Dumbbell Bicep Curls

Image of how to do a bicep curl

Introduction

Type: Strength

Main Muscle Worked: Biceps

Secondary muscles: Forearms

Equipment: Dumbbell

Level: Beginner

This exercise works well when combined with hammer curls which can be found here: Hammer Curls

What are dumbbell Bicep Curls?

The arm curl, dumbbell bicep curl or biceps curl is a highly recognizable weight training exercise that works the muscles of the upper arm and also, the lower arm and is probably the most familiar weight training exercise around.
When someone walks into a workout room and they aren’t sure what to do, they usually go straight to the bicep curl. Why? It’s simple and very effective, and can be done by anyone. It’s a great exercise for seeing results in strength and for most importantly, size.

There are many ways you can change the workout by changing up the speed and tempo to create more time under tension for your biceps giving them more strength for the time you are doing the exercise, I recommend starting with the standing alternating dumbbell arm curl which is shown below, which you can do anywhere. Curls are a typical exercise used in upper body strength exercise routines.

For extra safety, lift heavier weights and support I recommend buying a pair of wrist straps as they help a lot, the ones I use are here: Wrist straps

Muscles Worked in dumbbell Bicep Curls

Bicep Curls
primary: biceps brachii, brachialis

secondary: brachioradialis

Benefits of dumbbell Bicep Curls

The main benefit: bicep curls or dumbbell bicep curls can increase your biceps size and strength, which mainly benefits you when doing pulling movements.

Some people have an easier time growing their arms size. They can grow arms with minimal reps, and maybe compound movements are all they need for arms training. While compound movements can grow the arms to an extent, the fact of the matter is that many lifters also need isolation movements to grow their arms.

Curls work the biceps muscles at the front of the upper arm, and also the muscles of the lower arm—the brachialis, and brachioradialis. You use these muscles anytime you pick something up, which is common throughout daily life.The muscle definition and increased strength are often noticeable within a few sessions, which is very motivating.

How to do dumbbell Bicep Curls

If you need a dumbbell one can be purchased here: Dumbbells

Bicep Curls

  1. 1. Start by standing up in a good posture with a dumbbell in each hand, squeezing the handle of the dumbbell as hard as possible.
  2. 2.  Hinge forward very slightly at your hips and take a breath in.
  3. 3. Breathing out, start to curl the dumbbell up.
  4. 4.  At the top of the movement, contract your bicep as much as possible, getting a good peak squeeze.
  5. 5.  Breathing in, lower your hand back to the start point, then repeat steps 3 and 4 for the other arm.

Repeat for desired reps

Mistakes commonly made in dumbbell bicep curls

Wrist Position

When performing the dumbbell bicep curl your wrists should always be in a neutral position, not bent up or down. If you find that you cannot maintain a neutral position throughout, this means that the weights are too heavy.

Too Fast

You should also focus on good form rather than executing the rep quickly, at least when starting out. You should lift slowly and smoothly so that you feel the burn.

Momentum

You should not use your momentum to lift the weights as this actually reduces the effectiveness of the exercise. Quickly moving the weights allows momentum to reduce the tension within the muscles, especially at the top of the lift which reduces how much your muscles end up working in the exercise.

Elbow Position

Your elbows should not move during the dumbbell bicep curl as they should be close to the side of your body at all times.

Going Too Far Down

When performing the dumbbell bicep curl do not pull the dumbbell so far back that the forearm moves past a vertical position.

Safety when performing dumbbell bicep curls

The dumbbell bicep curl is recommended for most people. Although if you have any arm injury or experience any pain during the motion, do not continue and stop the exercise. Although you should still talk to your doctor or physical therapist about if bicep curls are suitable for you.

When performing dumbbell bicep curls you can expect to feel fatigue and possibly burning in your biceps after a few reps, and this is to get your muscles to get stronger and grow. However, do not force extra repetitions once you are unable to perform the dumbbell bicep curls with good form. You should then take a rest before doing the next set.

Also, do not lift a heavy weight to begin with, don’t rush to get to heavier weights before you’re strong enough to do it with ease. Using a weight which is to heavy for you can result in Injury to the elbow or wrist, and that will affect your entire workout routine.

Variations of dumbbell Bicep Curls

Variations of the bicep curls include standing position, seated and incline seated. The barbell and cable machine are used in a similar set of curl exercises. You can use these variations to challenge your biceps in different ways.

There are also several variations of Bicep curls where you can change the type of weight you use, including kettlebells, barbell, or a cable machine.

Kettlebell Bicep Curl

Standing kettlebell curl

  1. 1. Start by standing up in a good posture with a kettlebell in one hand, squeezing the handle of the dumbbell as hard as possible.
  2. 2. Hinge forward very slightly at your hips and take a breath in.
  3. 3. Breathing out, start to curl the kettlebell up.
  4. 4. At the top of the movement, contract your bicep as much as possible, getting a good peak squeeze.
  5. 5. Breathing in, lower your hand back to the start point, then repeat steps 3 and 4 for the other arm.

Repeat for desired reps.

Incline Bicep Curl

Incline Dumbbell Curl

  1. 1. start by sitting on an incline bench and holding a dumbbell in each hand.
  2. 2. let your arms hang at your sides and with palms facing each other.
  3. 3. your feet should be flat on the floor.
  4. 4. bend at the elbow and curl both dumbbells simultaneously up to shoulder level, rotating the hand inward during the curl.
  5. 5. after a short pause, slowly lower the weights to the starting position.

Repeat for desired reps.

Write below in the comments your opinion on the bicep curl, if it works for you and any questions you might have.

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