T Nation

How Many Sets for Forearms?


I am not sure how many sets i should do for forearms as i have no experience training them directly much except for a few sets of hammer curls and reverse curls at the end of arms day. But i was thinking of training them more now by also adding some wrist curls.
The thing is i am not sure how many sets is enough,is 6 sets enough? 3 reverse curls and 3 wrist curls or maybe higher 9-12? 6 for extensors and 6 for flexors?


A lot of people are going to tell you that direct training isn't needed and without knowing your current stats and lifting numbers, no one can really even tell you that.


Don't be so hasty! It would look silly if he didn't bring his forearms up to par with his 14" biceps :stuck_out_tongue:

That's reminds me, I need to start working on mine lol


Fat gripz might be for you.



forearms grow from squeezing and isometrics


I read in a few articles here that your poundages in curls get better if you have stronger forearms.Btw,my arms are 15 inches now, still a long way to go they grew a inch over a few months considering i came out from surgury losing 10kg and not working out for 8 months,starting from scratch. How big are yours?


Mine are over 9000...


I mean the member "it's just me" since he brought it up....


They hover around the 17" mark now that I'm lean (that's without the fictional 1-2" that people usually add on the internet haha)...

Yeah I seem to remember PX saying something along those lines too. I'd say though that if your forearms aren't giving out while doing curls and what not, they aren't holding you back. I can understand if you've been plateauing at a certain arm size/strength, and then focus on bringing weak parts up, but not in the middle of a stage where there's still plenty growth/strength potential.

Just build up the poundages (we're not talking about deadlifts/back exercises here). If you're still curling the 30lbs dumbbells, you just need to progress. That's all (and that probably includes getting diet in order 1st)...forearms strength will come along very quickly via indirect stimulus.

Not that I want to put you off or anything, you can still do forearm exercises, just keep your perspective (focus on what's more important).


That's good,thx for the reply. Yeah will do that, i think i will add few sets of reverse curls after biceps curls since they also hit brachialis well and stagger wrist curls between pressing exercises like CT does. Btw, about wrist curls, what is there a difference in activation when doing them supinated,pronated or neutral?


I usually do my reverse curls and hammer curls BEFORE i do any other curling. It just feels better that way for me I guess.

Anyways, for forearms I just throw in a few sets of standing wrist curls. Grab the bar like your gonna shrug but squeeze them forearms instead. These usually leave my forearms pretty sore. I use straps as well.


I'm not the best to ask about forearm training, my brother's keen though - trains them 2-3x/week with about 2 sets a time after warm-ups (used to do low reps but moved onto higher reps, 15-20, mainly for safety). He does grip work (thick handle with hanging weights), and wrist curls/reverse wrist curls. Took a good while before I noticed his forearms got well developed (probably just over a year). He also doesn't use straps until the last few sets of big exercises like shrugs/rows/deadlifts.

"is there a difference in activation when doing them supinated,pronated or neutral?"

Different muscles worked? Is that not obvious? :wink:

How is your progress getting on btw, like with your main exercises/bodyweight?


Yard work.



i can only imagine what OP looks like, and he chooses to focus on forearms


Well i was out two weeks due to back injury but it was not training related,i slept bad lol.
My current bodyweight is 157-160 lbs. But due to the surgury i have still until july to go before i am allowed to go all out on weights and i can't do a few exercises which pressures my nose.
I have all my abs showing so i have quite low bf rate.
Here is a little stats:
Incline db benchpress: 70kg for 6 reps,total
PJR pullover:30-35kg
Meadows style kickbacks, 11.5kg's in each hand, 8-10 reps
Incline offset curls :16kg for 6 reps,in each hand
Chest supported db rows with low incline :60kg,total
db shrugs,don't really count the reps but i think i do like 6-8, with 20kg in each hand
db seated lateral raises 12.5kgs,in each hand 6 reps

I don't remember how much i front squatted and RDL'd,as i took at break when i was resting my lower back.

I haven't platued yet and keep incresing the weight and getting stronger,progress have been quite good as i can see a changes in the mirror


For 6'3, i would consider my forearms to be pretty big. I have never done a set of direct forearm work in my life.

At 15" arms, Im sure no one is looking at you and thinking "damn that guys huge, but whats with those puny forearms?"


i do bar holds. i increase the volume slowly because my forearms tend to ache if i do too much volume. ive never done wrist curls, i would imagine the tendons in my wrist would snap like guitar strings


Wrist curls, pronated, supinated, and neutral grip. Lots of people here seem to hate them, but I think they work. For the past month I've been doing them everyday, and I've noticed my forearms growing. One day I'll use barbell, the next I'll use cables, then dumbbells, and so on.

Also sometimes I'll do a bunch of extensions/flexion and then I'll hit a set of heavy shrugs right away, going for as many reps as I can until my grip gives out.


well,imo, if you are doing (without an intense use of straps):

any DL variation (pins,romanian DL,hang clean etc et)

your forearms are well stressed up....without any direct training