Ever wondered how some people have super strength when it comes to working with their hands? The kind of people who easily open tightly shut jars and bottle tops? Pros at tightly screwing bolts and nuts? Well, the secret is in their forearms. If keen, you will notice that handy people such as carpenters, truck drivers, and plumbers naturally have strong forearms because they constantly exercise their forearms muscles even without realizing it.
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Where muscle toning and fat burning is concerned, most people tend to solely focus on biceps, shoulders, abs and thighs. This may be because these are the areas that bulk up faster hence an appealing physique. However, certain areas such as the forearm are equally important and deserve ample attention as far as muscle building is concerned. Weak forearms equal inability to fully perform an activity with your arms. Basic activity such as lifting a water bottle off the floor will be an almost impossible task.
Importance of Working Your Forearm
The most visible muscles that are seen by other people if well pumped are forearms. Engaging your forearms will require you to increase your functional strength. Basically, this means that you need to perform exercises that activate your forearms by increasing grip strength.
(a) PowerLifting At The Gym
The difference between someone who lifts 50lbs of weight and the one that can only lift 5lbs is forearm strength. Weak forearms only enable you to perform light duties even in the gym. This way, your progress will be slow or even constant hence inability to notice any physical results as far as muscle development is concerned.
(b) Self Defense
In order for someone to be able to attack you, they need to have strong forearms. With weak ones, the best you can do is land a weak blow that will feel like a girlish slap. Wriggling yourself free from someone's grip will definitely be impossible if you cannot gather enough strength in your arms to push them away. With strong and masculine forearms, you will be able to hold your opponent down, wrap your arm around their neck to destabilize them, twist their arm behind their back or even hit them hence able to defend yourself.
Truth be told, your body would look much better if all areas were equally pumped. The last thing you need is a 'Popeye' effect on your body. If you choose to portion your work out in order to focus on different muscle groups for each session, it is best that you create time for your forearms.
Best Exercises For Your Forearms
1. Wrist Extensors
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You probably know now that every muscle group needs to be worked out mildly then gradually advanced to the pro level. Muscle extensors are exercises that enable you to move your muscles back and forth. All the eight muscles in this group are located in the exterior part of the forearm. Exercises that promote reverse grip movements will strengthen your forearms promptly. There are three specific workouts in this category that will help you achieve a satisfactory result within a short period of time.
(a) Barbell Reverse Wrist Curls
This workout can be performed while seated down or standing up. If you are a beginner, it is advisable that you try the latter then advance with time.
Sit on a bench and hold a barbell with both hands and with the palms facing down. See to it that the hands are shoulder width apart. For stability, your feet should be slightly wider that your hands and flat on the ground. The hands should be rested on the thighs with the back of your wrists resting at the top of your knees.
Lower the barbell gently as much as possible while moving your wrists only but maintaining a firm grip.
Next, curl the barbell high while flexing the forearms. Hold the pose for a second then lower the bar once more.
(b) Cable Reverse Curls
Stand upright while holding a cable curl equipment that's attached to a low pulley. Hold on to the handle bars with your palms down and spaced out at shoulder width. Squeeze your elbows in and curl the weights as you contract your biceps. Ensure that only your forearms move as you breathe out. Pull until the bar is at shoulder level and biceps fully contracted then bring the bar to the starting position.
(c) Standing Dumbell Reverse Curl
With your palms facing down, hands fully extended, and feet shoulder width apart, hold dumbells in each hand. Firmly lift the dumbells towards the shoulders as you contract your biceps. Hold for a second then bring the weights back to the starting position.
2. Wrist Flexors
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This group of muscles has 6 heads which include; flexor digitorum profundus, flexor digitorium superfisialis, flexor carpi ulnaris, flexor carpi radialis, palmaris longus and flexor pillicis longus. With the right workout, these will all partner up to support the workout. In order to fully engage and work the wrist flexors, incorporate exercises such as barbell wrist curls, cable wrist curls, and dumbells wrist curls into your routine.
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There are many exercises that you could perform to increase your forearm strength. When fully worked, it is clearly visible and intensely defined. The brachioradialis is the cord like muscle located in the upper outer part of your forearm. Unlike the wrist flexors, this one has only one head which is the brachioradialis itself. This muscle can be engaged by reverse barbell curls reverse cable curls, and dumbells hammer curls. The more reps you perform, the stronger and more defined this muscle will be.
In order to make your workouts more intense and fruitful, it is advisable that you avoid wearing wrist straps as they interfere with the stimulating effect of the workouts. Additional workouts such as boxing and workouts which incorporate a wrist curler will definitely yield more fruit. You could also incorporate an effective multivitamin for body building supplement into your diet. This will center your strength for more intense workouts hence stronger forearms. Remember to increase the reps and resistance as you go on. Stagnating in your comfort zone will only slow down progress.
Emily is founder of BodyShape101, a blog where she and her associates talk about exercise, fitness, and yoga. Their aim is to help people like you to achieve perfect body. BodyShape101 is concentrated on exercise & fitness tips, and making the most out of it. She is also a mother of one and she tries to find balance between her passion and her biggest joy in life.