Dealing with Flabby Arms

by April Reinhardt
(last updated March 20, 2009)

When you lift your arm to wave goodbye, does your underarm keep jiggling long after you've stopped waving your hand? If so, then this article is for you! Flabby underarms can be annoying for both men and women. What causes our underarms to become flabby? As we age, we lose collagen and elastin, which are elastic proteins in our connective tissues. When we lost those proteins, our skin loses the ability to snap back into place, and then it begins to sag. What this means for underarm skin is that it hangs from the frame of the arm because it is so loose—resulting it what we call flab.

No matter what you call it, most people view flabby arms as unsightly. In extreme cases, flabby arms can be more than a mere annoyance. People who have lost extreme amounts of weight in a relatively short period of time wind up with sagging underarms, with surgery as an only option to reduce the skin mass. However, there are ways to deal with slight arm jiggle, without spending money for surgery. Here are some exercise tips for toning the muscle under the fat:

  • Using a lightweight, such as a large can of soup or a small barbell, hold the weight in your hand and extend your arm straight up. Keeping your arm close to your head, lower the forearm behind you until your forearm touches your bicep. Perform twenty slow repetitions, and then switch to your other arm and repeat the exercise.
  • With the same lightweight in your hand, stand and allow your arm to fully extend down. Extend your arm back with the elbow nearly locked. Perform twenty slow repetitions, taking care not to swing your arm. Allow your muscles to do the work. Switch arms and repeat the exercise.

If you find that exercising simply won't tone your flabby arms, yet you don't want to undergo surgery to correct the problem, you can conceal the flab with clothing. If you still like to wear tank tops or camisoles, pair them with a thin sweater or jacket in warm weather, and heavy jackets or shrugs in cold weather. Shop for shirts and blouses with wider sleeves to help camouflage upper arms. If you want to wear a tank top while exercising at home, go ahead! If you're self-conscious about your flabby arms when using a public gym, simply wear a very loose tee shirt. If you have a gorgeous red halter dress that you want to wear for a special occasion, pair it with a complimentary cropped shrug or jacket. Don't deny yourself wearing that dress on your special evening. Just find a way to deal with your flabby arms, make yourself feel confident and beautiful by covering areas of concern, and have a wonderful time.

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Author Bio

April Reinhardt

An admin­istrator for a mutual fund man­age­ment firm, April deals with the writ­ten word daily. She loves to write and plans to author a memoir in the near future. April attend­ed More­head State Uni­ver­sity to pursue a BA degree in Ele­men­tary Edu­ca­tion. ...


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