Extension of arms with a dumbbell from behind the head


The dumbbell extension is the best exercise to tighten the lagging triceps and improve the relief of this muscle.

Benefit exercises

Extending the arm with a dumbbell allows you to target work on the lagging triceps for the proportionality of the arms. In addition, performing this exercise perfectly works out the upper part of each of the three heads of the triceps, which leads to a thickening of the top and middle of the triceps muscle. Often, arm extensions are performed with the aim of separating (separating) all three heads of the triceps from each other and separating them from the deltoids.

Arm extension with weights will improve results in those sports where this movement (arm extension) is the main one. In particular, by doing this exercise, you will make progress in sports such as tennis, volleyball, gymnastics, wrestling and boxing, basketball, pole vaulting and many others.

Hand extension technique

Correct exercise technique:

1. Sit on a bench, rest your feet on the floor, and lean your back on the back of the bench. If the bench is without a back, straighten your back and bend a little in the lower back. Grab a dumbbell with a neutral grip and raise it above your head. Now bend your arm at the elbow and move it behind your head so that the palm is facing forward and the thumb is lower than the rest. The chin is parallel to the floor, the back is straight, the lower back is slightly arched, the elbow looks vertically upwards. This is the starting position.

2. Inhale, hold your breath and, tensing your triceps, gently straighten your arm with a dumbbell.

3. At the top of the movement, exhale and hold for 1-2 seconds. Then do the next repetition.

4. After doing the required number of repetitions, take the dumbbell in your other hand and repeat the exercise for it.

It is important:

Movement occurs only in the elbow joint, all other parts of the body must remain motionless, otherwise the effectiveness of the exercise will decrease and the risk of injury will increase.

Do not round your back, thereby you increase the load on the lower back and shoulder joint and risk injury.

Do not bend your wrist during the exercise, this is fraught with injury. The wrist and forearm should be in one line.

Depending on the angle of rotation of the forearm at the top of the movement, the load on each of the triceps heads changes. That is, by changing this angle, you can achieve the maximum contraction of each of the triceps heads:

  • Without turning the forearm, you will achieve maximum work of the long head of the triceps.
  • If you turn the forearm with the palm outward (away from the head) while lifting the weight, then you will shift the emphasis of the load to the lateral (lateral) head.
  • Conversely, turning the forearm so that the palm is facing inward (at the head) maximizes the load on the medial (inner) head of the triceps.


Standing arm extensions. In this option, it will be easier for you to keep the body upright, but it is more difficult to keep it stationary. And from the point of view of the load, there is no fundamental difference between performing ‘standing’ or ‘sitting’, so do whatever is easier for you.

Working muscles during arm extensions

  • triceps (all three heads)

Alternative exercises

  • french press
  • Extensions on the block
  • Push-ups from the bench

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