Are you happy with your arm development? Do you have big baseball biceps and sculpted horseshoe triceps? Or are your arms lagging behind the rest of your physique?
If your biceps and triceps lack size and strength, it’s time to stop training them alongside your back and biceps and work them on their own. That way, you can prioritize your arms and put more energy into biceps and triceps workouts.
Not sure where to start? Don’t worry; we’ve got you covered.
Here’s a tried and tested arm workout for you to try. It’s a little different because it’s built around a less well-known bodybuilding system called Escalating Density Training. However, it’s this novel approach that makes this workout so darn effective.
So, say goodbye to your skinny arms and grab yourself a ticket to the gun show!
- 30-Minute Arm Workout – Overview
- 1a and 1b – Chin-up and Triceps dip
- 2a and 2b – EZ bar seated biceps curl and EZ bar skull crushers
- 3a and 3b – Cable hammer curls and rope pushdowns
- Bigger Arms In 30 Minutes – FAQ
- Wrapping Up
30-Minute Arm Workout – Overview
30 minutes doesn’t sound like long, but it’s more than enough time to train your arms if you organize your workout correctly. Do this work out once or twice a week to turn your peashooters into cannons!
For this program, you’ll be using a training system called Escalating Density Training, or EDT for short. You don’t do a predetermined number of sets or reps with EDT. Instead, your goal is to do as many reps as possible within a specified time frame.
In this instance, it’s ten minutes, and the exercises are paired, so you’ll work your biceps and triceps equally.
Simply do a set of the first exercise (designated 1a in the chart below) and then do a set of the next exercise (1b). Then, go back and forth between these two exercises for ten minutes. Try to clock up as many reps as you can in ten minutes.
On completion of exercises 1a and 1b, you simply repeat the process for 2a and 2b. Again, try to accumulate as many reps of each exercise in ten minutes.
Finally, move on to pairing 3a and 3b, and complete your final ten-minute training block.
Bigger Arms in 30 Minutes Workout
|EZ bar seated barbell curl
|EZ bar skull crusher
|Cable hammer curl
As you can see, the pairings have been given different loads – heavy, medium, and light. Adjust your weights so you can stay within the suggested repetition range. However, as you near the end of each ten-minute block, just push yourself to failure regardless of how many reps you actually perform.
There are two ways to do any exercise: the right way and the wrong way. The right way maximizes muscle tension, is easy on your joints, and produces the best results with the lowest risk of injury. The wrong way is usually less effective and riskier. So, given a choice, you should always choose the right way!
Follow these guidelines to ensure that you do each exercise correctly.
1a and 1b – Chin-up and Triceps dip
If you are thinking that chin-ups are a back exercise, you are right. That said, they’re also an excellent biceps exercise. In fact, if you take a moment to analyze the movement, you’ll see that they’re actually very similar to barbell biceps curls. The only real difference is that, instead of curling a bar up to your shoulders, you’ll be curling your shoulders up to the bar.
Just as chin-ups are good for building bigger biceps, dips can do the same for your triceps. As such, chin-ups and dips are the perfect arm-building pairing. Both chin-ups and triceps dips allow you to use heavy weights, which are helpful for building arm strength and muscle density.
How to do chin-ups:
- Hang from an overhead bar with an underhand, shoulder-width grip, so your feet are clear of the floor. Pull your shoulders down and back and brace your core.
- Bend your arms and, without kicking your legs or swinging, pull your chin up and over the bar, driving your elbows down and back as you ascend.
- Extend your arms and smoothly return to the starting position. Control your descent – don’t just drop.
How to do triceps dips:
- Use dipping bars that are roughly shoulder-width apart. Hold the bars with a neutral grip, palms facing inward. Support your weight on straight arms so that your feet are clear of the floor. Push your shoulders down and back and brace your abs.
- Keeping your upper arms close to your sides, bend your elbows and descend until your upper arms are roughly parallel to the floor. Keep your torso as upright as possible
- Extend your arms and repeat.
2a and 2b – EZ bar seated biceps curl and EZ bar skull crushers
While you can use a straight barbell for this pairing, an EZ bar will probably be more comfortable. Use the same weight for both exercises to ensure that you can move quickly from one exercise to the next. You’ll also need a bench for these exercises. However, you should be able to move from seated to lying and back again quickly and easily.
