The barbell lying triceps extension is one of the most common triceps workouts that you will come across.
It is a form of isolation exercise that majors in building muscle and strength in the three triceps heads – the lateral head, the long head and the medial head.
The barbell lying triceps extension brings about a deep stretch in the triceps muscle. This helps in the activation of more fibers for muscle hypertrophy.
Now before we look at the proper way of doing the barbell lying triceps extension, do a proper warm-up in order to avoid elbow discomfort and pain or even muscle cramps.
It is for this reason that some people prefer to start off with non-extension exercises before they embark on this move. Here are the steps to follow in doing the barbell lying triceps extension.
- Have your barbell lying on the furthest edge of a horizontal bench.
- Lie flat on the bench with your head just next to the barbell and your feet spread on either side of the bench.
- At shoulder-width, stretch your arms to pick the barbell right behind your head with your palms facing up.
- Hold the barbell straight above your chest. This should be your starting position.
- Keep shoulders and elbows as firm as possible, inhale and lower the barbell slowly towards your forehead.
- As you exhale jerk back the barbell to its initial position, which is above your chest but make sure that it is your triceps that does the heavy lifting. That is a rep. You can have as many repetitions as you may wish.
WHAT MUSCLES DO BARBEL LYING TRICEPS WORK?
The main muscle worked by this move is the triceps brachii, which is located in the back part of your upper arm.
Triceps brachii, as the name suggests consists of three branches or heads that is – lateral head, the long head, and medial head.
These three branches of the triceps pull out from the elbow.
The lateral head stretches from the rare part of the humerus and extends across the elbow joint while the long head invents from the scapula, and stretches across the shoulder and elbow joints
During the overhead triceps extension, the triceps muscles contracts thereby stretching the elbow joint to create resistance with the weight and gravity of the barbell.
During triceps extensions the triceps contract, extending the elbow joint against the resistance of the weight and gravity.
It is this triceps extension that creates the primary motion that brings about the isolation of the triceps muscle, this means that the focus of the barbell lying triceps workout is the triceps muscle alone.
BARBEL LYING TRICEPS EXTENSION BENEFITS
This workout helps to build large triceps muscles which give the upper arm a better definition and also the general look of the upper arm.
Strong muscles helps in athletic activities such as swimming, tennis and basketball.
The lying triceps extension workout can be very effective in fixing triceps imbalances and it also plays a great part in injury rehabilitation.
Since the triceps muscles are involved in the everyday activities that involve push and pull movements, strengthening them by performing the triceps lying extension workout will make it easier in performing such routines such pushing a shopping a loaded shopping cart or lifting a luggage.
It is highly effective in building strength and muscles concurrently since it isolates only the triceps muscles and another advantage that lying triceps extension brings about is that it does not amount pressure on your wrists.
ALTERNATIVES TO BARBEL LYING TRICEPS EXTENSION
There are multiple ways of doing the barbell lying triceps extension workout.
It is imperative to have knowledge of how to do some of them so as to break the monotony of doing a single routine exercise.
Also, so that you don’t miss out on the other benefits that come with these other variations.
Here are some of the common variations of the barbell lying triceps extension that you can apply as complementary exercises along with the standard triceps extension workout.
LYING TRICEPS EXTENSIONS ON THE FLOOR
In case you cannot access a bench on which you can lie, use what is readily available, that is the floor. Simply lie on the floor and get started.
This should work your triceps well just that your comfort and stability may be compromised but you can also try to solve that by placing a soft mat on the floor.
Be careful not to crush your skull with the barbell due to stability issues.
CABLE LYING TRICEPS EXTENSION
This is another variation that has the same benefits as the standard triceps extension.
The cable lying extension helps decrease the attachment behind your head thereby relieving the pressure on your elbows. This gives your triceps a longer stretch.
Much as it requires a lot of equipment, it is a comfortable and friendly workout with less stabilization compared to using weights.
INCLINE LYING TRICEPS EXTENSIONS
If you have an extendable bench, you can have it inclined and perform the triceps extension in that position. This position helps to target different angles of the triceps compared to when lying flat.
MISTAKES TO AVOID WHEN DOING BARBEL LYING TRICEPS EXTENSION
Here are some of the common errors that are usually made when doing the barbell lying triceps extension.
Hold the barbell firmly so that you avoid the weight from slipping from your hand and crushing your face or your forehead.
You should especially consider this when holding the barbell in a reverse grip position and if you have a weak grip, consider the ways that you can increase your grip strength
The recommended length of holding the barbell is at shoulder-width, this helps to reduce the stress on the joints of your elbows.
LIFTING THE WEIGHT TOO FAST
The lying triceps extension workout should be done at a moderate pace so as to keep the weight under control and also for maximum gain.