Fitness Friday: Awesome Arms!

Happy Friday, everyone! Today’s post gives you another move in the Kick-butt Compound Exercise Series, and this one targets the biceps and shoulders. As with previous exercises in the series, this one combines a couple of individual exercises in order to target multiple muscle groups. Today’s exercise is the Bicep Curl to Arnold Press.

To do the exercise, you’ll need a pair of dumbbells that’s heavy enough to challenge you through both phases of the exercise, but not so heavy that you break form in order to smoothly execute the entire move. This will depend on your own individual areas of strength and weakness, but generally, most people can press a little more weight overhead than they can curl. In that case,┬áthe appropriate weight for this exercise may be the weight that you use to perform 8 to 12 dumbbell curls with perfect form. Because this is a complex movement, however, it’s a good idea to do the first set with a lower weight, just to be sure you can move through the transitional phase smoothly. Here’s how the exercise goes:

Biceps Curl Phase: Start with your feet firmly planted at hip-width and engage your core. You should be holding the dumbbells in an underhand grip with the backs of your hands against the front of your upper thighs. Curl the dumbbells up near your shoulders in a slow, controlled motion. That’s the end of the first phase.

Transition Phase: From the top of your biceps curl, begin the transition by flaring your elbows out away from your body. (This is the same motion you make when performing lateral shoulder raises with bent elbows.) As your elbows approach 45 degrees out from your body, begin rotating your wrists and forearms inward. That’s the end of the second phase.

Press Phase: To complete the press, continue rotating your wrists and forearms inward until you’re holding the dumbbells in an overhand grip, palms facing away from you. Continue your momentum to┬ápress the dumbbells up overhead, completing the last phase.

Here’s a short video clip of me doing a few reps:

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