Curl of your dreams!By Oxygen's Staff Blog|Oxygen Staff|2012-09-12 | Comments: 0
Confession: I love working my biceps. There’s something empowering about staring yourself down in the mirror and mentally urging your reflection to bend that elbow just one more time (and downright scary if, mid-set, that vein in the middle of your forehead decides to make itself known; you know what I’m talking about).
But my major beef with my bi’s workouts is that there is a relatively short list of exercises that you can do to isolate this muscle group. Think about it: how many ways can you possibly bend your arm at the elbow? (Changing equipment and body position notwithstanding, of course.) That’s why it excites me when I discover a new biceps exercise – especially one that can be easily done in almost any well-stocked gym, like this one.
Cross-body cable rope curl
Set Up: Stand sideways to the weight stack of a cable machine with a rope attachment set to the lowest pulley setting. Grab one end in the hand closest to the anchor point, and take a few steps to the side until you feel tension in the cable. Tuck the elbow of your working arm into the side of your body, and extend your hand towards the weight stack.
Action: Without shifting your weight from side to side, flex your elbow and bring the rope handle up and across your body to touch it to the far side of your chest. Slowly return to the start, and repeat. When you set is through, do a 180 and work your other arm. Start with two sets of 15 reps on each arm; after a few weeks, increase the weight and aim for three sets of 10 reps (each side, of course).
- Watch your upper arm – it should remain glued to your arm throughout the exercise
- No rope attachment in sight? Use a D-handle instead
- This exercise can also be completed with a dumbbell, but using a cable allows for tension throughout every phase of each rep
- If you find the weights are slamming down between each repetition, step a little further away from the machine
- Do this move in front of a mirror if possible. Yes, it’s mainly for checking your form, but a fringe benefit is seeing your bad self eke out a set of reps. (You’ll be impressed with your peak, I swear!)
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