T Nation

Question On My Arm Training


hey fellas, i am curious to see which approach would be best for training arms... doing supersets, like doing exercise A1, A2, A3, A4 then repeat with no rest at all or... do exercise A with rests between sets doing the 4 sets, on to exercise B with rests between, etc. If that made no sense, here is what I am doing:

Chest/Biceps Day
A1 Standing Barbell curl NO REST ON TO A2
A2 Seated Alternating DB Curl NO REST ONTO A3
A3 Hammer Curl NO REST ON TO A4
A4 Lying Cable Bar Curl NO REST, BACK TO A1
4x8-10 doing max amount of weight while staying in that rep range. numbers obviously drop every set. My Back/Triceps go the same way.

Or is it better to do this:

A Standing Barbell Curl 45 Sec Rest 4x8-10
B Seated Alternating DB Curl 45 Sec Rest 4x8-10

I know by doing my method, my arms are fucking dead, sore for several days, and I have a hell of a pump. The reason I am probably over complicating this is because, as I said before, when I do my method, the weight drops quite a bit every set. I am wondering if my muscles arent getting the same volume as they would if I did the lift, rested, and repeated. I hope I didn't utterly confuse everyone with this. Just curious to see what you all think.


If you want to have your arms grow, improve your weight on bi/tri exercises while gaining weight. I've never used supersets, but I don't think that method would be very effective.


I see one exercise worth a crap.


What about

Close Grip Bench Press
Reverse Grip Bench Press



Looks like op was talking about biceps.


Arms Afire what do you feel is the best arm exercies out there? I recently gave up on having a straight arm day. only doing upper and lower body splits now. I sure would like to get some more size on my arms though just not sure dedicating a whole day to arms is the way to go.


yeah sorry i didnt include what my tricep/back day looks like, i was just giving an example of how i do the sets. triceps i do the same sort of thing. the exercises i do are glose grip bench, seated french press, dips, then decline 1 arm db extension.

only reason i have put this much thought into this is because my arms have lagged quite a bit compared to the rest of my body as it has grown and i am almost desperate to put an inch or so on my arms. i know that triceps make up 2/3 of arm size so i work them pretty brutally.


Best arm exercises are for the forearms. Heavy wrist curls and heavy reverse curls. You can't curl the weight until you can wrist curl it.

Best bicep exercise is the preacher curl with a straight bar, but the pad face must be rounded so that the forearms do not rest on it. The pad should be adjusted so that the top is at the lower pec line, which will provide tension throughout the range of motion. Lean away when extended, lean in at the top of the movement. Go heavy, 4x6-8, last set lighter but reps to pain failure.

For triceps it is the rope extension using a flat bench for the elbows. Try to keep head below the bench for greater tricep stretch. Heavy as you can, 4x6-8, last set lighter but reps to pain failure.

Do forearms last, but do them well.

Eat more food.


i would say that the best arm exercises are big compound movements for triceps (cgbp, rgbp, dips) and then some heavy compound type movements for bis such as bb curls. your tris will be under a lot more tensions from exercises such as cgbp because you can cgbp a lot more than you can do pushdowns with or another pushdown type of exercise. also, for bis getting really strong on your rowing movements would also help to build them for the same reason that you can row a lot more than you can curl.


Dropshot, I would have to disagree with you. Doing an upper/lower split already should require compounds for the chest/back/front delt. Those areas should already be wasted by the time you get to arms. I agree with dips as a valid tricep exercise as long as the hands and feet are behind and head is up. Just not the best for size.

As far as bb curls, it is a fine exercise as long as you lean away at the bottom and lean in at the top, also called the perfect curl. Unfortunately, most people lean in at the bottom and away at the top, making this a front delt exercise, and the heavier you go the worse it gets.

As far as rowing, I feel that in my back, not my arms. I guess if I felt it in my arms, I wouldn't be doing it right.

If the question was one of strength, you have listed some of the exercises I would use. Compounds build power and strength. The question was about size. While compounds will build some size, they will not build real size in arms.


I have never gotten great long term results from supersets. Every once in a while, but like you said in your OP, the weight used becomes so insignificant it's a waste. IMO preacher curls are a waste of time. heavy barbell curls, hammer curls for biceps, and cgbp and pushdowns for tri's for the top two.


thanks everyone for the feedback. im going to switch it around so im resting between sets to keep volume higher.


I don't understand supersets. All they do is force you to use lighter weights on subsequent sets. Unless there an antagonist superset (the arms are the best body part to use those imo).


Very much agree