How to Get Big Biceps: The Ultimate Guide to Building Massive Arms


How to Get Big Biceps: The Ultimate Guide to Building Massive Arms

 Are you tired of looking in the mirror and seeing puny arms staring back at you? Do you dream of having big, bulging biceps that command attention? Well, you've come to the right place. In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the most effective strategies and exercises to help you transform your biceps into powerhouses of muscle.

The Importance of Proper Technique and Form

Before we dive into the specific exercises, it's crucial to understand the importance of proper technique and form. Many people make the mistake of using heavy weights without focusing on the quality of their movements. Remember, it's not about how much weight you lift; it's about how effectively you target your biceps.

When performing biceps exercises, always maintain a controlled tempo and full range of motion. Avoid swinging your body or using momentum to lift the weights. Instead, concentrate on squeezing your biceps at the top of each movement and lowering the weights slowly to maximize time under tension.

Exercise 1: Close-Grip Chin-Up, Accentuated Eccentric

Chin-ups are often referred to as the upper-body squat because they engage multiple muscle groups, including the lats, traps, rhomboids, forearms, and biceps. To take your chin-ups to the next level and build bigger biceps, incorporate the accentuated eccentric technique.

Here's how to perform the close-grip chin-up with accentuated eccentric:

  1. Use a grip that is approximately shoulder-width or slightly narrower.
  2. Slow down the eccentric (negative) phase of the movement, taking 3-5 seconds to lower yourself down.
  3. Aim for 4 sets of 5-8 reps with 90 seconds to two minutes of rest between sets.
  4. If you can complete more than 10 reps, consider adding weight to challenge yourself further.
  5. To maintain healthy elbows, incorporate rings and various grip tools into your chin-up routine.

Remember, the key to building bigger biceps is to create mechanical tension by slowing down the lowering phase of the exercise. This technique ensures that your muscles are working harder and experiencing greater stress, leading to more significant growth.

Exercise 2: Pinwheel Curl

Pinwheel curls, also known as cross-body hammer curls, target the brachialis, a muscle that lies underneath the biceps. By incorporating pinwheel curls into your routine, you can go heavier than with typical hammer curls, allowing for greater muscle activation and growth.

To perform pinwheel curls:

  1. Hold two dumbbells at your sides, using a grip slightly heavier than what you would use for hammer curls.
  2. Curl the weight across your body towards the opposite shoulder, maintaining control throughout the movement.
  3. Focus on the eccentric phase, lowering the dumbbell in 2-3 seconds.
  4. Aim for 3-4 sets of 8-10 reps per arm, with 60-90 seconds of rest between sets.

Pinwheel curls provide a unique stimulus to the brachialis, promoting substantial muscle growth. By controlling the eccentric phase, you increase time under tension and enhance the muscle-building stimulus.

Exercise 3: Iso Dynamic Biceps Curl

If you're struggling to feel your biceps during your workouts, the iso dynamic biceps curl is a game-changer. This exercise combines an isometric contraction with a standard biceps curl, helping you recruit more motor units and improve your mind-muscle connection.

Here's how to perform the iso dynamic biceps curl:

  1. Sit on a bench and select a weight that you can curl for 15 reps.
  2. Curl the weight up to a 90-degree angle and squeeze the dumbbells as hard as possible to create an irradiation stimulus.
  3. Hold the squeeze for 15-30 seconds to maximize muscle fiber recruitment.
  4. After the hold, perform 8-12 reps until you reach technical failure.
  5. Aim for 3 sets of 15-30 second holds, followed by 8-12 reps, with 60 seconds of rest between sets.

Incorporating the iso dynamic biceps curl into your routine will not only help you build bigger biceps but also improve your mind-muscle connection, ensuring that you feel the targeted muscles working with each rep.

Exercise 4: Incline Dumbbell Curl with Mid-Set Stretch

If you're looking for a pump like no other, the incline dumbbell curl with a mid-set stretch is the exercise for you. By starting in a fully-stretched position and incorporating a stretch between sets, you amplify the training response and stimulate significant muscle growth.

Follow these steps to perform the incline dumbbell curl with mid-set stretch:

  1. Set an adjustable bench between 45-75 degrees and hold dumbbells at your sides.
  2. Keep your head back and maintain the stretch on your biceps throughout the movement.
  3. Use a weight that allows you to perform 15-20 curls with control.
  4. Perform 5 curls with a controlled eccentric tempo, then squeeze the dumbbells while allowing a full stretch at the bottom for 10-15 seconds.
  5. Repeat the process, aiming for a total of 15 reps with a 10-15 second stretch every 5 reps.
  6. Complete 2-3 sets of the incline dumbbell curl with mid-set stretch as a finisher in your upper-body or arms workout.

