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Add More Size To Your Triceps With These Sleeve-Stretching Moves

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The three-headed triceps brachii muscle plays a key role in sports and the movements of everyday life, working with the lats to bring the arm toward the body and playing a huge role in the extension of the elbow joint.

Try launching a basketball, signing your name, or taking a swim stroke without the triceps. It can’t be done. Nor can you swing a bat, racquet, or golf club without your tris playing a prominent role. So it’s worth spending some time on the triceps.

In this workout, we have five pairs of triceps supersets. As is normally the case with supersets, don’t rest between the paired exercises (marked A and B in the same number). You may rest 60 seconds between superset pairs.

Triceps Stretch and Triceps Pressdowns:

1A: Triceps Stretch:

Why: This not only stretches your triceps but also provides a good barometer of your shoulder mobility.

How to:

  • Stand with one hand behind your neck and your elbow pointing up.
  • Use your other hand—or, more likely, your other hand gently pulling a rope or towel held in your other hand—to pull down your elbow.
  • You’ll likely find this easier on one side than the other.
  • Hold for 10 seconds on each side.

 

Triceps Stretch and Triceps Pressdowns

1B: Triceps Pressdown:

Why: When done properly, this move effectively isolates the triceps without placing undue stress on your elbow joints.

How to:

  • The key when pushing the cable (or bar) down into the fully extended position is to maintain good posture with your shoulders pulled back and down.
  • Return the cable/bar no higher than chest level with each rep, and make sure you don’t move your upper arms or use your hips to help with the weight.
  • 2 sets of 10 reps.

 

Suspension Trainer Triceps Extension and Dips:

2A: Suspension Trainer Triceps Extension:

Why: The bodyweight resistance provided by the TRX is an effective, controlled movement that challenges the triceps.

How to:

  • Lean forward in a split stance with arms straight out at shoulder-level in front of you, holding the TRX handles so the TRX hangs diagonally.
  • Keeping your body straight, bend your elbows and lower your body until the hands are next to your head.
  • Extend your elbows and return to starting position.
  • After the first set, switch up your split stance.
  • 2 sets of 10 reps.

 

Suspension Trainer Triceps Extension and Dips

2B: Dips:

Why: Perhaps the simplest triceps exercise, the dip is also one of the most effective and can be done on a bench, chair, or bar—even the floor.

How to:

  • Position yourself above and between the bars (or with your back to a bench or chair) and grab the handles with an overhand grip.
  • Cross your ankles behind you to make it slightly easier and put more weight on your chest; straighten your legs and point your toes for more triceps isolation.
  • Lower yourself slowly, and push back up in a controlled manner.
  • 2 sets of 10 reps.

 

Chaturanga and Dumbbell Skullcrusher:

3A: Chaturanga:

Why:  There’s a reason your tiny yoga instructor has such amazing tris. This signature yoga move challenges you to support your entire body with your triceps.

How to:

  • From a standard plank position, lower your elbows to shoulder height, pinning them against your side.
  • Your chest, shoulders, upper arms, and elbows should be in alignment.
  • Push back to plank.
  • 2 sets of 10 reps.

 

Chaturanga and Dumbbell Skullcrusher

3B: Dumbbell Skullcrusher:

Why: The classic skullcrusher not only directly works the triceps but also builds coordination between the upper back and triceps.

How to:

  • Lie face-up on a bench and lower the dumbbells until your elbows are bent 90°.
  • Then pull back to starting position.
  • 2 sets of 10 reps.

 

Plank-to-pushup and Cable Cross Pulldown:

4A: Plank-to-pushup:

Why: The triceps carry much of the burden for this challenging compound movement.

How to:

  • Begin in a forearm plank position.
  • Push from your triceps, placing your right hand on the ground and then your left hand, gradually rising to pushup position.
  • Return to the forearm plank by placing your right forearm down and then your left.
  • 2 sets of 10 reps.

 

Plank-to-pushup and Cable Cross Pulldown

4B: Cable Cross Pulldown:

Why: In addition to working the triceps, you’ll get some benefits to the back and shoulders, too. And because it’s a pulling movement, you can do this between two pushing movements without taking a break.

How to:

  • Kneel in front of a cable machine holding cable handles overhead diagonally across the body.
  • Pull your elbows down to your sides, and then the handles diagonally down and across your body as you straighten your elbows and rotate your palms to face forward.
  • 2 sets of 10 reps.

 

Diamond Pushup and Suspension Trainer Triceps Flye:

5A: Diamond Pushup:

Why: By performing pushups from this position, you take a traditional all-around upper-body move and make it into a triceps-intensive exercise.

How to:

  • Assume a pushup position with index fingers and thumbs touching to form a diamond shape.
  • Push up using the triceps.
  • Make sure to go to full extension.
  • 2 sets of 10 reps.

 

Diamond Pushup and Suspension Trainer Triceps Flye

5B: Suspension Trainer Triceps Flye:

Why: Like a chest flye, a suspension trainer flye works the triceps. The difference is that your body weight is providing the resistance.

How to:

  • Stand with feet together so you’re facing the suspension trainer anchors.
  • Grab the handles and lean forward so your arms are at 90° angles.
  • Extend your arms from the elbows, as in a standard chest fly, bringing your body almost to an upright position.
  • 2 sets of 10 reps.
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