The Top Tricep Exercise
for Tone and Definition

When it comes to the top tricep exercise, variety is truly the spice of life. If you want to build large, conditioned tricep muscles, then you need to use variety in your tricep exercises and vary your strength training routine.

This exercise will target muscles on the back of your arms. Some of the most common exercises for triceps involve straightening your arms with added resistance to condition and tone the triceps. These exercises include extensions, dips, and kickbacks.

If you are a beginner to using this exercise for toning and conditioning, it is best to start out with 1 to 2 exercises and to perform 2 sets of 12 reps three times per week.

If you are intermediate or advanced in your tricep training, then you can use 5 to 6 different tricep exercises performed in 2 to 3 sets at 12 repetitions each.

When using this exercise for strength training, remember to always rest between your sets. It is also important to only use enough weight to complete your desired amount of repetitions.

Using too little weight will not provide a challenge, and using too much weight will cause strain and make it difficult for you to use the proper form in the exercise.

Tricep Exercise: Kickbacks/Extensions

The kickback is a popular exercise for the triceps that requires you to straighten your arms to engage your triceps.

1. To perform a basic tricep kickback, bend over at the waist in a 90° angle with your arms bent at 90° angles by your side.

2. Hold a dumbbell in each hand, and slowly extend your elbows completely to feel your triceps engage.

This challenging exercise is much more difficult than it may seem. If you are new to the tricep kickback, then you may need to start out with less weight and increase gradually as your arms grow stronger.

To make the tricep kickback even more difficult, you can perform the exercise standing on one leg.

* You can also perform a tricep extension in a similar way by lifting one dumbbell in both hands directly over your head. This will again cause your elbows to extend completely so that all of the weight resistance is placed on the tricep for training.

Tricep Presses

One of the best exercises is the tricep press. This exercise will again require you to straighten your arms, but since you will be lying down, gravity will add even more resistance.

The basic tricep press is called the skull crusher.

1. This tricep exercise is performed by lying flat on the ground with your knees bent.

2. Place your arms at a 90° angle close to your sides with your elbows aligned with your chest.

3. Grip the dumbbells with your hands in an overhand position, and slowly extend your arms until your elbows are straight. At the top of the motion, the dumbbells should be in the air directly over your chest.

* This exercise can also be performed by changing up the hand grip similar to a hammer curl. You can perform the tricep press exercise in the same motion with the palms of your hands facing inward.

Tricep Dips

A simple tricep exercise to perform if you don’t have any weights is the tricep dip. This can be done on a chair or any sturdy object around your house.

1. To perform the tricep dip, sit at the very edge of a chair, supporting your weight with your elbows. It is best if your legs are straight out in front of you, but you can bend your knees as necessary to reduce the resistance.

2. To perform one repetition, slowly lower your glutes off of the chair and down toward the floor.

3. Bring your body back up to starting position without sitting on the chair to complete a repetition.

This basic tricep dip is advanced and much more difficult than it may seem. However, you can count on seeing real results from using tricep dips regularly to dramatically tone and condition your arms.

As your arms get stronger, you can begin to straighten your legs and move them out farther from the chair to provide even more of a challenge.

Return to Arm Exercises

Return from Tricep Exercise to Health and Fitness 

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