Monday, May 30, 2016

Massive Arms For You, Part Three - Joe Weider (1956)

Center: Tommy Suggs, Mr. Greater Pittsburgh 1966

Barbell Exercises for the Forearms

1) Standing Wrist Curl:
 - for maximum flushing action.

Stand erect and hold a barbell in the hands as you would in the regular curl. Now, keeping the elbows stiff, you curl the wrists up, then lower the wrists and curl them down toward your thighs. Curl them up to the front again and continue the back and forth wrist curling motion until your forearms are fully flushed up.

You can use a wide, narrow, and regular shoulder width hand spacing for this exercise, and each hand placement affects the forearms in a slightly different manner. It is also valuable to perform the exercise with the palms of the hands facing the body as well as facing away from it. At first, perform the exercise rather slowly. However, as you progress you can cheat by speeding up the tempo of the wrist curls which will permit the use of heavier weights.

2) Seated Wrist Curl:
 - another flushing type forearm exercise.

In this exercise, which is very similar in action to the previous, you start the movement by sitting on a bench an resting your forearms on your thighs so that only the hands and wrists extend beyond the knees. Keep the palms of the hands facing up, and hold a barbell in your hands, using a shoulder width grip.

Now, curl your wrists up, then lower the hands as much as possible, at no time raising the elbows off your thighs, and then curl the weight back up again. Keep all the curling action in the wrist. Continue curling the wrist up and down until your forearms are fully flushed up.

Since your forearms are to rest along the thighs at all times while performing this exercise, with only your wrists and hands extending beyond he knees, to alter your hand width you must also alter the position of the thighs. For a narrow grip, draw the knees close together, and for a wide grip, point them out. You can also use a palms down hand position besides the palms up.

To cheat in this exercise you perform the movement rather quickly which allows you to use a heavier weight. 

3) Lean Over Goose Neck Curl
 - to thicken the inner belly of the forearm.   

To perform this exercise, bend forward and grasp a barbell at the feet in much the same manner as you would start the regular barbell rowing exercise. The palms of the hands are facing the body and you use a regular shoulder width grip. Raise the barbell a few inches off the floor, keeping the elbows stiff and straightening up the body to lift the weight clear off of the floor. Now, maintaining this bent over position curl the weight up toward the shoulders by bending the elbows, until the lower arms are approximately parallel to the floor. Bend the wrists forward while doing so, holding the weight at the shoulders for a moment and then lower to the starting position, straightening the wrists while doing so. 

Besides the shoulder width hand spacing you can also use a wide grip or a narrow one.

To cheat in this exercise swing the weight slightly at the starting position and this will permit the employment of heavier weights.

4) Reverse Curl:
 - for strengthening the ligaments at the elbow joint.

Stand erect and hold a barbell in the hands, at the thighs, palms of the hands facing the body. Use a regular shoulder width hand spacing. Now, trying to hold the upper arms against the sides curl the barbell to the shoulders, keeping the WRISTS STRAIGHT, and not bent forward as was true of the previous exercise. Hold the weight at the shoulders for a moment and then lower again to the thighs. You can also use a wide grip and a narrow one in the exercise.

To cheat, you swing the bar and bend back just as you do in the regular cheating barbell curl. Whether you cheat or not, lower the rather slowly, for you obtain almost as much developmental benefit from lowering the weight as from curling it.

5) Dead Lift:
 - for power in the fingers and grip.

While this exercise does not build much added forearm size, since there is little muscle movement, it is valuable, never-the-less, for the tremendous power it builds.

To perform the exercise, load up a barbell to a moderately heavy poundage, about 200 lbs. should serve as a test. Bend forward and grasp the barbel in the hands, using a shoulder width spacing, palms of the hands facing the body. Stand erect, lifting the barbell up with you while doing so. This is not the exercise, it actually starts now. Maintain an upright body position and then HOLD the weight in your hands until your grip practically gives out and you would drop the weight if you didn't lower it to the floor. The proper weight to use is one which completely exhausts your gripping power in about two minutes. If you can hold the weight longer than that it is too light. If you can't hold it that long, then the weight is too heavy.

While it is impractical to use any hand spacing other than a regular shoulder width grip you can perform the exercise with the palms of the hands facing AWAY from the body and also with a reversed grip, in which the palm of one hand is facing the front, while the palm of the other hand is facing towards the body. All three types of grips should be practiced.

IMPORTANT! You must not rest the barbell on the thighs when performing this exercise. Keep bent forward at the hips just enough to permit the barbell to hand clear of the thighs.

To cheat in this exercise, raise a barbell off the ground and rest it on two boxes, each about 20 inches high. Load the barbell heavily while resting on the two boxes (the bar, not you) and stand erect. You will only have to lift the weight a few inches to assume an erect stance. Because you don't have to lift the weight all the way up from the floor you will be able to handle greater poundages, for if your practice this gripping exercise regularly, in time the strength of your grip will be so great that you will be able to hold more in your hands than your leg, hip and back muscles can raise up from the floor. Then, cheating in the above manner will be necessary if you are to progress in your grip training.

Next: Part Four, Dumbbell Exercises for the Biceps.  

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