8 Best Dumbbell Tricep Exercises For Bigger Arms

Mahrukh Lodhi

Men with dangling sleeves? That’s not a very pleasant trait in men!

Men are supposed to be strong, with incredible physiques and robust triceps ripping out those shirt sleeves.

While many men train their small triceps, they must focus on building up the entire tricep muscle with dedicated workouts.

And I am here with the ultimate dumbbell tricep workouts so you can build robust muscular arms. 

It may be challenging if you’re looking to bulk up your arms, but with commitment and perseverance, you’ve got this! This fantastic dumbbell tricep workout plan can assist you on your journey.  

Tricep Muscle Anatomy 

When training muscles, especially the complicated ones, it’s always best to understand the basic anatomy first. Once you can visualize the muscle and how it works, you will be better able to work around that group of muscles and enjoy maximum benefits.

Here’s a little anatomy class to understand your triceps.

At the back of your arm, there is a group of thick muscles, particularly in your upper arm area shaped like a horseshoe that is called the Tricep Brachii.

Tricep brachii is a Latin term for three-headed muscles of the arm. These three-headed muscles are the lateral head, the long head, and the medial head. (marked in the image). The lateral and medial heads emerge from the humerus bone on top of the arm, while the long head originates from the scapula.

While all three muscles are combined and crossed into the elbow joint, where they help extend the elbow, they also have some separate crucial roles to perform.

The Lateral head is at the outer side of the arm and is responsible for the extension of the elbow. It works harder when a force is applied to extend the elbow joint, for example, when performing pushups, bench presses, tricep dips, etc.

The Medial head, located under the lateral head and originates from the humerus, also extends the elbow joint, contributing to the overall tricep power. 

The Long head is the longest of all heads, hence the name. It runs along the back of the upper arm and is responsible for stabilizing the shoulder joint along with the extension of the elbow. It is also involved in all the activities that require overhead arm movement, like overhead presses and pull-ups.

Since all the heads take care of various arm movements along with the elbow extension, you need to train them with multiple exercises that hit all the heads so you can build solid and robust triceps. 

Benefits of Building Robust Triceps

Building big arms is not a one-day task; it requires a lot of dedication, consistency, and hard work, and reading these benefits will get your motivation levels soaring through the skies so you can stay steadfast on this journey of building strong triceps.

  1. Promotes Shoulder Stability

When I talk about strong triceps helping in shoulder stability, I am talking specifically about strengthening the long-head muscle in your tricep. This muscle is at the back of your upper arm and is responsible for stabilizing the shoulder. 

Moreover, training the long head muscle prevents your shoulders from slumping or curving, helping improve your body posture and overall body alignment.

  1. Strengthens Elbow Joint

Training your triceps, specifically the back of your upper arm, also means you’re strengthening your elbow joints. Elbow joints are like hinges to a door. These hinges help you extend your elbows and perform exercises like push-ups, pull-ups, etc. 

When you train your triceps, you’re targeting your elbow joints, which helps you perform various tasks without hurting your elbows or making them sore and keeping your elbow joints happy and healthy.

  1. Allows You To Lift Heavier 

When you’re at the gym and see others lifting heavy weights, hitting that last rep with immense power, don’t you wish to be able to lift heavy weights and break your records, too? 

If you train your triceps and build bigger arms, you can quickly hit your max rep. Strong triceps are like the secret weapon that will help you to lift even heavier weights and push through those last reps of bench press and shoulder press effortlessly.

Related Article: How To Do The Rear Delt Fly For Strong and Sculpted Shoulders

Best Dumbbell Tricep Exercises

Now that we are all caught up on tricep anatomy, its functions, and how you can benefit from strengthening them, here are a few workouts that can take your tricep power to the next level. 

  1. Close-Grip Dumbbell Bench Press

  • Select your desired weights and lie down on a bench facing the ceiling, with feet planted firmly on the ground
  • Join the dumbbells together, and raise your hands straight upwards, aligning the wrists and elbows
  • Slowly lower down the dumbbells, keeping them joined together till your weights reach your chest
  • Repeat for the desired number of reps
  1. Dumbbell Floor Press

  • Lie down on the floor with your feet flat on the floor and knees over your ankles.
  • Hold the weights above your chest, keeping your elbows and wrists aligned
  • Slowly lower down the dumbbells and graze the floors lightly with your elbows
  • Maintaining the tension in your chest and arms, lift the weight over your chest again
  • Repeat the exercise for the desired number of reps and sets.
  1. Dumbbell Deficit Push Up

  • Select the desired number of weights and place them on the floor
  • Get into a plank position with your hands on the weights
  • Align your neck, spine, and glutes in one straight position
  • Start lowering down your body till your chest touches the floor
  • Maintain the tension in your arms and push back up 
  • Repeat the exercise for the desired number of reps 
  1. Dumbbell Skullcrusher

  • Select light weights and lie down on a flat gym bench 
  • Secure the dumbbells with a steady, neutral grip, with palms facing each other 
  • Bring back your shoulders, engage your abs, and hold the weights to your ear level
  • Keeping the upper arm fixed in one place, lift the weights straight up over your head
  • Slowly bring down the dumbbells till your elbows form a 90-degree angle
  • Maintain the tension and stretch in your triceps, and lift the weights back over your head
  • Repeat the exercise in a controlled manner for the desired number of reps and sets 
  1. Dumbbell Overhead Triceps Extension

