Best Triceps Exercises

Uploaded by ACEfitness on 15.07.2011

Fabio Comana, Exercise Physiologist: Given our busy schedules and time constraints,
it's important that we maximize the benefits of our workouts.
With that in mind, ACE recently sponsored some research to determine
which exercises most effectively targeted the triceps, or the muscles of the back or the upper arm.
Women especially strive for those sexy, strong arms.
But it's important to develop these muscles, not just for aesthetics, but also for functional use.
Researchers at the University of Wisconsin La Crosse studied eight traditional tricep exercises
using EMG analysis to determine which exercises were most effective at targeting those muscles.
The three exercises that scored the best results were: the triangle pushup, dips, and the tricep kickbacks.
Now, unlike the traditional pushup, where the hands are placed shoulder-width apart,
in the triangle pushup, this involves placing the thumbs and the forefingers together to form a triangle position.
Then the hands are placed directly under the chest.
Just like a traditional pushup, you will assume a full plank position. Try and keep the shoulders nice and square.
And maintain that nice, stiff torso throughout the exercise.
For a modification, you can always follow the bent-knee position pushup.
The dips in this study were performed using a low bench. But any sturdy chair or ledge can be used.
Begin by placing your hands on either side of your hips
so that your palms are resting on the bench and your fingers are hanging over the edge.
With your feet together, slowly walk yourself out, extending your legs out in front of you.
As you begin the exercise and lower yourself to the floor,
try to ensure throughout the exercise that your elbows do not elevate above shoulder height
and try and maintain an angle tighter than 90 degrees at the elbows.
In performing the tricep kickback exercise, proper form is important, not only for targeting the muscle effectively,
but also for safety reasons to prevent additional stresses upon the spine.
Some key coaching cues here: always maintain a neutral spine and hip position throughout the exercise,
whether using the bench or supporting your own body.
And make sure the movement is coming out of the elbow where we can target the triceps effectively,
and not through the shoulder.
The shoulder joint should remain fixed, whereas the elbow should be going through flexion extension.
The results of this ACE-sponsored research clearly demonstrate that you can achieve strong, toned triceps
with little or no equipment.
In fact, you can do most of these exercises any time, any place.
Just remember to have a purpose behind your training.
If you're training for endurance, two to three sets of 12 to 15 reps will suffice.
If you're training for muscle size and for strengthening,
you want to think about doing up to four sets; somewhere in the 6- to 12-rep range.
For more information on this research study, as well as other great exercise ideas, please visit
We'll see you next time.