10 Best Triceps Exercises for Mass
The triceps are often neglected. They are the ugly stepchild of the arm group family. Many people fail to realize that the triceps makes up over two-thirds of the arm muscle. Furthermore, developing triceps strength is one of the most important variables in increasing pushing movements including the bench and overhead press.
Since the triceps are a secondary muscle it aides in building strength and muscle hypertrophy in other areas of the body. You will never develop a full chest without solid triceps strength. There are many exercises that will help increase tricep strength but some will provide more results than others.
10 Best Triceps Exercises for Mass
#1 – Close grip bench press
The close grip bench press is one of the most effective triceps building muscle exercises due to the fact that it’s a compound movement that engages several muscle groups simultaneously. Barbell movements have been building mass and creating strength since the dawn of the bodybuilding era more than a century ago.
The movement has been a part of several bodybuilder routines over the years so when all else fails return to the basics.
#2 – Dips
Dips are the most basic triceps movements available in your arsenal. While a dip station may be preferred, they can also be done off a bench or even a chair right in the comfort of your home.
By varying the angle of the dip you can choose to either focus more on chest or tricep activation depending upon personal preference.
#3 – Skullcrushers
The name may be frightening if you are unfamiliar with this exercise. However, don’t be alarmed as the skullcrusher helps assist in building the long head of the triceps.
If the elbow hurts after performing this movement try using an EZ bar which will put less tension on the muscle group. Just don’t let the weight fall on your head.
#4 – French press
The French press more commonly referred to as the overhead dumbbell extension can be performed either in the seated or standing position. Standing while performing the movement will also help aide in building core strength as a secondary movement.
Be sure to keep the elbows locked tight closely to the body for extra emphasis on the long head of the tricep.
#5 – Close grip pushups
The standard military pushup movement is great for building the chesticle muscles. Bring those arms in slightly for one of the best triceps exercises around.
Keep the elbows closer to the body and focus on overloading the muscle in a controlled manner. If you want to make these particularly challenging have someone place a weight on your back for that extra bit of muscle overload.
#6 – Triceps rope pushdowns
This movement is one of the most common exercises seen around gyms across the world for the triceps. Since the arms are a smaller muscle group many will argue that cable movements will result in more muscle gains because of the constant tension throughout the entire movement.
Focus on only contracting the triceps by keeping your arms to the side.
#7 – Triceps kickbacks
Use a lighter weight for these movements as the main focus here should be on reaching full muscle extension. There is no need to ego lift while doing this exercise as we are aiming to keep the arms parallel to the ground.
Simply choose a light weight and focus on making that ever so important mind muscle connection.
#8 – Straight bar pushdowns
Another cable exercise that allows for overload of the triceps with constant tension is the straight bar pushdown. Keep your back straight and focus on bringing your forearms upwards until they are parallel to the ground.
There is no need to bring the weight all the way up to your chest.
#9 – Single arm triceps extensions
Once again go light while performing this particular movement as you don’t want to risk developing joint issues. The most important element of this exercise is getting the full range motion for maximum muscle development.
#10 – Reverse grip straight bar pushdowns
There are several solid movements that can be performed on a cable machine aimed at developing the triceps including the reverse grip straight bar pushdown. Keep the arms close to the body and hold the bar with your palms facing upwards and shoulder width apart.
Pull down until the triceps reaches its full extension. Although this movement is not common in many commercial gyms that doesn’t take away from it’s overall effectiveness.
Boom! Build Big Guns Now
The next time you see your gym buddy curling weights non-stop, leave him with a friendly reminder that the bicep is only one-third of the arm and his big brother the triceps is in need of some extra love and attention.
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