you would when normally sitting in a chair, sit slightly forward in the seat and lean your upper torso back against the backrest of the chair so that when you let your arms hang down at their sides they are hanging to the back of you.

A benefit to performing this exercise is you will be forced to perform good strict form which you will be keeping the attention on your biceps instead of directing it to your back when cheating the weight up.

Cheating in your curls is something that you will want to avoid because curling for biceps is something that you want to be targeting the attention to your biceps, and if you spend time cheating the weight up, it would be best if you dropped some weight and spent a little more time concentrating on doing proper form for best results.

  • Perform full range of motion with every rep
  • Maintain a full stretch at the bottom of every exercise
  • Flex your biceps at the top of every exercise and hold for a count of one
  • Do 8 to 12 reps per set
  • Use a weight that you can maintain good form but have to push hard to obtain 8 to 12 reps

Concentration curls

Concentration curls are a great exercise for targeting the short head of your biceps. Any exercise where you have your elbows to the front of you, such as concentration curls, Scott curls and lying cable curls, you will be targeting the short head of your biceps.

There are two different variations that I use when performing the concentration curl, I don’t necessarily stick to doing just one but frequently like to mix it up and incorporate both versions for variety in my workouts.

Picture of a man sitting in a chair holding a black dumbbell resting his elbow against his inner leg doing dumbbell curls.
Seated variation of the concentration curl.

The first version is the (seated version) of the concentration curls where you sit in the chair with your feet approximately 2 ½ to 3 feet apart with your elbow resting against your inner thigh.

Start with your arm at arms length and the dumbbell should be just short of touching the floor, slowly curl the weight upwards and flex your bicep at the top position holding for a count of one and return the dumbbell back to starting position.

The second version of the concentration curl is the standing position which is personally my favorite way of doing this exercise.

First start out with your feet approximately 2 ½ to 3 feet apart in a bent over position. Rest one hand on your knee while you grab a dumbbell with your other hand and let your arm hang down at length with the dumbbell sort of touching floor.

Once in this position, you will want to start curling the weight upwords slowly until you reach the top position, squeezing your bicep at the top of the curl and hold for a count of one and then return to the bottom of the exercise.

When you extend your arm back down to the bottom of the position, you will also want to make sure that you are getting a full stretch for your biceps which will help with keeping your biceps stretched.

Keeping your biceps stretched out will help with reducing tightness in your biceps and will help with increasing your range of motion, so it is always a good idea to reach a full stretch for the biceps at the bottom of every curling exercise.

  • Perform full range of motion with every rep
  • Maintain a full stretch at the bottom of every exercise
  • Flex your biceps at the top of every exercise and hold for a count of one
  • Do 8 to 12 reps per set
  • Use a weight that you can maintain good form but have to push hard to obtain 8 to 12 reps

Conclusion

Whether you are training at home or at the gym, you will always need to maintain the proper mindset. Without a proper mindset, it will be difficult to continue with a structured weight training program and expect to receive long-term results.

This can especially be true if you are training at home because without the proper setup of equipment and people to train with, it can be difficult to maintain in a long-term weight training program when simply training at home.

Making it to the gym to get your workouts in can be a very important lifeline to you, but with the way circumstances are these days, if training at the gym is what you are used to, you might have to give training at home a shot with more and more places closing down for safety purposes.

Along with following a structured training program, to receive best results it will be necessary to structure a healthy diet to make sure that you are taking in enough of the proper quality whole foods that will supply your system with the nutrients it needs.

Many times people find that they aren’t getting enough of the nutrients and their whole foods or they’re having a difficult time taking in enough protein from the general food that they are eating so they will turn to taking a protein supplement to help them with their daily nutritional needs.


To check into this for further information, you can read one of my product reviews on quality protein supplementation by clicking on this link.

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1 thought on “How to train biceps at home”

  1. Sometimes we all need a little more motivation to keep our training going, I hope that this post has supplied you with some beneficial information to incorporate into your own training program as well as a little added motivation, keep your training going in your dreams alive.

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