When you are working out there is a normal way to do and then there is the “not normal” to do it. Choosing the latter will help you make significant gains in developing muscles. And the best part is that you do not need to bother your trainer with these techniques, just your friend or a spotter would suffice. For the ease of understanding these tricks, we will focus only on the biceps workout variations. You can use your logic to train the other parts.
- When you are lifting a barbell or dumbbell and you reach the top position, pick a count (ideally three or five), and hold. While you are holding squeeze the biceps as hard as you can. This method helps you stop and squeeze thus putting the biceps under more tension. Otherwise, you would just lower the weight and repeat the normal routine.
- The next technique called partial reps is loved by those who like to leverage their strong point. It emphasizes on the range of motion of an exercise where you are stronger. For example, many people find it hard to lower the bar entirely before lifting it up. After completing the normal set you can choose heavier weights that you are comfortable with a certain range of motion.
- Two birds with one stone. Here start with your arm at full extension and lift, but stop halfway down while lowering. From this position lift again, but this time lower the bar to the initial starting position. Repeat this method and count it as one rep.
- There is a technique called 21s. Here you can start with seven-half reps, i.e. stop the bar halfway; after completing this start from half way and go all the way to the top, repeat it seven times; now finish off the set with the complete range of motion, again for seven reps.
- Try the variable resistance technique by attaching resistance bands to the bar. The best part of this method is that the weights feel lighter at the bottom half but as soon as you move up, the resistance increases, putting more pressure on the biceps.
- Increase the time under which the muscle is in tension. Slow down the speed or tempo at which you raise and lower the weight. You need a partner to assist you with heavier weights. Many trainers agree that the more time your muscle is under tension, the stronger it becomes. This method can be used for positive and negative reps. You can also complement explosive reps with slow reps for better results. The reason behind this is the faster anabolic hormone response.