Shaping Your Arms

by Lecia DeBrine
(last updated September 23, 2015)

To get beautifully shaped arms you only need a couple of weeks and the discipline to work on them. If you do not already have some, you might look into purchasing a set of hand weights ranging from three to ten pounds. These sets can be found in most sports stores and come with a rack for storage. The good thing about having a range of weights is that you can start with a smaller weight and work your way up as you progress. Working all of the muscles is important to obtaining a balanced shape to your arms. The focus will mainly be on your biceps and triceps, but the other muscles will benefit from these moves as well.

The bicep, located at the front of your upper arm, is a commonly used and easily worked muscle. Almost every arm movement will include your bicep. Here are two ways to work this muscle:

  1. Bicep Curl. This is a basic but good move to shape the front of your arms. Holding weights comfortably in your hands extend your arms at your side with palms facing forward. Secure your elbows tight to your body and alternately bend them bringing the weights up and then lowering them in a smooth slow motion.
  2. The Plank. This is a yoga pose that not only strengthens your arms, but your core muscles as well. Lie on the floor, face down, with your hands at shoulder level. Take a deep breath and push yourself up using your arms, legs, and core muscles keeping your back straight. Once you are balanced on your arms and feet hold the position for twenty seconds, the release and rest before you do it again.

Because the triceps are located on the back of the arm it does not get as much use and is a little tricky to work. But there are some simple moves you can do to shape it.

  1. Overhead Extension. This is a great way to strengthen your triceps and can be done quite easily. Start by grasping a weight with both hands and your arms almost fully extended above your head. Keeping your elbows close to your head, lower the weight behind your head until your arms form a ninety-degree angle at the elbow. Slowly bring the weight back up to starting position.
  2. Tricep Dip. This move is one of the best methods to strengthen and shape your triceps. Facing away from a sturdy chair or coffee table place the heels of your hands on the edge. Walk your feet out until they are about thirty inches away from your hands, your knees will still be bent. Slowly lower your body and hold it for a count of five before pushing yourself back up to the beginning position.

The amount of repetitions is up to you but remember that you will want to do multiple sets, so don't overexert yourself on the first one by doing too many repetitions. Plan on working your arms three times a week for at least fifteen minutes and in about three weeks you will start to see results.

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