Whether you are a fitness geek or not, you must be aware of the importance of biceps in bodybuilding. The famous arm-flexing pose of bodybuilders is something we all have seen every once in a while.
But how do they achieve such high peaks? Well, the secret lies in long head bicep exercises. They are also known as bicep peak exercises as they increase the peak of your bicep muscles.
So, if you are into bodybuilding and want to train the long head of your biceps, then you are at the right place.
Here is everything you need to know about the Long Head Biceps and the five best exercises to achieve huge peaks.
Location and Function of the Long Head Biceps
Biceps are thick, long muscles located on the upper arms, from shoulder to elbow. The long head bicep is located on the lateral side of the arm.
This muscle stretches when you open your arms and contracts while flexing your arms.
Long head and short head biceps combined also help supinate the forearm. Other than that, it also supports the lifting of the shoulder along with other muscles in the back.
Training your long head biceps will make these actions a lot smoother and add extra strength to your arms.
Targeting Long Head and Short Head Biceps
Now that you know what long head and short head biceps are, it’s time to learn how to target those specific muscles for bodybuilding. The short head muscle aids in the function of long head biceps.
In short, even though these are two different muscles, they can also work together to support the shoulder and supinate the forearms. Therefore, when it comes to bodybuilding, you must target these muscles separately to increase their size and strength of these muscles.
However, all long head bicep exercises will require a little assistance from the short head muscle. You have to limit the stretching in the short head bicep to target the long head bicep and vice versa.
To target the long head muscles, focus on exercises that include flexing your biceps. It will help you achieve the iconic bodybuilder muscle peak whenever you flex your arm.
5 Best Exercises for Huge Peaks and Bigger Arms
A few exercises can help develop long head biceps faster and more efficiently. They specifically target the long head muscle through flexing and limited stretches.
Here are the five best long head bicep exercises to increase the height of your biceps:
Cable curl is one of the most popular long heads bicep exercises that you can do in gyms. However, it requires a cable machine that equally distributes the tensions in your biceps.
It is a long head bicep muscle isolation exercise. However, short head muscles and other surrounding muscles can play a minor role in this workout.
- Hold the cable of the machine, so you have a firm grip on the handle.
- Stretch the cable towards your chest without moving your legs, core, or chest.
- Hold your arms in this position for a few seconds to increase muscle tension in your upper arm.
- Release your arms and get back into the starting position.
- If you are a newbie, start with three sets of 10 to 12 repetitions.
Chin up is a great overall workout to tone your back, chest, and shoulder muscles. It is also great for improving bicep and tricep muscle strength.
You need a metal rod hanging a few inches above your height horizontally for this exercise. This way, you can move in upwards and downwards direction while doing chin-ups.
- Grab the metal rod firmly with both palms facing you.
- Next, lift your body weight with the support of the rod so your chin goes above the bar.
- Make sure to keep your head straight. Do not lift your chin up.
- Lower your body back down till you reach the ground, and your arms are straight.
- Do 10 to 12 repetitions of chin-ups regularly for stronger and bigger upper arms.
Hammer curls specifically target the long head biceps. In this exercise, you hold the dumbbells vertically instead of horizontally. It increases the straightness in your muscles due to gravity.
It is one of the most practiced long head bicep exercises among bodybuilders. For toned biceps, you can opt between regular dumbbell curls and hammer curls on alternate days.
- Stand with your feet in line with your shoulder and hold biceps vertically in your hands, so they are parallel to your body.
- Keep your elbows tucked to your core and raise your forearms to your shoulders without moving your elbows.
- Pause and squeeze for a second as your hand reaches the top to exert more tension on your biceps.
- Next, slowly take your hands down, so they are parallel with your thighs again.
- Repeat these steps 40 to 50 times.
Incline Dumbbell Curls
Incline dumbbell curls target your long head and short head biceps. Therefore, it is best to start your workout with this easy exercise that causes fatigue in the long head biceps.
You can choose various degrees on an incline for this workout, depending on your skill level. It heavily trains your biceps, resulting in bigger muscles.
- Sit on a bench with a backrest keeping your body at a 45-degree incline. You can change the degree of your incline according to your preference.
- Hold dumbbells in an underhand grip and let your arms hang down in a way that they are perpendicular to the floor.
- Slowly lift your forearms towards your chest, keeping your elbows in place. Your elbows should stay where they are, and your upper arm should stay at rest.
A preacher bench is used to restrict movement in your legs and back, so all the focus is concentrated on your biceps.
