T Nation

How to Get Bigger Biceps?

Guys,

have trained many many years and was able to get every body part to grow except biceps.
Super super slow reps did help somewhat, but now I’m noticing that alot of guys with big biceps perform 1/2 reps or 3/4 reps (i.e., not locking out at bottom) with very heavy weight.

I’m wondering if this is the way to go. I was always taught to fully lock out biceps, but maybe I was wrong the whole time???
Triceps are big, but biceps have more of a powerlifter look and even when dieted down in the past they just were not very good.
What’s the KEY for bigger biceps?

If everything else is growing but biceps are not either you are not working them hard enough to grow, or you have reached your genetic “ceiling” so to speak. Sometimes you need to stimulate the muscle in a different way to get it to grow.

I.E. more volume, more speed on reps, more weight. Just pick some regimine that you have not done for a while and apply it to biceps first while keeping whatever you do splits with them as maintenance.

For instance if you train back and bi, Focus on your bi work first. If you do high volume high reps, switch to lower volume, higher explosion movements with heavier weight.

Like doings sets of cheat curls with as much weight as you can handle for singles or doubles. (don’t hurt your back)Basically, you just need to do something for 6-8 weeks that your biceps arent used to so they will respond to training. Other than that, live with it I guess. Or synthol.

V

When you started training, how big were your arms and what kind of weight were you using on your different bicep exercises?

Now, how big are your arms and what kinds of weights are you using for your various bicep exercises?

As has been made clear to me, when it comes down to it, it’s as simple as getting as strong as you can in hypertrophy rep zones (8-12, 12-15, whatever) while pounding down copious amounts of food.

How strong are your biceps? What is your height/weight? What is your current arm size?

I like doing power partials, cheaters, static holds, 21s as well as full ROM work. There is nothing wrong with doing partial movements. Lets you work with a bit higher weight. I wouldnt eliminate full ROM work altogether though.

I have been doing a bentover curl variation lately that is pretty killer. Grab an EZ bar in the bentover position and curl it all the way up to the peak. Now hold the peak while you pull your elbows back to the row position. Then lower the elbows back down before lowering the bar to the start position. Full range ROM plus static hold all in one. Shifting the elbows back lets gravity put the stress back on the bicep at the peak similar to the feel of cable work.

I like doing power partials, cheaters, static holds, 21s as well as full ROM work. There is nothing wrong with doing partial movements. Lets you work with a bit higher weight. I wouldnt eliminate full ROM work altogether though.

I have been doing a bentover curl variation lately that is pretty killer. Grab an EZ bar in the bentover position and curl it all the way up to the peak. Now hold the peak while you pull your elbows back to the row position. Then lower the elbows back down before lowering the bar to the start position. Full range ROM plus static hold all in one. Shifting the elbows back lets gravity put the stress back on the bicep at the peak similar to the feel of cable work.

[quote]AngryVader wrote:
How strong are your biceps? What is your height/weight? What is your current arm size?[/quote]

THE most important question and post in this thread.

[quote]Professor X wrote:
AngryVader wrote:
How strong are your biceps? What is your height/weight? What is your current arm size?

THE most important question and post in this thread.[/quote]

225 lbs. 5’8" 17.5 inches no peak so to speak of, get worse when dieting, unless i get super skinny.
Biceps never were very strong when compared to a 405 bench, 600 lb squat, and very strong deadlift.
Maybe could do 105 lb. st. bb curls super strict for sets of 6-8 (just not very strong here.)
very strong triceps.

[quote]chilco wrote:
Professor X wrote:
AngryVader wrote:
How strong are your biceps? What is your height/weight? What is your current arm size?

THE most important question and post in this thread.

225 lbs. 5’8" 17.5 inches no peak so to speak of, get worse when dieting, unless i get super skinny.
Biceps never were very strong when compared to a 405 bench, 600 lb squat, and very strong deadlift.
Maybe could do 105 lb. st. bb curls super strict for sets of 6-8 (just not very strong here.)
very strong triceps.[/quote]

How old are you and how much of that 225lbs is muscle?

