If your forearms are being neglected in favour of your biceps, it’s time to give them some attention.

Perform these exercises to build strong, thick forearms that will boost your grip and capacity in exercises like the deadlift , and add impressive bulk onto skinny arms.

As your forearm strength grows you will also be able to squeeze weights harder, engage more muscle and use more force. This will help increase your reps on pulling exercises like the barbell row and pushing movements like the bench press.   


Find standard pull ups too easy? Grasping a towel instead of the bar will seriously up the grip challenge, making the whole move more intense.

It’s simple to do: just grab a towel, sling it over the bar and hold onto either end of the towel with each hand. Hang from the towel then pull yourself up until your chin reaches your hands. Too tricky? Try just hanging from the towel for as long as possible.


These are an essential part of an effective forearm workout.

Hold a pair of dumbbells with palms facing your sides. Keep your upper arms by your sides and curl the weights up to your shoulder, keeping palms facing each other all the time. Pause, then lower to starting position. Do 8-10 reps for 4 sets.


These are just like standard barbell curls, only with your palms facing down to the floor instead of up. Be warned – you won’t be able to lift as much as you do normally!

Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, slightly bent knees, abs tight and shoulders relaxed. Hold a barbell with hands 8 inches apart, and curl up keeping your elbows against your sides. Pause at the top, then slowly lower down. Do 3 sets of 8-10 reps.


Properly executed, these can give you massive forearms as well as building your back strength. Make sure you keep your back straight and chest out.

Find the heaviest dumbbells you can lift and stand tall with them. Start walking with your arms by your sides for 20 seconds. Rest for a minute, and repeat 2 more times.


Using an EZ bar will help make this intense move more comfortable and puts less stress on the wrists and forearms.

Sit at a preacher bench, adjusting the height so your armpits touch the top of the bench. Hold an EZ-curl bar at shoulder-width with palms facing down and arms slightly bent. Curl the bar, ensuring the triceps remain flat against the bench. Lower slowly back down. Do 2 sets of 8 reps. 

The Author

Kath Webb

Kath is a contributing writer for PayasUgym. Football, running, weight training, yoga and walking are her forte, along with cooking tasty, nutritious food - with a regular batch of cake chucked in.


Michael A.
31 October 2017

Michael A.

I have never intentionally worked my triceps so this is good to remind me to balance out the bicep training.

Sean S.
25 October 2017

Sean S.

Farmers walk sounds dead simple and you wonder how it can get you toned, but it's actually one of the oldest exercises that's not actually meant to be an exercise, and has worked for hundreds of years for farmers!

Simon J.
24 October 2017

Simon J.

useful stuff - I've been searching for this kind of advice as it seems to be all about the biceps. Uneven training is not only unhealthy, it produces a rather odd look.

Jim R.
21 October 2017

Jim R.

the farmers walk - basically just carrying stuff but really tough. Good idea!

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