The incline dumbbell curl with mid-set stretch provides a unique stimulus to your biceps, resulting in a skin-splitting pump and increased muscle growth.

Exercise 5: Dumbbell Spider Curl

Spider curls are an excellent exercise for targeting the short head of the biceps and creating metabolic stress, which promotes muscle growth. By maintaining constant tension and a specific elbow position throughout the movement, you can effectively engage and develop your biceps.

To perform the dumbbell spider curl:

  1. Hold the dumbbell straight down in front of you, maintaining a neutral spine.
  2. Perform a controlled curl, pausing with the dumbbell at your nose for 1-2 seconds.
  3. Aim for 3-4 sets of 8-10 reps, with 45 seconds of rest between sets.

By incorporating the dumbbell spider curl into your routine, you'll experience a significant increase in metabolic stress and improve your mind-muscle connection, leading to greater biceps growth.

Exercise 6: Kettlebell Concentration Hammer Curl

If you're looking to target your brachialis and smaller muscles around your hands, wrists, and forearms, the kettlebell concentration hammer curl is an excellent choice. This exercise requires a crushing grip and a slow, controlled tempo to stabilize the kettlebell and create maximal stress throughout the movement.

Here's how to perform the kettlebell concentration hammer curl:

  1. In a seated position, grab a lighter kettlebell and position your elbow against your inner thigh.
  2. Squeeze the kettlebell as hard as possible, lock your wrist into place, and drive your elbow back into your leg.
  3. Perform the curl with a 2-3 second concentric and 2-3 second eccentric.
  4. Aim for 2 sets of 10-15 reps per arm towards the end of your workout.

The kettlebell concentration hammer curl targets the brachialis and smaller muscles in the arms, helping you build bigger biceps and improve overall arm strength.

Charles Poliquin's Key Moves for Bigger Biceps

Charles Poliquin, a renowned strength coach, shared his favorite biceps exercises for building massive arms. While there are dozens of exercises to choose from, these five are Poliquin's top picks:

  1. One-arm dumbbell preacher curl: This exercise isolates the biceps and minimizes cheating. Sit on a preacher bench with one arm fully extended and curl the weight while keeping tension on the muscle throughout each rep.

  2. Incline dumbbell curl: This exercise effectively targets the long head of the biceps. Recline on an incline bench with a dumbbell in each hand, curling the dumbbells up while keeping your elbows still.

  3. Dumbbell concentration curl: This exercise can be performed in a standing or sitting position. Sit on a bench, lean over, and grab a dumbbell. Curl the dumbbell slowly and deliberately until full range is completed.

  4. Close-grip chin-up: Grasp the chin-up bar with a close grip and pull yourself up slowly. Lower yourself back down with control to maximize the tension on your biceps.

  5. Seated Zottman curl: Grasp two dumbbells while sitting on a flat bench. Fully extend your arms downward and curl the weights while keeping your palms extended away from your body. Slowly lower the dumbbells, maintaining proper form throughout the exercise.

Incorporating these exercises into your biceps routine will help you target different areas of your biceps and achieve maximum growth.

How to Get the Most Out of Biceps Exercises

In addition to incorporating the right exercises into your routine, there are a few key tips to maximize your biceps growth:

  1. Lockdown your form: Focus on isolating your biceps and minimizing the involvement of other muscle groups. Maintain proper alignment and technique throughout each exercise to ensure that your biceps are doing the majority of the work.

  2. Vary your angles: Target your biceps from different angles to fully engage all muscle fibers. Incorporate exercises like incline bench curls, standing curls, preacher curls, and high cable curls to work your biceps from various positions.

  3. Embrace thick-handled training: Using thick-handled equipment, such as Fat Gripz, can increase forearm activation and enhance biceps recruitment. This added challenge will result in greater muscle growth and a more intense pump.

  4. Focus on full range of motion: Perform exercises through a full range of motion to maximize muscle activation and growth. Avoid partial reps and prioritize controlled, full-range movements to fully engage your biceps.

By implementing these tips and incorporating a variety of exercises into your routine, you can effectively target your biceps and achieve the big, powerful arms you desire.


Building big biceps requires a combination of proper technique, targeted exercises, and consistent effort. By incorporating exercises like close-grip chin-ups, pinwheel curls, iso dynamic biceps curls, incline dumbbell curls with mid-set stretches, dumbbell spider curls, and kettlebell concentration hammer curls into your routine, you can effectively target your biceps and stimulate muscle growth.

Remember to prioritize proper form, focus on a full range of motion, and vary your angles to engage all muscle fibers. Additionally, adopting techniques endorsed by renowned strength coaches like Charles Poliquin can help take your biceps training to the next level.

So, what are you waiting for? Follow this ultimate guide to building massive arms and start your journey towards bigger, stronger biceps today.


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