When it comes to losing weight, some parts of your body seem to hold on to their stores
of excess fat more stubbornly than others.
For starters, many people seem to struggle with getting rid of the pesky flab that tends
to build up around the arms, as this can be an especially tricky area to slim down.
While some try to rely on “spot reduction” exercises in an effort to target weight loss
in specific parts of their body, the unfortunate truth is that these targeted weight loss exercises
are largely ineffective when it comes to actually reducing fat in those areas.
The good news is that even if spot reduction doesn’t work, there are still plenty of
exercise techniques you can employ in order to trim the fat on your arms as well as start
building and developing lean muscle to replace it.
For this list, let’s start things off easy
with a few exercise techniques everyone knows, and then gradually work our way up to some
slightly more complex maneuvers.
First up, we’re going to go out on a limb and make the assumption that even those of
you with a passive knowledge of fitness probably know what a push up is.
For toning the muscles in your arms, a narrow push up technique is the best way to approach
this form of exercise: simply start in the plank position with your hands under your
shoulders, and then bend your elbows to lower and raise yourself without arching your lower
If this is too much to start, you can always do these push ups on your knees first in order
to make things easier and get into the rhythm of the technique.
2. Arm Slides
Somewhat similar to push ups, arm slides are
another great way to give your arms a workout and require a minimal amount of equipment
in order to perform.
All you need are two “sliders” to safely rest your hands on as you slide them across
the floor, such as a pair of washcloths or even two paper plates.
Start in a kneeling position and slowly slide the plates forward and back along the ground
with your hands.
In addition to working out your arms, this will also help engage your core muscles and
improve your overall balance as well.
3. Dumbbell Bench Press
In addition to push ups, the bench press technique
is another great way to fully engage the muscles in your arms in order to tone up and hopefully
Bench pressing with dumbbells also helps to reduce any imbalances in muscle mass between
your dominant and non dominant arms, as well as engaging the muscles in your chest as well.
As an added benefit, using dumbbells also means you most likely won’t require a spotter,
Just make sure that you select a weight for your dumbbells that you know you can safely
work with, and remember to take things slow and steady, and this exercise should prove
to be safe and effective.
4. Medicine Ball Slams
Feeling like letting out some pent up aggression
after a stressful day?
Maybe repeatedly slamming a medicine ball into the ground is just the therapy you needed.
In addition to being just plain fun, incorporating medicine ball slams into your workout routine
provides you with a full body exercise that will not only give your arms a workout but
also provide you with a little bit of cardiovascular exercise as well.
Just remember to keep your back straight and your feet hip width apart; also, you might
not want to do this one if you live on the upper floors of an apartment building, or
you may start receiving some noise complaints.
5. Resistance Band Bicep Curls
A resistance band is a length of elastic cord
material with a handle on either end.
While it has the capacity to stretch, it offers just enough resistance (hence the name) to
really make you work for it.
To perform bicep curls with one of these bands, step on the middle section of the cord so
that it rests underneath the arch of your foot, and lift each of the two handles from
your hips to your shoulders.
Make sure to keep your back straight and avoid swinging or leaning back when you bring your
6. Supine Barbell Rows
This unusual looking exercise makes use of
TRX straps to strengthen not only your arms but also your lower back as well.
Grabbing one of the TRX handles in each hand, slowly walk backwards with your chest facing
the anchor point until you begin to feel tension in the straps.
Then walk your feet forward until your back is positioned at a 45 degree angle and begin
repeatedly pulling yourself up until your chest meets the straps.
The further apart your feet and hands are from each other during this exercise, the
more challenging (and thus more rewarding) it will be.
7. Battle Ropes
In addition to having what is quite possibly
one of the coolest names on this, battle ropes also help you by providing cardiovascular
exercise, increase your endurance and tone the muscles in your arms all as part of a
single exercise technique.
Grabbing the end of one of these ropes, stand with your feet hip width apart and start making
up and down motions so that the rope begins to form a wave.
From there, try speeding things up to create smaller waves, or slow down and move your
hands a greater distance up and down to create larger ones.
Try to feel things out and experiment with this exercise to see which speed and intensity
you’re most comfortable with.
Hopefully you’ll be walking away from this article with more knowledge on arm toning workouts
with which to “arm” yourself.
But now let’s pass the question off to all of you fitness junkies reading this article:
what are some of your favourite upper body and arm related exercises to implement in
your workout routines?
We’d love to hear some of your input, so be sure to let us know in the comment section
below and help us keep the conversation going.