Biceps Workout

Biceps Workout


Biceps are grouped under upper body. These muscles are in upper arm with two heads as below:

  1. Long Head
  2. Short Head

Both heads join on the middle of the humerus, to form a single muscle mass belly.

Along with these two muscles, there is 3rd muscle called as brachialis.


Long Head is towards the outer side which is also called outer head/outer biceps.

Short Head is towards the inner side which is also called inner head/inner biceps.

Brachialis lies between biceps and triceps. It forms the outer part of biceps.

Whenever you are doing biceps exercise, make sure each muscles are targeting well. Most of the people are unaware about this. They only know they are targeting biceps, but when you ask, which muscle of biceps? Answer will be something else.

Below points illustrate how change in grip changes the target muscles:

  1. Narrow grip barbell curls: Works the outer biceps (long-head).
  2. Wide-grip barbell curls: Works the inner biceps (short head).
  3. Natural-grip dumbbell curls: Works the brachialis and brachioradialis (Forearms).

Here I have covered few exercises for each muscle groups of biceps.


Long Head/Outer Biceps

If you want biceps peak then long head must be targeted more.

Concentration Curls

Main Area Targeted: Long Head/Outer Biceps


  1. Sit on the edge of a bench. Lean forward, and grasp a dumbbell with your left arm. Rest your elbow on the inside of your thigh.
  2. Keep your elbow pressed against your thigh, and curl the dumbbell until your bicep is fully contracted.
  3. Straighten your arm, and repeat the movement for 12 to 15 reps. Switch to your right arm, and repeat the exercise.
  4. Concentration curls isolate your biceps, focus on the long head and will help you get a bicep peak.
  5. Exhale while moving upwards and inhale while returning to the start position.

Dumbbell Preacher Curls

Main Area Targeted:  Long Head/Outer Biceps

One-arm dumbbell preacher curls is to isolate the outer head. You can also do preacher curls by barbell or E-Zee bar by both the arms with narrow grip. E-Zee Bar will target brachialis muscle too.


  1. Hold dumbbell in one arm by resting it on preacher bench. Start with the weaker arm.
  2. Exhale and slowly lift the dumbbell towards inside. Range of motion is essential during this exercise to allow maximum muscle stimulation throughout the biceps.
  3. Focus on each repetition, completing it in its full range of motion and squeezing the muscle at the top of the movement to get the biceps to grow.
  4. Inhale while returning to the start position. Complete three sets of 12 to 15 repetitions on each arm.
  5. Additionally, keep your rest time minimal by only resting while you are working the other arm.

Incline Dumbbell Curl

Main Area Targeted:  Long Head/Outer Biceps

Secondary Area Targeted: Shoulders

If you do dumbbell curls on an incline of anywhere from 30 to 60 degrees, it’ll stretch your outer biceps and encourage a stronger contraction.


  1. You can begin by sitting on an incline bench and holding a dumbbell in each hand. Allow your arms to hang by your sides with palms facing away from your body.
  2. Keep your wrists straight and firm throughout the exercise. Exhale and bend your right arm, lifting the weight toward your shoulder.
  3. Hold the peak position for a two-second count, inhale and then return to starting position.
  4. Repeat the curl with the left arm. Continue alternating arms, performing two or three sets of eight to 12 reps for each arm.
Short Head/Inner Biceps

Strengthening the inner biceps muscle not only helps improve the appearance of the arm, but it also makes everyday activities like lifting a bag of groceries easier to perform.

The wider your grip is on the weight, the more emphasis is placed on the short head. To place extra stress on the short head, position your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width as you lift and lower the weight. For best results, do inner biceps exercises from a seated position. Sitting eliminates the bottom half of the exercise movement and places more stress on the inner biceps.

Wide Grip Barbell Curl

Main Area Targeted:  Short Head/Inner Biceps

Secondary Area Targeted: Shoulders

If you perform barbell curls with a shoulder-width or wider grip and a narrow elbow position, it’ll shift the pressure to the short head.


  1. Hold a barbell with both hands in wider underhanded grip and stand up straight with the barbell hanging in front of your thighs.
  2. Stick your elbows on your sides. From this starting position, bend your arms as much as possible and squeeze your biceps as hard as you can.
  3. Inhale on the way up and then exhale on the way down. Do three sets of 10 to 15 reps of this.
  4. Don’t let your elbows to come in front of your body while lifting heavy weights otherwise there will be less inner biceps involvement.

Dumbbell Curl

Main Area Targeted:  Short Head/Inner Biceps

Secondary Area Targeted: Shoulders

Don’t get confused with Incline dumbbell press. There I have mentioned to keep your wrists straight and firm throughout the exercise. But here you have to curl the wrist away from the body while lifting up.

In addition, when you supinate the hand, or turn the palm up from a neutral position in which your palms are facing each other during a curl, it’ll stress the short head.


  1. Perform dumbbell curls in which you begin the curl with a hammer grip, palms facing each other. Start with your weaker arm and curl the dumbbell upward while doing alternate lifting.
  2. Midway through the curl, slowly turn your palm up as you move into the last phase of the range of movement.
  3. Return to starting position, reversing the movement so you end the curl with a neutral grip.
  4. Exhale while moving upwards and inhale while returning to the start position.
Brachialis Muscles

The brachialis muscles help the biceps appear bigger, especially the lower portion of the biceps. It’s best to do your brachialis work at the end of your biceps workout and before your forearm workout.

Dumbbell Hammer Curls

Main Area Targeted:  Brachialis, Forearms

Secondary Area Targeted: Shoulders


  1. To target the outer biceps, perform hammer curls with dumbbells and use a neutral grip. For example, Begin by standing with feet shoulder-width apart and knees slightly bent.
  2. Hold the dumbbells by your sides with arms extended and palms facing your body. Exhale and slowly lift the dumbbells toward your shoulders, maintaining the neutral grip throughout the range of motion.
  3. Hold the peak position for a second, inhale, then return to starting position.
  4. Perform eight to 12 reps for two or three sets.

Hammer Curls with Cable

Main Area Targeted:  Brachialis, Brachioradialis (Forearms)


  1. Stand about 1 foot away from a low-pulley machine. Grab the rope and keep your elbows and upper arms close to your sides. Also keep your thumbs up during the entire exercise.
  2. Curl the rope until your biceps are fully contracted.
  3. Lower until your arms are fully extended. You may also use a V-bar to do this if a setup with a rope is not available. However, the rope is the better choice.
  4. Exhale while moving upwards and inhale while returning to the start position.



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