  • Grab a single dumbbell and hold it from its head
  • Bring the dumbbell behind your head, bend your elbows, and let the weights go as low as you can 
  • Push the weights up and extend your elbows
  • Feel the stretch in your triceps and lower the dumbbell behind your head again
  • Repeat the exercise for the desired number of reps 
  1.  Dumbbell Tate Press

  • Grabbing the desired dumbbells, lie down on a flat gym bench 
  • Engage your core and lift the weights over your head with a pronated grip, pointing your elbows outwards
  • Slowly bring down the weights, maintaining the elbow’s outward position
  • Once the dumbbell touches your chest, feel the tricep stretch and lift the weights back up 
  • Repeat the exercise for the desired number of reps and sets 
  1.  Incline Dumbbell Triceps Kickback

  • Bend down on a gym flat bench and put your right knee and right hand on the edge of the bench 
  • Hold the weight with your left hand, with your palm facing your body, and put your left leg firmly on the ground 
  • Once in the bend-down position, hold your upper arm firmly by your chest
  • Using only your forearm, lift the dumbbell behind you till your left arm’s elbow, wrist, and shoulder are aligned 
  • Slowly bring down your forearm back to the original position 
  • Maintain the upper arm in a fixed position by your chest, repeat the exercise for the desired number of reps and sets 
  1. Dumbbell JM Press

  • Lie down on a flat bench press, holding dumbbells with a pronated grip
  • Engaging your core, bring back the shoulders and lift the dumbbells over your chest
  • Slowly bring down the dumbbells, keeping the elbows pointing outward
  • Once the dumbbells reach your neck, push them back up to the starting position
  • Repeat the exercise for the desired number of reps and sets.

Tips For A Safe Dumbbell Tricep Workout 

The dumbbells are excellent gym gear when it comes to training your muscles. They are a versatile gym gear that can help you train your entire body while allowing you to intensify the exercises as you go along the fitness journey.

Regardless of their features, every training, exercise, and workout requires some safety that must be ensured by the individuals so that they don’t risk any unnecessary injuries. 

Here are some safety tips you need to remember before you start your dumbbell tricep workouts.

  1. Always make sure to perform a good ten-minute warm-up. A proper warm-up session helps you lubricate your joints properly and increase the blood flow in your muscles. The warm-up is a preparation for your body to understand what is coming ahead, and it prevents you from incurring any injuries. 
  1. Just like performing a warm-up is essential to get your muscles working and your blood pumping, a cool-down session is equally important. It helps you return your heartbeat to normal and bring your muscles into resting mode. Also, performing a proper cool down helps you in muscle recovery. 
  1. When it comes to strength training and lifting weights, it is essential to make sure that you progress slowly. You must get your muscles used to a certain amount of weight first. It is always advised by the experts to gradually increase your weights and focus on completing your reps and sets in a controlled manner instead of lifting heavy weights and leaving the reps incomplete.
  1. One of the significant tips for training with dumbbells or any weights is to ensure correct form. Correct forms while training protect you from spraining and straining your muscles. You’ll see more significant and quicker results if you’re performing a workout with light weights, not giving into the momentum, and doing controlled reps and sets.
  1. When it comes to training, it’s important to remember to take enough rest. Overexertion will only lead to injuries instead of quick gains. Consciously take rest days so your muscles can recover from the workouts. Listen to your body, and if you feel discomfort while performing any exercise, stop right there and rest. 
  1. Lastly, staying hydrated is also one of the main points to remember. If you’re not keeping yourself hydrated before, during, or after the workout, chances are you will lose your coordination, feel tired and dizzy, and may be injured.

Frequently Asked Questions 

  1. What dumbbell workout works the triceps?

The triceps combine three different muscles; exercises generally train them all together. Here is a minor breakdown for you. Close grip dumbbell bench press trains your long and lateral heads, dumbbell overhead tricep extension trains your long head, and dumbbell tricep kickback helps train your medial head.

  1. Can I train the triceps every day?

Training a muscle daily is not an excellent way to build big muscles. Overexertion of forces leads to injuries and strained muscles only. Your muscles need rest to recover and grow. 

  1. Are skull crushers good?

Even though the name of the exercise is a little scary, it is one of the best workouts you can do for your triceps. It is an excellent exercise to build shoulder stability, mass, and strength.

  1. How fast do triceps grow?

Your triceps’ growth depends on multiple factors, such as your nutrition, training, experience, etc., but you can expect to grow your triceps about ½ to 1 inch weekly with the proper diet, workout, and rest. 


The tricep brachii are a combination of three muscles: long head, medial head, and lateral head. Training your triceps not only adds to your aesthetics but also promotes shoulder stability, strengthens your elbows, and allows you to lift heavier weights easily. 

Adding dumbbell skull crushers, floor press, tricep kickbacks, overhead tricep extensions, etc., to your dumbbell tricep workout is a great way to build stronger and more robust triceps. 

While training your triceps to grow more giant arms is essential, it is necessary to remember some safety tips to prevent injuries. Precautions like warming up before a workout, cooling down after a workout, keeping yourself hydrated throughout your training sessions, and giving sufficient rest days to your body so your muscles can recover are a few ways to prevent yourself from getting injured. 

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