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RatioFitness

The best bicep curls for gymnastics

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RatioFitness

Seems like these would be better options than standing barbell curl because they put the bicep in a stretch.

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norbeex3

I think this has been discussed over a few times. The thing is that free weights are downright superior to machines, and you are better off with bodyweight since it strengthens your stabilizers.

If you want a curl that is useful in terms of gymnastics, use the Ring Curls slizzardman showed in one of he's videos, it will help you reach the reverse muscle-up sooner.

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Good Luck with them!

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Quick Start Test Smith

I think all of these are very good, particularly the one with the pulley system. That's full tension during the entire movement. All of these beat regular curls in my opinion.

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RatioFitness
I think this has been discussed over a few times. The thing is that free weights are downright superior to machines,

Where's the machines? Cable machines are free weights, even though they have the word "machine" in the name.

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norbeex3

Well I never considered cable machines as free weights since It is kinda limits the movement. I will read some articles about this but I doubt they fall into the category of free weights. Maybe between the two.

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Quick Start Test Smith

I think they do.

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D Nowell

"superior" is pretty subjective depending on the purpose. Any tool could possibly be put to productive use depending on the circumstance. Some good variations in this thread - even the recent Van Gelder video posted has some good old fashion dumbbell work.

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Rafael David

Check Poliquin's "Structural Balance for Upper Arms'' and "Top Seven Biceps Moviments". I started use them everyday with low intensity/volume in my upper body days as prehab and one day a week I do more heavy stuff, my goal is hit the Poliquin's structural balance on arms to avoiding injuries and get stronger (here the numbers:http://www.charlespoliquin.com/ArticlesMultimedia/Articles/Article/488/Structural_Balance_for_the_Upper_Arms.aspx).

Also, I rotate between them (doing a SSC) as Poliquin suggests and I felt the straight arm elements (e.g. planche, back lever) more easy since I introduce them in my program.

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Joshua Naterman

First off, I would like to share my opinion on cables. Used properly they are fantastic, able to deliver angles of loading that are practically impossible to duplicate with free weights. As always, a combination of exercises will work better than just 1 or 2.

You have to strengthen all the muscles of the arms from the hands to the shoulders if you want strong arms, and if you do that you will absolutely have an easier time with straight arm work. That is why there is so much prehab for these areas in the full GB program... you must train all these muscles to get the best results. This is fairly common sense once you start thinking about it a little bit.

All of those curling exercises are great. The exercise you use is less important than making sure that you train the muscles at various points in the ROM with full resistance (at that angle). That will mean different weights being used for supine back lever curls than standing biceps curls, for example. The leverage is such that you can't just use the same weight at each angle!

Don't worry about numbers, just focus on making everything stronger and you will be fine. This is yet another reason that rope climbs help so much.

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Jon Douglas
That will mean different weights being used for supine back lever curls than standing biceps curls, for example.

Off-topic, but this sentence totally made me realise that I should be trying back lever curls with my feet on the ground rather than 100% bodyweight suspended. Huh. Amazing to get those moments when you realise you've skipped a tiny but vital detail.

Cheers!

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Blairbob

I remember something that looked similar to this in the GB elbow series.

While it isn't a curl, I use a similar motion with therabands in my elbow prehab.

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Sailor Venus

Chin ups. Back of hands facing away. Preferably done on rings. Works your biceps AND your lateral muscles at the same time.

No need to do biceps curls with barbells or dumbbells ever again. That shit is for weight lifting/body building freaks.

Thread closed.

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RatioFitness

Wrong.

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Quick Start Test Smith

Yup. Sailor Venus, there is a place for bicep curls in certain situations. You are right, however, that the chin up is super great :)

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RatioFitness

Sailor Venus is going through that phase where you read on some website that tough guys only do multi-joint exercises and anyone that does a single joint exercise for any reason is a sissy. Most of us have probably been in that phase. I was, many years ago.

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yuri marmerstein

I heard somewhere that lifting weights can make you too heavy and muscle-bound

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Cole Dano

Just eat a can of spinach. :wink:

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MH87

Turn that upside down and you're doing curls. :o

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Joshua Naterman
Just eat a can of spinach. :wink:

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YES!

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Joshua Naterman
Chin ups. Back of hands facing away. Preferably done on rings. Works your biceps AND your lateral muscles at the same time.

No need to do biceps curls with barbells or dumbbells ever again. That shit is for weight lifting/body building freaks.

Thread closed.

Guys: Let's be nice.

