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One Arm Barbell Vs. Dumbbell Curl


Could someone explain why a one arm barbell curl feels "lighter" than a dumbbell curl of the same weight? I need a physics lesson. Thanks..


you can keep the bar balanced?nice

hm...of the same weight?well I could understand if the bb curl was lighter since you have to balance more...maybe you're just weird.


probably because you have to squeeze the barbell much harder to stabilize the barbell.

Pavel describes in his book "Power to the People" a concept he calls irradiation, in which squeezing with your hand spreads tension from the forearms to surrounding muscles. Theoretically, this means that because you're squeezing the barbell, your biceps may be more neurally active. I've noticed the same thing.

He recommends squeezing for pretty much everything to take advantage of this concept.


That's so true. It feels lighter for me also. I can curl an olympic bar (45lb) many many times...and when I get a 40lb DB..not half as much. Weird.



yea sum up like 1/2 of pavels lessons

squeeze your hands hard, tighten up your abs, and a pucker up your asshole.

congrats you just "uploaded new muscle software"


^ He ain't kiddin'. I've read that from Pavel, too.


I was thinking it had something to do with the weight distribution. I guess a puckered asshole make more sense.


I think a bar is also "whippier", i.e. not as "dead" as a dumbell.


torque & Inertia




What Pavel really wants people to do is to contract their glutes often during lifts, even those which do not directly utilize them. He maintains that this is a good way of developing strength and stability.


itd be the same reason you can bb press more total weight than you can db press. ..


It just hit me, who the heck does a "one arm barbell curl"? I have tried it for fun, but I would never consider it as an excercise for daily use. And I imagine it is harder than a dumbell curl of the same weight because the plane is so spread out on a barbell that you have to balance it.

Anyway, maybe this is just something that I've never heard of.


TC, Shugart, and Davies have written about them.

I was asking why it's easier with the barbell.

The Pavelian Pucker Theory seems to have some merit but I should be able to get the same benefit from applying the Pavelian Pucker to the dumbbell version.

Better aerodynamics doesn't explain it because I workout in a vacuum-sealed room while wearing an oxygen mask.

Comparing the curl to a bench press is a poor example. A barbell curl is less stable than it's dumbbell counterpart while a barbell bench press is more stable than a dumbbell press.


I believe it does have to do with weight distribution and center of gravity but I'm no Issac Newton.