[quote]Professor X wrote:
chilco wrote:
Professor X wrote:
AngryVader wrote:
How strong are your biceps? What is your height/weight? What is your current arm size?

THE most important question and post in this thread.

225 lbs. 5’8" 17.5 inches no peak so to speak of, get worse when dieting, unless i get super skinny.
Biceps never were very strong when compared to a 405 bench, 600 lb squat, and very strong deadlift.
Maybe could do 105 lb. st. bb curls super strict for sets of 6-8 (just not very strong here.)
very strong triceps.

How old are you and how much of that 225lbs is muscle?

[/quote]
Currently about 15 lbs. overweight. I mean I’ve gone down to 180 lbs. and looked pretty good overall, and yes the biceps actually looked bigger, but still small compared to the rest. Triceps overshadow biceps.

[quote]chilco wrote:
Professor X wrote:
chilco wrote:
Professor X wrote:
AngryVader wrote:
How strong are your biceps? What is your height/weight? What is your current arm size?

THE most important question and post in this thread.

225 lbs. 5’8" 17.5 inches no peak so to speak of, get worse when dieting, unless i get super skinny.
Biceps never were very strong when compared to a 405 bench, 600 lb squat, and very strong deadlift.
Maybe could do 105 lb. st. bb curls super strict for sets of 6-8 (just not very strong here.)
very strong triceps.

How old are you and how much of that 225lbs is muscle?

Currently about 15 lbs. overweight. I mean I’ve gone down to 180 lbs. and looked pretty good overall, and yes the biceps actually looked bigger, but still small compared to the rest. Triceps overshadow biceps.

[/quote]

The point is, your 225lbs isn’t the same as someone who is leaner. I would expect someone weighing that much at even 18% body fat to have bigger arms than that. If your body fat is much higher, it means your lean body mass isn’t enough to warrant really large biceps. That would mean you need to gain more muscle all over and drop some of that body fat.

[quote]chilco wrote:
Maybe could do 105 lb. st. bb curls super strict for sets of 6-8 (just not very strong here.)
[/quote]

Well there you go. I think you answered your own question. Get your bicep strength up. 105 for BB curls is not very strong. Anyone with arms over 18’ is going to be curling significantly more than that.

[quote]Professor X wrote:
chilco wrote:
Professor X wrote:
chilco wrote:
Professor X wrote:
AngryVader wrote:
How strong are your biceps? What is your height/weight? What is your current arm size?

THE most important question and post in this thread.

225 lbs. 5’8" 17.5 inches no peak so to speak of, get worse when dieting, unless i get super skinny.
Biceps never were very strong when compared to a 405 bench, 600 lb squat, and very strong deadlift.
Maybe could do 105 lb. st. bb curls super strict for sets of 6-8 (just not very strong here.)
very strong triceps.

How old are you and how much of that 225lbs is muscle?

Currently about 15 lbs. overweight. I mean I’ve gone down to 180 lbs. and looked pretty good overall, and yes the biceps actually looked bigger, but still small compared to the rest. Triceps overshadow biceps.

The point is, your 225lbs isn’t the same as someone who is leaner. I would expect someone weighing that much at even 18% body fat to have bigger arms than that. If your body fat is much higher, it means your lean body mass isn’t enough to warrant really large biceps. That would mean you need to gain more muscle all over and drop some of that body fat.

[/quote]

Point well taken, but still even at a heavier body weight isn’t it possible to add some mass to the biceps??? I feel like a see saw when dieting and perform much better at this weight. Have NEVER been a super lean dude. Dieting is tortorous for me and I have a hard time holding the mass at a leaner weight. I’ve seen really fat guys who’ve got 21 inch guns that look good.

[quote]chilco wrote:
Professor X wrote:
chilco wrote:
Professor X wrote:
chilco wrote:
Professor X wrote:
AngryVader wrote:
How strong are your biceps? What is your height/weight? What is your current arm size?

THE most important question and post in this thread.

