The perfect forearm workout should consist of exercises for not just wrist extension and flexion but other important forearm actions as well. That said, even that doesn’t make the forearm workout complete. In order to round out your forearms with a well rounded workout you need to fill in the gaps of what is lacking on those popular forearm exercises and put science back in your training. That is what we do in this video.
The problem with wrist curls and extensions isn’t just that they train simply a fraction of what the forearms are capable of but also in that many people do these two exercises incorrectly. For instance, if you look at the wrist curls for the palm side of your forearms you will see two major errors in performing them either with your elbows rested on a bench or standing with the bar in front of your thighs.
First, the gravity loaded nature of both will tend to push the bar further into the fingers as you fatigue. This is very problematic given that we have already identified in great detail how the strain on the distal finger tendons is one of the most common causes of medial elbow tendonitis and flare ups. The second major issue, particularly in the standing curl variation, is the tendency of the biceps to want to contribute to the curl and take over for the forearms. This will result in an understimulated and underdeveloped forearm muscle.
Instead, you will want to turn your hand over and perform the prone wrist curl shown in the video. The advantages of this are not only that they eliminate the contribution of the biceps to the exercise but it also prevents strain on the elbow. Remember, forearm work is often done multiple times per week given their high tolerance to volume and predominance of slow twitch muscle fibers. Accumulating high volume in a compromised setup will be magnified here and must be avoided.
In between all sets of this perfect forearm workout you are going to do one of the best slow twitch forearm muscle activators – the farmers carry. Grab a pair of heavier dumbbells and walk one lap around the gym back to the starting point to perform your second and final set of each exercise. If you are just starting out you can perform just one carry per exercise when you are splitting up right and left sides to ease into the overall volume.
Next you want to perform your reverse wrist extensions for the top sides of your forearms standing as well. This is because when performed on the edge of a bench you often times will remove the tension from the forearms in the peak contracted state (not what you want to do if you are trying to build bigger forearms). When done in standing, I prefer to do them as a reverse wrist roll for time paired up in ladder style with a reverse barbell curl to hit the brachioradialis (another prominent muscle in the forearm).
A complete forearm workout will also not forget to include exercises for radial and ulnar deviation as well as supination and pronation to hit all of the key functions of the area. Deep finger flexors are also integrated to be sure not to overlook the importance these muscles play on the overall size of the forearm given all of their muscle bellies lie within the forearm itself.
Here is how to construct the perfect forearm workout:
1. PRONE WRIST CURLS – 2 x 12-15RM **
2. WRIST CURL LADDER – 2 x LADDER FAILURE **
A. REVERSE WRIST ROLLS x 1,2,3,4, etc seconds
B. REVERSE BARBELL CURLS x 1,2,3,4 etc reps
3. RADIAL / ULNAR DEVIATION – 2 x 12-15RM **
4. SUPINATION / PRONATION – 2 x 12-15RM **
5. CLIP GRIP COMBO – 2 x SUPERSET TO FAILURE **
A. CLIP SQUEEZES TO FAILURE
B. CLIP SQUEEZE WRIST ROCKS TO FAILURE
6. DEAD ARM HANG BURNOUT x 1 MINUTE
When you put this together in the format as I’m suggesting here, you not only now hit the forearms through their full range of motion but you hit every function of the this multi joint influenced muscle group as well. The supersets and ladders allow for an intensification of the workout to ensure that you are creating enough overload to spark growth in these muscles.
This is just one example of how to apply science to your forearm workouts. If you want to train like an athlete you want to put science back in every workout you do. You can do that with the ATHLEAN-X Training Programs available at http://athleanx.com or click the link below and get started right away on building a ripped, muscular, athletic body.
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