How to do EZ bar seated barbell curls:
- Sit on a flat exercise bench with your legs bent, feet planted firmly on the floor, and torso upright. Using an underhand, shoulder-width grip, rest and hold your EZ bar across your thighs.
- Without using your lower back or jerking the weight up, bend your arms and curl the bar up to your shoulders.
- Lower the bar back to your thighs, pause for one second and repeat.
How to do EZ bar skull crushers:
- Hold your EZ bar with an overhand, slightly narrower than shoulder-width grip. Lay flat on your bench and extend your arms, so the bar is directly over your shoulders.
- Keeping your upper arms vertical and stationary, bend your elbows and lower the bar to your forehead.
- Extend your arms and repeat.
3a and 3b – Cable hammer curls and rope pushdowns
Cable machine arm exercises are ideal for keeping your muscles under near-constant tension. This final pairing should provide a deep pump and burn. Hammer curls hit your biceps from a different angle, which is also true for rope triceps extensions. However, if you don’t have rope handles, you can also do this pairing with a straight or EZ bar.
How to do cable hammer curls:
- Attach a rope handle to a low cable machine. Grab the handles and stand with your arms straight and palms facing inward – a neutral grip. Pull your shoulders down and back and brace your core.
- Bend your arms and curl the handles up to your shoulders.
- Extend your arms and repeat.
How to do rope pushdowns:
- Attach a rope handle to a high pulley machine. Grab the handles and pull your upper arms down and into your sides. Your hands should be facing inward. Pull your shoulders down and back and brace your core.
- Extend your arms and push the handles down to the outside of your hips.
- Bend your arms and repeat.
Bigger Arms In 30 Minutes – FAQ
Got a question about this workout? We’ve got the answers!
1. Can I do regular sets and reps instead of EDT?
EDT is a non-conventional training method, and, as such, some people don’t like it. However, it is a very time-efficient way to organize your workouts. If you really don’t want to use EDT, just do three sets of each exercise pairing, resting 60-90 seconds between each one. This should equate to about 30 minutes.
2. Can I change some of the exercises?
Because you’ll be doing supersets, we’ve purposely chosen exercises you can do back-to-back. So, while you can perform different exercises, make sure you can still move from one to the next relatively quickly.
For example, you could take a pair of dumbbells over to where you are doing dips for the first pairing and do dumbbell curls instead of chin-ups. However, if it takes you more than a few seconds to get from one exercise to the next, you’ll negate some of the benefits of this workout.
3. Will this workout give me a biceps vein?
The high volume and short rest periods of this workout should provide your arms with a great pump. As such, your biceps vein may become more prominent. That said, if you really want to see it, you’ll need to get leaner so that it’s not obscured by a layer of fat.
You could also use blood flow restriction cuffs for the final exercise pairing, which may also make your biceps vein bulge more.
Finally, take a shot of pre-workout before doing this workout. Most contain vasodilating ingredients that open up your blood vessels, making your biceps vein stand out.
4. What supplements can I use to build bigger arms?
Contrary to what many people think, you don’t have to take supplements to build bigger arms. In theory, you should be able to get all the nutrients you need from the food in your diet.
That said, there are a few products that can help you make faster progress. Useful supplements include:
That’s not to say you need all or any of these supplements, but if you want to build bigger arms in less time, they could be helpful.
5. Can I do this workout every day?
Just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should! There is a fine line between doing enough training and doing too much. Intense workouts break your muscles down, and they need time to recover and grow. That means training your arms every day is not a good idea.
Instead, do this workout as part of a split routine, training the rest of your body on the remaining days of the week.
|Chest and back
|Shoulders & Arms (2)
There isn’t a bodybuilder alive who doesn’t want bigger, stronger arms. Even non-bodybuilders like the idea of having more muscular biceps and triceps!
Don’t leave your arm development to chance. Instead, dedicate one or two workouts per week to sculpting your high-caliber guns.
30 minutes might not sound like long, but using EDT means you can get a lot of work done in a comparatively short time. It also ensures that you work your biceps and triceps equally, which is critical for building aesthetically-pleasing arms.
So, do this work out once or twice a week to build the arms of your dreams!