You can use a barbell or EZ bar for this variation of long head bicep exercises. It is a complete isolation bicep exercise that effectively grows your long head bicep.
- Sit on a preacher bench, so the movement of your back and legs is restricted.
- Hold an EZ bar or barbell in your hands while the triceps of both your hands lie straight on the front padding. It will give support to your upper arm while doing the curls.
- Bring your forearm up towards your face while focusing the pressure on your biceps.
- Pause and squeeze your arms in for a second for added tension.
- Release the tension and go back to the starting position.
- Do 3 to 4 sets of 10 repetitions for the eBay results.
Best Equipment for Long Head Bicep Exercises
According to studies, using material weights and mechanical tension can effectively increase your muscle size. The more weight you lift, the bigger your muscles can be.
Here is the most common workout equipment that is used in long head bicep exercises:
A barbell is the most common equipment used in weight training. It consists of a long rod with weights attached at both ends.
They allow you to lift more weight than a dumbbell, increasing muscle tension in your biceps, shoulders, and chest. Furthermore, they increase muscle endurance without requiring much stabilization.
A dumbbell is a smaller weight lifting equipment that is used one hand at a time. They usually contain less weight than a barbell.
They are the best option for long head bicep exercises as they provide more targeted muscle activation. In addition, they also provide more muscle movement options.
The EZ bar looks like a barbell but with a zig-zag rod. These zig zags are in the shape of an “M.” It is highly effective equipment for beginners as well.
They are designed to provide a better grip on your hands and reduce stress from your wrists, especially when doing bicep curls.
Common Mistakes with Biceps Peak Exercises
Toning and building your muscles up is no joke. Just following the best long head bicep exercises won’t give you that bodybuilder peak. Instead, you need to be consistent and avoid common mistakes that people make with long head bicep exercises.
Here are the five most common mistakes that can slow down your muscle-building process:
No Focus on Tension
The main mistake that most bodybuilders make is not focusing enough on putting tension on their muscles. Muscle tension is the main factor that contributes to stronger and bigger biceps.
Putting strain on your long head bicep using weights is the ideal way to build muscles.
For example, when it comes to long head bicep exercises, you need to hold the weight down for a little longer to increase tension in your muscle. You will feel a little burn in your long head bicep muscle while holding your weight down compared to flexing your arm back.
Lifting Too Much Weight
Lifting weight is necessary for building muscles. However, lifting too much weight can cause more harm than good.
When you are focusing on a bicep workout, it is ideal to opt for lighter weights with maximum repetitions for the best results.
Carrying too much weight will also limit your arm movement that can hinder the growth of your long head biceps. Start with 40 to 50 repetitions with lighter weights to train your muscles, and gradually increase the weights as you go.
Lack of Variation
Doing the same workout over and over again will only tire your muscles instead of activating different parts of your biceps. The human body quickly adapts to a routine, so those actions start becoming your muscle memory.
These actions don’t activate your muscles to work harder and become more prominent.
To add some variation to your workout, make sure to change your grip style, grip width, and sometimes even the amount of weight. You can also try out different warm-ups to wake your body up and get ready for muscle training.
Don’t Aim for Muscle Failure
Most trainers suggest tiring your bicep muscles before working out to exert more strain on the long head bicep. However, this does not mean that you need to aim for complete muscle burnout.
It will not only affect the quality of your long head bicep exercises but can also cause muscle injuries. To induce a feeling of fatigue in your muscles, you can do bicep isolation workouts at high-intensity repetitions with isometric breaks during the highest tension.
Cheating Too Much
Having cheat days while you are following a fitness-focused lifestyle is a good relief. However, make sure that your cheat days are not every other day.
Most people opt for swinging motions while bringing their forearm back up during bicep curls.
This swinging motion is good for exhausting your biceps but will not provide any long-term gains. Following proper instructions for long head bicep exercises will help increase your muscle mass so you can reach your goals faster, without cheating.
Targeting long head biceps to achieve high muscle peaks is one of the most common practices among bodybuilders and fitness enthusiasts. With these five best long head bicep exercises, you can train your muscles to be stronger and toned.
Incorporating these exercises into your everyday workout routine can help you reach your goal of getting bigger arms. These muscles are relatively easier to train; therefore, it is the most commonly targeted by new bodybuilders.
If you want to focus more on aesthetics, then concentration curls can give you those pronounced peaks you see on social media.
Furthermore, make the most use of your dumbbells and barbells for the best results.