The Tricep Exercise You STOPPED Doing (BIG MISTAKE!)

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There are a lot of tricep exercises that you can do if you want to build bigger triceps or arms in general. The problem is, not all of them are great at helping you to do that. In this video, I cover one of those tricep exercises that I feel has been unfairly labeled as one of those not capable of helping you to build big triceps.

The criticisms of the dumbbell kickback are many. First, those that do not like the exercise feel that it doesn’t allow you to generate enough force throughout the range of motion. That is a strange argument however, since most exercises (especially free weight exercises) don’t provide this opportunity. Because of the natural strength curves against gravity with dumbbell exercises, you are most commonly left with only a portion of the exercise that actually works under peak tension.

What further makes this a bad exercise however is that the area of the range that does provide peak tension is in the fully contracted state of the triceps muscle. This is a great advantage that not many other dumbbell tricep exercises allows us.

The second criticism of the tricep exercise, and probably the most common, is that you can’t load the exercise heavy enough to help you build muscle. The thing you have to consider is that the term “heavy” is relative to the exercise. For instance, lifting 50lbs on a bench press in each hand would be not be considered heavy but it could be considered heavy on a standing dumbbell curl. Remember, the only currency your muscles understand is tension.

If you perform the tricep kickback exercise with dumbbells that cause you to fail in the 10-12 rep range, you are using heavy enough weight to produce tension capable of making your triceps muscle grow. Forget getting caught up in the absolute amount of the weight you are using and instead focus on what the muscle feels and you will start getting your triceps to grow faster.

Finally, those against the tricep kickback argue that it causes injury to the shoulder and bad posture. That is a possibility if you cheat your way through the exercise and do it as I show you in the video, standing one arm at a time. In order to prevent either of these things from happening however, all you have to do is lay face down on an incline bench when you do this triceps exercise.

By laying down you stabilize the anterior shoulder and actually give your body something to post off of which will enable you to generate more force and lift more weight on the exercise. So those that said that you couldn’t load enough weight will find that not only can you increase the safety of the movement by doing it this way but you can overcome their second objection about it as well.

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