Forearms and wrists are often the weak links when it comes to lifting heavy weights and taking bodybuilding to the next level. Therefore, it’s important to add wrist exercises into your weight training routine in order to strengthen and eliminate any weak points.
Bodybuilders often think that their wrists and forearms get stronger from upper arm workouts. Although this is true to a certain extent, tricep and bicep exercises only strengthen the forearms and wrists a certain amount, leaving them weaker than if you targeted them directly. Wrist exercises allow you to strengthen your lower arm muscles, increase your overall body mass and lift greater amounts of weight. In many sports the wrists and forearms are key elements in the actions taken to perform at top level. From swinging a bat strongly to drive a ball over the wall to swinging a golf club for further driving distance, the wrists are what add that extra oomph to an athlete’s game.
Wrist and Forearm Exercises
Following are several good exercises which you can perform to increase forearm and wrist strength:
Barbell Wrist Curls –
You can also use dumbbells to perform wrist curls. However, using a barbell keeps both wrists in a unified movement with one another better allowing you to develop them equally. Either kneel on the floor and use a bench for arm support or, from a sitting position, rest your arms on your legs so that only your wrists overhang. Hold the barbell so that your palms are facing up and allow your wrists to move down as much as possible without experiencing discomfort. Raise the bar back up as far as you can, again without feeling discomfort. Repeat for 12 repetitions and complete 3 sets.
Barbell Reverse Curls –
From one of the two positions mentioned above, hold the barbell with an overhand grip so that your palms are facing down. Allow your wrists to move down as far as they can go and raise the bar back up as far as you can without feeling discomfort. Repeat for 12 repetitions and complete 3 sets.
Wrist Rotations –
For this wrist exercise, you should use dumbbells. From a seated position, rest your forearms on your legs as mentioned above and hold the dumbbells so that your palms are facing up (underhanded grip). Slowly rotate the dumbbells downward until your palms are facing the floor and then slowly rotate them back up to the starting position. Repeat for 12 repetitions and complete 3 sets.
Weighted Wrist Rolls –
This is a good exercise for both forearm and wrist strengthening. Obtain a short, cut piece of a broomstick or a short pulley machine bar, a length of heavy string that reaches from your chest to the floor and a desired free weight. Tie one end of the string to the bar and the other around the weight through the bar hole. From a standing position, hold the bar with your arms straight out in front of you (the weight should just be touching, or slight off, the floor). Slowly twist the bar in one direction until the weight has been rolled up to it and then slowly reverse the roll until the weight has returned to the floor. Repeat 2-3 times.