The Big Arm Routine

Shock your arms with this routine! Work this routine into your workout for 10 weeks. Once per week for the first 8 weeks, then twice per week for last 2 weeks.

Workout Summary

Build Muscle
Single Muscle Group
Intermediate
1
Barbell, Cables, Dumbbells, EZ Bar
Male & Female

Workout Description

Want bigger arms? Arms stuck in a plateau? Shock your arms with this routine! Work this routine into your workout for 10 weeks. Once per week for the first 8 weeks, then twice per week for last 2 weeks.

Workout Notes:

Thoroughly warm up and stretch both biceps and triceps before the workout. Stretch both muscles at the end of the routine.

  • Rest between sets: 90 seconds.
  • Rep timing: slow and precise.
  • Frequency: once per week for weeks 1-8, weeks 8-10 twice per week.

Workout Schedule:

Big Arm Routine
Biceps
Exercise Sets Reps
Barbell Curl 5 8
Barbell Curl 1 20
Incline Dumbbell Curl (bench 30-40 degrees) 5 8
Incline Dumbbell Curl (bench 30-40 degrees) 1 20
Triceps
Exercise Sets Reps
Close Grip Bench Press 5 8
Close Grip Bench Press 1 20
EZ Bar, Lying Tricep Extension 5 8
EZ Bar, Lying Tricep Extension 1 20
Tricep Pushdown, (hands 8-10" apart) 5 8
Tricep Pushdown, (hands 8-10" apart) 1 20

 

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About The Author
Doug is an ex-competitive bodybuilder with over 20 years fitness experience, specifically diet & nutrition, weight management and training techniques.

