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The "Work the Angles" Program to Build Bigger, Stronger Arms

You can add size to your biceps and triceps in just four weeks with this varied routine to hit your arms from every direction.

If you think of building muscle as basically just sets and reps and weights, you’re not wrong. But to fully activate every last muscle fiber and stimulate a muscle to grow, you have to make it contract at different lengths. That’s why it’s so important to train with a variety of exercises that work muscles from different joint angles. With this workout you’ll play all the angles to build your arms in just four weeks.

How It Works:

You’ll begin with the one-arm cable biceps pose. While it may look like an exercise for, well, “poseurs,” understand that when the arm is raised to 90 degrees and the elbow is flexed, the biceps are put in their shortest position. When held for up to six seconds, this increases your nervous system’s activation of the biceps, leading to better contractions throughout the rest of the workout.

The next exercise, the cable crossover triceps extension, accomplishes the same thing for the triceps. From there, you’ll work the bi’s and tri’s with moves that train them in their most stretched positions. Changing the length that the muscles must work at changes the tension in them and, ultimately, the amount of muscle fiber that gets worked. And while it’s harder to understand than “three sets of 10,” your arms will get the message: Get bigger!


Perform the workout once per week. Exercises that are paired (marked “A” and “B”) are alternated. So you’ll do one set of A, rest as prescribed, one set of B, rest, and repeat until all sets for the pair are completed.

Click the name of each exercise for a photo guide and detailed instructions on how to do it.


The Workout:

1A) One-Arm Cable Biceps Pose
Sets: 2
Reps: 8–10 (each arm)
Rest: 30 sec.

1B) Cable Crossover Triceps Extension
Sets: 2
Reps: 8–10
Rest: 30 sec.

2A) Preacher Curl
Sets: 6
Reps: 9, 7, 5, 9, 7, 5
Rest: 60 sec.

2B) Incline Dumbbell Skull Crusher
Sets: 6
Reps: 9, 7, 5, 9, 7, 5
Rest: 60 sec.

3A) Cable Triceps Kickback
Sets: 3
Reps: 12
Rest: 10 sec.

3B) Overhead Triceps Extension
Sets: 3
Reps: 8
Rest: 45 sec.

4) Incline Dumbbell Curl
Sets: As few as possible
Reps: 75 total
Rest: 20 sec.


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