225 lbs. 5’8" 17.5 inches no peak so to speak of, get worse when dieting, unless i get super skinny.
Biceps never were very strong when compared to a 405 bench, 600 lb squat, and very strong deadlift.
Maybe could do 105 lb. st. bb curls super strict for sets of 6-8 (just not very strong here.)
very strong triceps.

How old are you and how much of that 225lbs is muscle?

Currently about 15 lbs. overweight. I mean I’ve gone down to 180 lbs. and looked pretty good overall, and yes the biceps actually looked bigger, but still small compared to the rest. Triceps overshadow biceps.

The point is, your 225lbs isn’t the same as someone who is leaner. I would expect someone weighing that much at even 18% body fat to have bigger arms than that. If your body fat is much higher, it means your lean body mass isn’t enough to warrant really large biceps. That would mean you need to gain more muscle all over and drop some of that body fat.

Point well taken, but still even at a heavier body weight isn’t it possible to add some mass to the biceps??? I feel like a see saw when dieting and perform much better at this weight. Have NEVER been a super lean dude. Dieting is tortorous for me and I have a hard time holding the mass at a leaner weight. I’ve seen really fat guys who’ve got 21 inch guns that look good.
[/quote]

Well, they aren’t you. You will have to gain more lean body mass to make that change assuming your lifts for biceps are increasing as well. Gaining more when you are already carrying too much body fat sounds like a great idea, huh?

Post pictures if you want someone to actually give advice based on what you actually look like.

[quote]Professor X wrote:
chilco wrote:
Professor X wrote:
chilco wrote:
Professor X wrote:
chilco wrote:
Professor X wrote:
AngryVader wrote:
How strong are your biceps? What is your height/weight? What is your current arm size?

THE most important question and post in this thread.

225 lbs. 5’8" 17.5 inches no peak so to speak of, get worse when dieting, unless i get super skinny.
Biceps never were very strong when compared to a 405 bench, 600 lb squat, and very strong deadlift.
Maybe could do 105 lb. st. bb curls super strict for sets of 6-8 (just not very strong here.)
very strong triceps.

How old are you and how much of that 225lbs is muscle?

Currently about 15 lbs. overweight. I mean I’ve gone down to 180 lbs. and looked pretty good overall, and yes the biceps actually looked bigger, but still small compared to the rest. Triceps overshadow biceps.

The point is, your 225lbs isn’t the same as someone who is leaner. I would expect someone weighing that much at even 18% body fat to have bigger arms than that. If your body fat is much higher, it means your lean body mass isn’t enough to warrant really large biceps. That would mean you need to gain more muscle all over and drop some of that body fat.

Point well taken, but still even at a heavier body weight isn’t it possible to add some mass to the biceps??? I feel like a see saw when dieting and perform much better at this weight. Have NEVER been a super lean dude. Dieting is tortorous for me and I have a hard time holding the mass at a leaner weight. I’ve seen really fat guys who’ve got 21 inch guns that look good.

Well, they aren’t you. You will have to gain more lean body mass to make that change assuming your lifts for biceps are increasing as well. Gaining more when you are already carrying too much body fat sounds like a great idea, huh?

Post pictures if you want someone to actually give advice based on what you actually look like.[/quote]

Nah. I’m terrified to show my body even when I’m showing abs. It’s a curse. I actually bailed on a bb show cause I thought I wasn’t lean enough, but when i went to the show as a spectator I think I would’ve won my class and at this point in life I just like to kick around some ideas for bigger bi’s. The hardcore stuff is for the younger guys. Still??? There’s a little bit of me that wants to go back at it full tilt.
I take what I can get and let the hostility run off my back.

If your biceps are lagging so severely behind your other muscle groups, then you should probably both up the frequency and volume of your biceps training (at least one of the two). Basically, train your biceps “harder”, more frequently, and with variety.

Just keep gaining while continuing to progress on your big arm movements.

Cut when you think its appropriate.

How did this thread go this long without Barney Fife telling this guy to Squat more? Barney is slacking.

Have you put the same amount of time and energy into your biceps that you have into your bench squat and dead?

Well, this is refreshing. I was waiting for someone to tell him to stop doing curls.