Cheltenham Club

Mon 22 Jun, 2015

Beginner’s Guide to… Bicep Curls and Dips


Since strong has become the new sexy, people have begun embracing upper body exercises more than ever before. Lifting weights has become especially popular among females due to its popularity in the media and it is no longer being feared by women as something that will make them bulky.

So, if you’re interested in learning how to build up your arms to compliment a fit physique, take a look at some of our beginner moves and tips on how to maximise the results of your upper body training:

Bicep Curls:

This is definitely the most straightforward move you can start with to accustom your body to using your arm muscles. There is no set weight to start with when using dumbbells, some people may feel comfortable beginning at 5kg and others at 15kg. It is important to start with a manageable weight, nothing too light or too heavy, as you want to be able to feel some impact. You can start doing simple bicep curls by standing straight and flexing your arms up towards your chest and back down for several sets.

fitness, sport, bodybuilding and weightlifting concept - close up of young woman and personal trainer with dumbbells flexing muscles in gym

If this is too simple you can incorporate a lunge dip into the mix. Just lunge forward and lift the weights as you lunge, which will give you a more effective workout. Make sure that you are doing this a few times a week with a day break in between to let your muscles recover, then slowly work your way up to bigger weights to really start seeing a difference.

Another variation of the bicep curl can also benefit your shoulders for a more productive workout. Once you have performed a bicep curl, continue to lift your arm up towards the ceiling at a straight angle, whilst rotating your palms forward. Lower your arms back down into resting position and repeat for a few sets.

Tricep Dips:

This is another simple move that can be performed at the gym which doesn’t require weights. Instead grab a bench and put your feet flat on the floor with your knees roughly at a 90 degree angle and your hands placed firmly on the bench on either side of your hips. Proceed to bring your glutes downwards which will bring your arms from a straight position to a 90 degree angle. Once you are in this position pull yourself back up using your tricep muscles. Although this is a simple move it does require a lot of energy so you can do this nearer the beginning of your workout when you are not feeling as exhausted. If you are struggling to bring yourself down to a 90 degree you can begin at an angle that feels more comfortable and work your way up from there.

Side Raise:

If you’re working on your arms you want to work on your shoulders too to create a more streamlined and proportionate physique. Starting with your dumbbells by your side you can lift your arms outwards into a 180 degree angle. Bring them back down into resting position and repeat for a few sets.

Muscular ripped bodybuilder with dumbbells

Once you have mastered these moves you can go on to using more complex equipment and weights such as kettlebells, which can work many other areas of your body simultaneously, helping you towards achieving a well-rounded strengthened body.