The 8 BEST tricep exercises for women in a 30-Minute Tricep Workout with dumbbells. From lying triceps extensions to tricep dips, these triceps exercises will make the muscles on the back of your arms pop!
Today we’re specifically focusing on the tricep muscle. The triceps are the three muscles (“tri”) along the back of your upper arm that help you extend your elbow and straighten your arm. They assist with pushing motions, like push ups.
If you thought your triceps were sore after this 30-Minute Chest, Shoulders and Triceps Workout… wait until you try these 8 tricep exercises for women.
This 30-Minute Tricep Workout will make the muscles on the back of your arm pop.
This “burnout style” tricep workout for women combines bodyweight tricep exercises with dumbbell tricep exercises to fully fatigue the triceps (which is how we build tricep muscles).
Biceps tend to steal the show when we talk about ‘showing off our muscles’ in the classic ‘flex’ move but I’m here to tell you that the tricep is JUST as important!
Did you know that our triceps have the capacity to be bigger than our biceps?! The tricep is a three-headed muscle. Whereas, the bicep is a two-headed muscle. Women especially tend to ‘under-work’ the tricep.
Researchers have identified tricep push ups, tricep dips, and tricep kickbacks as some of the exercises that most efficiently fire up the muscle in back of the arm (ACE Fitness). I also personally love lying tricep extensions. This arm workout includes all four of these powerful tricep exercises.
Triceps, like most muscle groups, require repetition. I suggest including triceps exercises in your weekly workout routine 2-3 days a week. Since the triceps are commonly undertrained, they are smaller. Thus, the larger push muscles (like the chest and shoulders) tend to overcompensate or take over during push exercises.
Progressively loading the triceps muscles with these 8 triceps exercises. AKA — adding these triceps exercises to your weekly strength training routine and striving to increase weights every couple weeks or months.
The goal of this tricep workout is to strengthen and tone the back of the arm.
This workout is a great way to measure fitness progress and strength gains. Repeat this workout monthly to see if you can increase weights each time you do it.
Set of medium-to-heavy dumbbells. I suggest between 5-20 lbs. I’m using 10, 12 and 15 lb dumbbells for this tricep workout.
This workout also uses a chair, bench or counter top for the bodyweight tricep exercises.
Follow along with the guided Tricep Workout on YouTube, led by certified personal trainer, Lindsey Bomgren.
Your Workout Looks Like This:
Why We Love Tricep Kickbacks: They are one of the BEST triceps exercises to strengthen and tone the back of the arm.
Trainer Tip: Try and go heavier than you normally would for this single arm exercise.
Typically you see tricep kickbacks as a bilateral exercise (working both arms at the same time). However, performing the tricep kickback as a unilateral exercise (one arm at a time) allows you to focus on one arm at a time; possibly using a heavier weight than you normally would working two arms at the same time.
Why We Love Overhead Tricep Extensions: They target the long head of your triceps and require lots of core engagement.
Trainer Tip: To keep the core engaged think about spreading the floor apart underneath you, keeping a nice neutral spine, and keeping your rib cage pulled in (not flaring out). It’s also important to keep your arms next to the ears as you lower the weight behind your head.
Why We Love Tricep Push Ups: They really target ALL 3 heads of the tricep muscle. Push ups are a fast and effective way to build strong triceps (and abs too).
Trainer Tip: Modify this challenging upper body exercise by adding an incline. As you can see below, I’m doing tricep pushups on a chair to make them slightly easier while still getting full range of motion on my push ups.
Another modification would be to perform a close grip bench press.
Modification: Drop down to your knees or check out this post for more ways to modify push ups.
Why We Love Skull Crushers: Lying tricep extensions (skull crushers) take any potential weight bearing stress off your back so you can really focus on working the back of your arms.
Trainer Tip: Lower the dumbbells down towards your temples with each rep.
Why We Love The Side Push Up: It’s a challenging and effective bodyweight tricep exercise. While the triceps are the focus of this exercise your abs, core and shoulders are also engaged.
Trainer Tip: Think about pressing away from the ground with the back of your arm (your tricep).
Why We Love Tricep Dips: The best way to ‘burnout’ the lateral and medial heads of your triceps!
I think tricep dips are the BEST bodyweight tricep exercise to build lean tricep muscles. Tricep dips are also a great way to measure progress.
Trainer Tip: The farther your feet are away from the chair, the harder this exercise will be. To modify, walk your feet in so your legs are at a 90-degree bend as you dip.
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