475 Comments+ Post Comment

Steven's picture
Posted Tue, 07/12/2011 - 15:09
Steven
It could be. Do you focus on progression during each set, and what type of results are you getting?
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Posted Mon, 06/20/2011 - 14:35
Gary
Hi Steve, I like your routine, but I've had shoulder problems over the years and the Incline Dumbbell Curl seems to agrivate it. Is there another bicep exercise that can be substituted for it? Thanks.
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Posted Wed, 06/22/2011 - 15:04
george
steve my question is the weights used. for the 5 sets should you use the same weight or increase or decrease after each rep? thanks
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Posted Sun, 06/26/2011 - 13:00
Alberto
2 questions. Do I have to lift heavy for big shoulders or do I lift light to burn them?, and Im trying to get my biceps wider. What evrcises do u recomened?, lastly how can I widen my tricep size..I am a very strong guy, and strngth is there but size isn't. What do I do?
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Posted Mon, 07/11/2011 - 04:44
paul
Hi I'm just starting a 3 day split routine which would have me train triceps and biceps on different days. Would it be ok do you think, to split the appropriate exercises up from your routine and substitute them into my 3 day split for the relavent muscle? Or should I drop the routine and just do this as presented? Thanks Paul
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Posted Tue, 07/12/2011 - 15:56
pat
Yes, do focus on progession each set and sometimes will add a drop down set at the end of each group for extra burn (depends on energy of course). I feel I have gain good size and strength, but i've read so much about less is more. Way too many opinions out there, gotta wonder which is right, wrong, etc. My current schedule is: Monday - shoulders Tuesday - back Wednesday - chest Thursday - abs Friday - Biceps & Triceps (or I might do Tri's alone on Saturdays) Usually will split up legs during the week, for example may do quads on Monday a.m. - Hamstrings on Wednesday a.m. - Calves on Friday a.m. Normally all main workouts are 45 min to 1 hr 15min or so. Maybe I read too much. Thoughts...overtraining? no?
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Posted Fri, 07/15/2011 - 20:20
Dan
Hi Steve I remember you said in one of your messages that your arms were around 21 inches but that your triceps were much bigger than your biceps. I was wandering what kind of weight (ie for skullcrushers) do you lift to be able to get to that level and roughly how long did it take you to get to that size??? The reason I'm asking is because it will give me a goal to work towards - I probably wont ever get to 21 inches but if I have a rough idea of what kind of weights I need to be lifting, it would really help to motivate me. Many thanks.
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Posted Mon, 07/18/2011 - 18:14
matt
I have been over weight for some time but I have lost 20 pounds over the last year from doing regular running and exercise at home. I am now about regular size 15 years old 6 foot and 155 pounds. I had stopped working out for two to three weeks and started back up at my local gym with basic lifts. I am now trying to get big without supplements. I have done all the lifts and weight exercises I know every day. Now I am trying to do certain muscle groups every day on different days. I want to do this because I am told that I have to let my muscles rest so that I can actually build muscle. Through the week what should I do and what should I start out doing? p.s. Even though I do the same workout every day I have seen changes in the size of my arms, legs, and body and I have also went up in weight.
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Posted Tue, 07/26/2011 - 13:27
bengalmagic
hi im 13 and i have been working out for sports .. and i dont see any results how come?
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Posted Tue, 07/26/2011 - 13:29
bengalmagic
and will this routine help me lift more
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Posted Wed, 07/27/2011 - 13:06
tj
hi im 13 and ive been trying to workout but i dont have a gym membership.. but how come i dont see results
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Posted Wed, 08/03/2011 - 09:10
G. Arita
Hey Steve, I´m kind of confuse with the instructions about how many times do we have to practise those exercises. Up here you said "Work this routine into your workout for 10 weeks." Does it mean to work out this muscle group only once a week with this program ?? Or work out this plan once a week and work out more ours plans during the others days ?? thanks
Steven's picture
Posted Wed, 08/03/2011 - 13:50
Steven
You work arms once per week for weeks 1-8, weeks 8-10 twice per week. You will also add your normal muscle building days around this.
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Posted Wed, 08/03/2011 - 09:29
dharvin
hey steve...theres a prob ive been dieting the right way....and i keep doing tis exerxise for a few weeks......but my chest muscles are stil JIGLLY~~~~~~plz help
Steven's picture
Posted Wed, 08/03/2011 - 13:51
Steven
You want to focus on two things to maximize results: 1) Pushing yourself in the gym. Using good form, always push yourself on every set. When you can perform the recommended number of reps for a set, add weight. 2) Eating to maximize muscle retention while cutting fat. Here are two articles that can help: http://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/your-go-to-guide-for-cutting-fat-while-keeping-muscle.html https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/how-to-create-a-bodybuilding-diet.html
