The science is in!
If you want bigger biceps, this is maybe the most important article you’re ever likely to read.
Just recently the American Council on Exercise commissioned exercise scientists at the University of Wisconsin to find out what the most effective biceps exercise was.
8 male and 8 female experienced lifters were used in the study  to test the following 8 exercises:
- Cable curl
- Barbell curl
- Concentration curl
- EZ Curl (both wide and narrow grip)
- Incline curl
- Preacher curl
Total muscle activity was measured via wireless electromyography (EMG) machine. Electrodes were placed on the biceps brachii, anterior deltoid, and the brachioradialis.
And here are the results…
As you can see, it seems that Arnold Schwarzenegger was right back in the day. The concentration curl came top.
I personally believe that if they had have combined the cable curl and the preacher curl into a cable preacher curl, it would have proven to be most effective.
The researchers noted,
“…the activation of the anterior deltoid was significantly less in the concentration curl than most of the other exercises. This may be because during a concentration curl, the humerus is pressed against the leg and does not allow the upper arm to sway, which isolates the biceps.”
This also occurs in a cable preacher curl, resulting in better isolation of the biceps. It will also maximize muscle fiber recruitment and allow for more intense contractions. Here’s a video of me performing cable preacher curls from a few years ago…
The conclusion of the study was as follows…
“When you look at it, the concentration curl was significantly better than anything else. And I think the reason is that you’re really isolating the biceps muscle more so than in any of the other exercises.”
Just out of interest, I’d LOVE these electromyography tests done on compound exercises to show all those “compound only” heads out there how ineffective their workouts really are for certain body parts. When they tell you that bench presses and overhead presses are all you need to work your arms, the results would clearly show the pitiful stimulation the biceps and triceps are really getting. Sorry 5×5 guys, it’s just not happening.
While we’re on the subject, I’d also like you to check out a video I made recently called 3 New Tips For Bigger Biceps…
If you want the FULL package of training designed specifically to make you bigger (including your arms), download my THT training program free below
I recently saw this comment on my YouTube channel…
Of course, don’t forget the Arms Blast Experiment workout that can produce rapid increases in arm size due to the “hyperintense” protocol I developed. Hyperintense basically means training at MORE THAN 100% intensity, MORE THAN your 1 rep max – yes it’s possible. Click here for more details.
Enjoy your next arms workout!
If you have any questions or I can help you in any way, comment below.
Train With Intensity!
 ACE Study Reveals Best Biceps Exercises. Young S, Porcari JP, Camic C, Kovacs A, Foster C et al. Acefitness.org. July 2014.
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