Comments Off on 3 Reasons Why Barbell Curls are not the Best Way to Build Big, Muscular Biceps

Whether you’re trying to build big, muscular biceps at home or at a gym, you must understand the limitations and drawbacks of standard barbell curls. Like many beginning bodybuilders, when I started my arm training I thought barbell curls were best for building big, muscular biceps. But it wasn’t long before I learned that this exercise is extremely limited for reaching this goal. This limitation results from the following 3 problems that often occur with barbell curls.

First, most guys perform barbell curls in a free-standing position. This means that the exercise is done while standing upright without leaning back against a wall. The problem with this position is that it allows your upper body to jerk or sway and use momentum to move the weight through the curling motion. Each repetition completed this way deprives your biceps the work they’re supposed to get during this exercise.

If you insist on doing barbell curls, one solution to this problem is to perform this exercise with your back leaning against a wall. This back support will prevent the torso movement that enlists too much help from your back and shoulders. But even when you do barbell curls in this superior technical position, you may still encounter the second problem that I experienced with this exercise.

When I first started doing barbell curls, I noticed that they caused sharp pain in the deep tissue on the back of my forearms. I then discovered that the hand position required to do this exercise put extremely painful stress on my forearms. Though I suffered no actual injury, I had to find a way continue building my biceps that wasn’t so painful. At this point I discovered the cambered or “EZ Curl” bar and my forearm pain disappeared!

If you find that barbell curls cause pain in your forearms, try doing your standing curls (with your back against a wall) with an EZ Curl bar. You’ll find that the narrow and wide grip positions are much more comfortable than working with a straight barbell.

Additionally, for preacher curls – which are the best biceps builders ever – the EZ Curl bar is far superior to the straight barbell. The preacher bench position makes it nearly impossible to control a straight barbell without putting painful stress on the wrists. But the EZ Curl bar allows you to control the weight comfortably throughout the curling motion.

The third and final problem I’ve found with standard barbell curls is the limited angle of resistance placed on the biceps. Surprisingly, I still find that when I ask guys to describe what they do to build up their biceps, many of them say barbell curls and little or nothing more. These same guys then complain that they’re completely frustrated with their lack of arm training progress. The problem, of course, is that you can’t build big, muscular biceps with barbell curls alone. To add maximum size, strength and shape to your biceps you’ve got to train them from every possible angle – and that means you’ve got to workout with dumbbells!

No biceps building program can succeed without heavy emphasis on dumbbell training. To this end, your workouts should consist primarily of concentration curls, dumbbell preacher curls, seated alternating curls and my signature Winston Curls. If you’re really serious about building big, muscular biceps, there’s no getting them without heavy doses of dumbbell work.

So, don’t worry if you’re having problems building up your biceps with barbell work alone. Just start working with an EZ Curl bar and dumbbells and you’ll see immediate improvement. In fact, you’ll probably find that you don’t need to do any barbell curls to build big, muscular biceps. How do I know that this is really possible? Because I built my 20-inch GUNS without using barbell curls at all.

Comments are closed.