Venus: There is no one particular way of training that is superior to the extent that nothing else is necessary. Coach's guys use dumbbells for all kinds of shoulder work. They also use bands. Many top competitors use dumbbells, barbells, and cable machines as well as bands. As it happens, both dumbbells and bands have their uses. You can control resistance in ways that are impossible with body-weight exercises, and you can also work angles that are impossible without spotters (if at all).

Everything has its place, and used properly there is a place for quite a few different training tools in a body-weight enthusiast's training :)

I'm glad you are enjoying what we do here and I hope that continues!

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Blairbob

I know of quite a few collegiate/elite level gymnasts who are either AA and do rings or ring specialists that do curls or DB work for elbow prehab/rehab.

And let's face it, most of them are working ring strength that 95% of us here never will. Be this B level ring strength or D/E level ring strength.

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Sailor Venus

Sorry pardon my ignorance. Soon as I looked at this thread, I haven't watched the videos nor have I read the whole thread thoroughly/properly and jumped at my own conclusion too soon.

Reason why I don't do bicep curls anymore is because of this:

Compound exercises work lots of muscles in the body in one go. (Squats work about 70% of your entire muscle mass). For instance, I rarely ever do bicep work outs because PULL UPS utilise the bicep in a much more natural fashion. My biceps are as big as they ever were doing curls.

I found this advice from a personal development website, can't show you it as it requires signing in.

My biceps are weird by the way. It can support my whole body weight (64 kgs/ 141 lbs) during chin ups but when comes to curling dumbells it could barely lift anything above 12.5 kgs (or 25 kgs if its a bar). Quite illogical, biceps lift my body weight but barely lift external objects... :/

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Jon Douglas

My biceps are weird by the way. It can support my whole body weight (64 kgs/ 141 lbs) during chin ups but when comes to curling dumbells it could barely lift anything above 12.5 kgs (or 25 kgs if its a bar). Quite illogical, biceps lift my body weight but barely lift external objects... :/

It's not weird; curls are biceps alone (well, almost), chin ups use more muscles and go through more joints. Like the diference between dips and the triceps press-downs you'd find in a strict no-leaning muscle up, for triceps obviously. Isolation makes the movement harder BECAUSE it's isolated and you can't recruit other muscles to take over the load, which is what makes 'strict' movements in the btgb program much harder than just getting through the movement (muscle-up, etc).

The point of a curl focus here isn't a vanity thing, its to protect elbows in and work on the biceps for more advanced pulling movements like the inverted chin-ups pictured above.

As a side note, I find that the harder pull-up variations require far more lats than biceps involvement, like l-sit wide-grip with a 2x shoulder width grip. There's no way I can initiate the pull from my biceps as I can in chin-ups, the leverage is too bad. If I relied on that to keep my biceps developing up to scratch for things like a reverse muscle-up then I would be spinning my wheels for a long time, despite the fact that I'd be developing strong vertical pulling. It's inefficient considering how much stronger lats are than biceps, when I can put the focus on the smaller muscles that need more work to get up to speed by using curls.

That doesn't even touch on multi-planar pulling and its benefits.

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Joshua Naterman
Sorry pardon my ignorance. Soon as I looked at this thread, I haven't watched the videos nor have I read the whole thread thoroughly/properly and jumped at my own conclusion too soon.

Reason why I don't do bicep curls anymore is because of this:

Compound exercises work lots of muscles in the body in one go. (Squats work about 70% of your entire muscle mass). For instance, I rarely ever do bicep work outs because PULL UPS utilise the bicep in a much more natural fashion. My biceps are as big as they ever were doing curls.

I found this advice from a personal development website, can't show you it as it requires signing in.

My biceps are weird by the way. It can support my whole body weight (64 kgs/ 141 lbs) during chin ups but when comes to curling dumbells it could barely lift anything above 12.5 kgs (or 25 kgs if its a bar). Quite illogical, biceps lift my body weight but barely lift external objects... :/

That's a pile of sh*t.

The biceps do very little work compared to brachialis and brachioradialis in a chin up. It's all about angles, and the angles in a chin up are not good for directly loading the biceps specifically. It just doesn't have a good line of pull until the very end of the ROM in a chin, which is where you have the most mechanical advantage.

You should be able to figure this out indirectly by what you just said. You have super weak biceps. It should be very, very clear to you that your biceps are not being strengthened very much by your chin ups. That, in turn, should help you to see that what that website is telling you is total bullsh*t with extra fiber to help it get all the way through your system.

The guy/girl's ARMS are probably as big as ever, but not the actual biceps themselves... unless he/she also has weak biceps.

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