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Posted Mon, 08/08/2011 - 16:27
Bob Billings
Where are the compund lifts??? Just saying. If u focus on increasing your deadlift, squat, and bench press your arms will grow! And then add some dips and chin-ups and you'll add slabs of muscle not only to ur arms, but to ur overall physique. But i do agree with doing close-grip bench press because it allows you to move heavy weights with ur triceps and is a good compound lift.
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Posted Fri, 08/12/2011 - 10:56
Dan
hi there, good exersizes but slightly worried about the reps and sets as the reps there are more for stregnth and not muscle building, to build muscle dont you need to be hitting 9-11 reps for 2-3 sets??
Steven's picture
Posted Fri, 08/12/2011 - 13:58
Steven
Hi Dan, Strength and muscle can be built is most standard rep ranges. For most exercises the 5 to 12 range works well. Progression will build muscle, regardless of the specific rep range used. Focus on that and you will make great progress.
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Posted Wed, 09/07/2011 - 03:34
john green
hey steve quick question do i add weight to each set ? for example just start with something easier then build up to set five, but make sure to be able to do one set of twenty with what i did set five with ? do you have an example ? thanks
Steven's picture
Posted Thu, 09/22/2011 - 13:19
Steven
Hi John, You want to be pushing yourself one very set, so you may actually need to drop the weight from set to set. For each set it should be hard/a callenge to reach the rep total.
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Posted Wed, 09/07/2011 - 22:27
tushar
i want video..coz i cant understand ur sets names..so plz help me..how can i get dat...
Steven's picture
Posted Wed, 09/28/2011 - 14:23
Steven
Hi Tushar, Each exercise is linked to a video.
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Posted Sun, 09/11/2011 - 18:36
Rick
When do you recommend that we add more weight to these exercises? Is it every week?
Steven's picture
Posted Thu, 09/29/2011 - 16:04
Steven
Using good form, always push yourself on every set. When you can perform the recommended number of reps for a set, add weight.
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Posted Thu, 09/15/2011 - 16:20
Kieran Mcloughlin
Ive done bodybuilding for a year now and i have no problems so far with chest,back, shoulders and legs but arms have always been a weak point and i wanting to ask about any exercises which could help me start building bigger arms?
Steven's picture
Posted Fri, 09/30/2011 - 14:19
Steven
Have you tried this workout?
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Posted Fri, 09/16/2011 - 16:24
Harminder
I m working out for about a year or so, but havent gain a single inch yet in my arms, what would b gud for me both biceps and triceps on same day, or a single exercise
Steven's picture
Posted Fri, 09/30/2011 - 14:19
Steven
Have you tried this workout? You want to focus on two things to maximize results: 1) Pushing yourself in the gym. Using good form, always push yourself on every set. When you can perform the recommended number of reps for a set, add weight. 2) Eat to maximize muscle gains. Here are some articles that can help: https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/how-to-create-a-bodybuilding-diet.html http://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/building-muscle-eating-like-a-bodybuilder.html
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Posted Thu, 09/29/2011 - 19:47
Eric
Hey, thanks for this website in general! i have been working out now consistently for 6 weeks now and have noticed improvements in my body which has driven me to keep going. Anyway, concerning this page I have one question since I am not understanding the workout lay out... Do 1 set of bicep curls for 8 reps then do another 1 set of 20 then continue down the list or should i do all 5 sets then end with the explosive 20 rep set and continue on down the list? Hope this makes sense the way I worded it. Thanks
Steven's picture
Posted Fri, 09/30/2011 - 14:20
Steven
Do all 5 sets and then finish with the 20 rep burn.
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Posted Sun, 10/02/2011 - 04:16
Nick
I just have a question. Have long you need to rest between sets? // Thanks
Steven's picture
Posted Sun, 10/02/2011 - 15:39
Steven
Rest about 90 to 120 seconds between most sets.
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Posted Mon, 10/10/2011 - 13:12
kamal.choudhury
hi steve,i am working gym last 2years but my body no devolp,high-5,9'' weight-75kl,
Steven's picture
Posted Thu, 10/13/2011 - 13:54
Steven
Hi Kamal, You want to focus on two things to maximize results: 1) Pushing yourself in the gym. Using good form, always push yourself on every set. When you can perform the recommended number of reps for a set, add weight. 2) Eat to maximize muscle gains. Here are some articles that can help: https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/how-to-create-a-bodybuilding-diet.html http://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/building-muscle-eating-like-a-bodybuilder.html
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Posted Wed, 10/12/2011 - 00:08
josh
