Building stronger triceps is a great way to improve the way your upper body looks, especially if you’re a guy who’s hoping to build more lean muscle mass tissue. That said, not everyone is approaching their tricep workout correctly. By using a few smart tips and techniques, you can help yourself see better results. Let’s go over what you should know.
Include Exercises For Different Positions of Flexion
The very first quick tip to improve your tricep workout is to include exercises that have you extending your arms from different positions of flexion (POF). Meaning – a movement where your arms contract down at your sides, a movement where your arms contract out in front of you, and/or a movement where your arms contract overhead. By having different leverages and angles of resistance in there, you’ll challenge the muscle tissues in a much more significant and complete way…leaving all heads of the tricep muscle fully fatigued. If you’re only doing one form of extension or pushdown, you may only hit one or two heads of the triceps, rather than all three. Try including at least 2 of the 3 different POF within your workout. For example – Lying Extension/Skull Crusher (arm out in front), overhead extensions (arms overhead) along with a tricep pushdown (arms by your side). You’ll feel like you’ve achieved a better workout if you do this.
Try Pre-Fatigue (aka Pre-Exhaust)
Moving along, it’s also a good idea to pre-fatigue the muscles on a regular basis to really push the fatigue barrier and ensure that you are building up their work capacity. Try doing a tricep isolation exercise such as a tricep overhead extension or pushdown and then move into a compound exercise where the triceps will be a helper muscle such as close grip bench press or pushup. By doing so, you’ll help to really fatigue them out in that compound lift, while also challenging the main muscle group (chest) working in that exercise more. It’s a win-win for your upper body development. Just note that you may lift slightly less weight overall on that second exercise.
Make The Mind-Muscle Connection
Finally, the last thing that you should be considering is to really focus in on the mind-muscle connection. Don’t just ‘go through the movement pattern’. If you do that, you are likely going to end up creating less stress and tension on the tricep muscle than you otherwise could be. Really think about the muscles contracting and relaxing as you go about the movement. This will help to ensure that you are getting a full force contraction, lifting as much weight as you possibly can and therefore seeing the improvements that you want to be making. Most people fail to really think about their muscles contracting with each and every rep they do and as such, get mediocre workouts at best. The more you can dial in and focus on those contractions, the faster your progress will be. So keep these quick points in mind and you can be seeing excellent tricep progress in no time.