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4 reasons why you should work out your triceps

Been training your biceps to get big arms? You should probably consider training your triceps instead!

Triceps are the most important muscle in the arms to train. (Photo credit: istolethetv/Flickr)


1. Triceps make up 2/3 of your arms

Triceps are the largest muscle group in your arms, running from the elbow to the shoulder. With a main role to straighten the elbow, triceps are made of three bundles of muscles - which means they have more potential to grow.


The most prominent are the lateral and long heads which run from the shoulder to the elbow. The last head, known as the brachialis or medial head, is under the lateral and long heads. It is usually only visible when looking at the arms from the side. Therefore training these three bundles of muscles will make your arms appear much larger and toned.




2. To help with complex weight training exercises

The triceps are involved in many complex weight training exercises that target different muscle groups (e.g. Military presses, half presses, bench presses, dips). Despite having a strong chest or back, weak triceps can cause imbalanced muscle growth and risk injury, With stronger triceps, you can perform and progress better.


A simple anatomy of the triceps

3. Shoulder stability and functional movements

The triceps are often overlooked when it comes to shoulder stability. In fact, it is attached to the shoulder blades and is involved in rotation and adduction of the arm. Having strong triceps can help stabilize the shoulder joint at the top of the humerus (bone of the upper arm).


The triceps also fixate the elbow joint when the forearm and hand are used for fine movements like writing. More specifically, the three bundles of muscles have different functions - the long head for force generation, the lateral for movements requiring high-intensity force and the medial for more precise, low-force movements.




4. Isolation & Convenience

This is much less of a reason but more of a fun fact: Triceps muscles can be worked out individually from any other muscle group on your body. Specifically, the tricep extension targets only the triceps without any assistance from other muscle groups. This can help strengthen the tricep muscles and even out any unbalances between sides. The tricep extension exercise can also be done with different types of resistance and in various positions, making it a convenient exercise to incorporate into your workout routine.



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