Sergio Olivia Jr. - Forearms

Based on routines I’ve seen, he claims to do no direct forearm work. Closest he gets are a few sets of Hammer Curls. Anyone know differently?

My first thought is that forearms and calves are more genetic than obtained through training.

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I partially agree: Calf size, more than any other bodypart, is determined by heredity. And forearms are a very close 2nd!
My calves are far-and-away my best bodypart, but they DO suffer without direct work. I dropped direct work for 3 months and lost 3/4".

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I have lifted weights for many decades.
I can only recall one person getting good calves that didn’t naturally have them.
I can’t recall anyone with good forearms that hadn’t had them for as long as I had seen.

I am not saying don’t train forearms, but I am saying that I have see some really good forearms on people who never trained them, that I ever saw.

I trained my forearms heavy, which might not be the optimal way. Wrist curls off the end of a bench with 225lbs, 3 sets of 10 reps. I don’t believe I made much improvement. They weren’t pitiful, but definitely not impressive.

Well, his dad had perhaps the best arm genetics in all of bodybuilding. I am not surprised arms / forearms come easy to him.

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Yeah, that point is pretty unavoidable! Though he’s surpassed dad in the forearm department, IMO. I should know better by this time that G&G are mostly to credit for his arm development, and not some secret program or exercise(s)!!

The guys in the mags always spit out higher reps for forearms, because they were “right under the skin” — whatever TF that meant! High reps did nothing for me.

Some fatigue testing told me low reps should better. And when I stopped to think about it, my anecdotal experiences in furniture moving and plumbing backed the testing results up. Lowered my work to 2 sets of 5-7 reps and voila, they grew. Not as strong as you since I only worked as high as 225 for lower reps. Forerams are good, but not eye popping — they’d probably look more impressive if my torso weren’t shaped like a beer keg these days!!!

I do zero direct forearm work.

I believe heavy heavy ass weight build them well in conjunction with genetics.


Yeah, it looks like you have really long forearm muscles. Very Nice.

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Yates never trained forearms and they looked like hams.

They have an adverse juice/squeeze ratio.

Pun intended.

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Are you saying they don’t respond to gear as well as other muscles?

Never trained forearms directly! Dorian did 5-6 grip-intensive exercises every back workout — which would take care of the flexors. He did incline curls (brachiradialis & brachialis). And extensors do get involved in heavy lateral raises. I guess if you do enough HIT-hard work, they will get stimulated, even if they are not the direct focus of the exercise(s)…genes permitting.

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:joy: No.

Theres a saying- The juice ain’t worth the squeeze- when something is more difficult than beneficial.


Actually, that’s not quite what it means. It asks the question of whether you’re willing to do the work to achieve a goal (i.e. larger forearms). The question of whether something is ‘beneficial’, 1) will come BEFORE one asks the previous question and 2) will certainly have very subjective responses! If ‘Yes’, you believe there is benefit, you may then apply your juice metaphor!


Heres a thing to demonstrate how things can have other meanings-

Sally walks into homeroom 5 minutes late. Teacher says “Sally, you’re 5 minutes late! I’m going to have to mark you tardy if you don’t have a good reason for this!”.

Sally says “I was dilly dallying on the way to school and blowing bubbles.”.

Teacher says “Well, next time be more prompt. You almost missed our new boy here in home room. Billy, stand up and introduce yourself.”

Then Billy stands up and says “Hi Everybody! I’m Billy Smith, but all of my friends call me Bubbles.”…



Great joke, but you’re still off on the definition. ‘Beneficial’ is built-in…it’s already there. Now you must decide if you’re willing to do the hard/extra work.

No, you are! :rofl:

The effort outweighs the benefit.


Those 400lb reverse grip rows seem like a pretty good forearm builder.

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Just like @Bauber zero forearm work for me