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The Triceps Kickback

So you want to work on your triceps eh?

Well then there is a fantastic exercise called the Triceps Kickback.

This particular exercise is great for toning the underside of the arm (the triceps) which for some people are notorious for being flabby because fat likes to accumulate there. To reduce the fat you will need to do cardio, but if you're looking to build muscle there then you will want to do exercises which use the triceps a lot.

It's only January right now but it's not too early to prepare for the summer, and last minute vacations to warmer destinations than freezing Toronto.

(I was outside skating yesterday at Ramsden Park near Rosedale and I eventually decided it was too cold even for me and went home.)

How To Do A Triceps Kickback

1. This exercise can be performed with one arm at a time, or both. If you have never tried this one before, or have any low back sensitivity, try one arm at a time.

2. Start by placing one knee and one hand (from the same side of the body) down onto a bed, bench, the couch or even a stability ball.

3. Your back should be really straight, parallel with the floor. The leg that is not resting on the bench is on the floor, stretched out of the way behind you. The free hand is holding a dumbbell, with the arm stretched down toward the floor. 
Note: Use a dumbbell which is relatively light the first time you do this. You can try it later with heavier weights once you learn proper form.

4. Bring the elbow up as high as it can go but keep it close to your body. It should be able go higher than your back. Throughout the entire exercise the elbow will remain fixed in the position.

5. With the forearm only, bend back from the elbow as far as range of motion will allow, until the arm is straight out behind you. 
Do 10 reps, 3 times total, repeat 3 times per week to see results.

Two Arm Triceps Kickback.

For two arms, start with both feet together and bend your knees slightly. Bend forward from the hips until your back is parallel to the floor. With a dumbbell in both hands, raise both elbows up and behind, higher then the level of your back. At the same time, bend the forearm back until both arms are straight out behind you.

What is wrong with the triceps kickback?

Unlike other triceps exercises such as: dips, skull crushers, push downs and overhead extensions, you will be really fighting a resistance to move the weight. With the triceps kickback the most beneficial part of the exercise is at the very end of the movement, when the arm straightens.

At this point squeezing the triceps is how the exercise activates the muscle fibers. Even better, squeeze the muscle, and try to raise the whole arm just a little higher.

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