Hey steve, I am looking to incorporate the big arms routine into my workout. My workout would be monday: chest tuesday: the big arm routine wednesday: rest (I have night school) thursday: shoulders&calves friday: cardio (soccer) saturday:legs sunday: cardio or rest I had a back injury a few months ago so I haven't been working it because I do not want it be injured even though it feels better now, I am wondering if my routine looks alright and if not how I could change it to be better. I am looking to lean out so slowly add muscle trying not to add any fat. Thanks.
Steven's picture
Posted Thu, 10/13/2011 - 13:55
Steven
Hi Josh, That looks good. You want to focus on two things to maximize results: 1) Pushing yourself in the gym. Using good form, always push yourself on every set. When you can perform the recommended number of reps for a set, add weight. 2) Eat to maximize muscle gains. Here are some articles that can help: https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/how-to-create-a-bodybuilding-diet.html http://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/building-muscle-eating-like-a-bodybuilder.html
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Posted Fri, 10/14/2011 - 06:34
Varun
Hi steve... I seriously need your Help......... I started gym after 3 long years, 10 weeks ago .... i gained 13lbs in last 10 weeks .... that is very good i think... without any supplement... i was doing one body part a day i.e. chest, sholder, back, leg, biceps, triceps. each day... i do the only exercise in the gym.... as m in sitting job working in front of computer.... somebody told me to change my schedule now as m following from last 2 months....... should i change it..../ if yes then what should be the best for me as i STill want to gain 12 to 13lbs more..... Please suggest me the best schedule.....my arms are not getting as big as other body parts.... My age is 26 weight is 154lbs height 171cm THANKS IN ADVANCE steve
Steven's picture
Posted Fri, 10/14/2011 - 14:14
Steven
If you are making progress I wouldn't change a thing. Post your workout on the forum and let us see it it needs refinement. http://www.muscleandstrength.com/forum/
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Posted Thu, 10/20/2011 - 09:01
paul
hi steve i dont have any cable equipment as i train at home could u give me an exercise to replace the cable ones please thanks paul
Steven's picture
Posted Sat, 10/22/2011 - 17:33
Steven
For tricep pushdowns you could use seated two arm dumbbell extention.
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Posted Tue, 11/01/2011 - 23:24
Eddie Dougherty
I'm 17 and around 170. Will this work? And am I suppose to use the Casein with the weeks of workout?
Steven's picture
Posted Fri, 11/04/2011 - 16:49
Steven
This workout is a good choice. You want to focus on two things to maximize results: 1) Pushing yourself in the gym. Using good form, always push yourself on every set. When you can perform the recommended number of reps for a set, add weight. 2) Eat to maximize muscle gains. Here are some articles that can help: https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/how-to-create-a-bodybuilding-diet.html http://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/building-muscle-eating-like-a-bodybuilder.html
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Posted Fri, 11/04/2011 - 15:39
M.G.
I'm three weeks into this workout, but I noticed a huge difference in mass after just the first workout and an even bigger difference in strength after three weeks. I was a bit discouraged after I had hit a plateau this shattered the plateau by far. Thanks for this great routine!
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Posted Fri, 11/04/2011 - 19:16
Will
Hey Steve i have used this workout routine for a couple months now and what im trying to achieve is getting more cut but at the same time my arms stay big.You have any suggestions?
Steven's picture
Posted Mon, 11/21/2011 - 13:44
Steven
You want to focus on two things to maximize results: 1) Pushing yourself in the gym. Using good form, always push yourself on every set. When you can perform the recommended number of reps for a set, add weight. 2) Eating to maximize muscle retention while cutting fat. Here are two articles that can help: http://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/your-go-to-guide-for-cutting-fat-while-keeping-muscle.html https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/how-to-create-a-bodybuilding-diet.html
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Posted Wed, 11/09/2011 - 02:03
jitendra
hi, i m doin workout since 1year and doin biceps n triceps 2x week want to know that can i follow directly last 2weeks schedule thanks
Steven's picture
Posted Mon, 11/21/2011 - 13:46
Steven
Certainly.
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Posted Tue, 11/29/2011 - 15:18
toby
I workout on just my biseps and triseps how many days a week should I work on that to get maximum grouth
Steven's picture
Posted Fri, 12/16/2011 - 11:39
Steven
If you are using this routine then once a week. You can work arms more frequently but you need to reduce the daily training volume.
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Posted Thu, 12/01/2011 - 16:53
Jeffrey Diegel
Hey Steve, I was on a weight gainer for a while and i am now up to about 215 pounds. Been lifting for year. What would be the best split for an intermediate to advanced lifter to have a split that includes this arm routine? Also, I am big on a arms and stress on big ones but also with tone. What would be the best arm workout in your mind? This one? Thanks!

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