Easy Arm Workouts
Dumbbell biceps curls develop your biceps at the front of your arms.
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Women who incorporate weight training into their exercise regimen see increases in muscular strength, endurance and tone, just as men do. Lifting is of utmost importance to women, however, because of its positive effect on bone density, which naturally decreases in women with age. If you’re just starting out, there’s no reason to fear, as weight training is easily modifiable depending on your strength and training levels. The major muscles in your arms include the biceps and triceps, which control movement around your elbows. A complete arm workout should also target your deltoids, which are the major muscles in your shoulders and are responsible for lifting up your arms.
Women just starting out should begin by lifting two days per week. You want to provide enough of a stimulus to invoke developments in strength and tone, but also allow your muscles enough time to adapt to the new stress. Schedule your workouts throughout the week so you have two to three days off in between each one. After you’ve been consistently lifting for four to six weeks, increase your workout frequency to three days per week. Before each workout, take five to 10 minutes to warm up your muscles with some light cardio activity.
Sets and Reps
Georgia State University recommends that you start out by doing one set of each exercise, with each set consisting of eight to 12 repetitions. After a couple weeks, increase workout volume to two sets of each exercise. Use light weights so you can focus on learning technique and feeling comfortable with the weights as you begin. Once you feel coordinated, increase the weight you’re using so it’s difficult to complete 12 repetitions.
Related Reading: Complete Workout for Bicep & Tricep Exercises
To target your shoulders, do shoulder presses and lateral raises. Both exercises are done with a pair of dumbbells while standing. For the shoulder press, hold the weights at your shoulders with your elbows lined up underneath your wrists and your palms facing ahead. Push both dumbbells over your head until your elbows are straight and the weights are lined up over your ears. Lower the weights to where they started. Because you’re extending your elbows during the shoulder press, you’re also working your triceps. For the lateral raise, hold the weights down by your sides with your palms facing inward. Keep your elbows straight as you lift your arms up and out to your sides until they’re level with your shoulders and then lower them back to your legs.
Your biceps, which are at the front of your arms, are responsible for bending your elbows. To develop your biceps, complete dumbbell biceps curls. Hold a dumbbell in each hand and rest your arms down by your sides with your palms facing forward. Keep your elbows held in against your torso as you bend your elbows to lift the dumbbells up to your shoulders. Control the weights back down until your arms are straight again.
Your triceps are at the back of your arms and are responsible for extending, or straightening, your elbows. To hit your triceps, perform dumbbell overhead triceps extensions. Stand and hold a single dumbbell with both hands over your head with your arms extended. Bend your elbows to lower the dumbbell behind your head and then extend your arms again to return the weight back to where it started.