Lying Tricep Extension

The lying tricep extension is sometimes called a skullcrusher.  Since it isolates the tricep, lying tricep extensions are some of the best exercises to build strength and enlarge the tricep muscle.  Lying tricep extensions also benefit your shoulders, forearms and chest.  You can also using lying tricep extensions to tone your muscles.  Lying tricep extensions can be done using a curl or cable bar, dumbbells or a pulley.  As you add heavier weights, you will increase muscle growth.  It is recommended you use a spotter due the heavy weights used for this exercise.

This first exercise uses an EZ curl bar.  The beginning position is to lie on a bench holding the bar using an underhand grip with your hands close together.  With an upward motion, lift the bar towards the ceiling until your arms are fully extended.  Slowly lower the bar until it is barely touching your head.  This is one of the exercises to use heavier weights and you should use a spotter.  At the end of each rep, flex the tricep muscle for one or two seconds and also flex in between each set.

Some of the lying tricep extensions can be done using dumbbells.  You start by lying on the bench with each hand holding a dumbbell.  Use the overhand grip and make sure you are holding the dumbbell securely.  The arms are fully extended over your head.  Your feet should be flat on the ground for added support.  Bend your elbows to lower both dumbbells until they are next to the side of your head.  The dumbbells should be almost touching your forehead.  Then, using your tricep muscles lift the dumbbells back to the beginning position.  Repeat the movements until you complete your set.  Also, make sure your elbows stay in as you go through the exercise.

Lying tricep extensions can be performed with a variety of different apparatuses keeping these exercises more interesting.  This next exercise uses a cable machine and develops the inner head of your triceps muscle. The bench should be about 1 feet from the exercise machine.  Lying on your back, grip the bar with your hands about 10 inches apart (increasing or decreasing the distance based on your size).  Without moving your upper arms and shoulders, pull the weight downward until it is right behind your head.  Resist the temptation for your elbows to move outside.  Push the weight back up to the starting position as you exhale.

Another variation is to switch angle positions after each set of repetitions while using an EZ curl bar.  You can begin with 12 15 reps lowering the bar to your forehead.  Then, move your arms to a 50 degree angle and lower the bar moves toward the top of your head.  Be careful not to lower the bar too far and take the tension off your triceps.  For another change, you can bring the bar directly over your chest.  You should adjust the weights and the number of reps based on your physical condition.

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