Tricep Extension for the Horseshoe
You want the horseshoe. The bulging mass off the back side of your upper arms. The trick of walking through a gym without even flexing and still holding a sweet horseshoe that will make equestrian riders jealous. Is there a fast way to get the shoe rolling? What can you do to get the most amount of growth out of the back side of the upper arm?
Working Toward the Shoe
There are three heads to the tricep. This is very important to understand when attacking the growth of the muscle as a whole. Remembering back to our positions of flexion, we can see that the tricep responds very well to various angles of exercise to hit each specific head. Some movements hit the long head better than the medial head and vice versa.
As seen in the image above, the lateral head consists primarily of fast twitch fibers while the medial head is more slow twitch. The LONG head is typically both slow and fast twitch fibers. Taking the fiber make up can help us understand the rep ranges and loads needed to stimulate the most amount of growth.
The next step is to understand what angles hit what specific head. Overhead movements are usually going to stimulate the long head while the lateral head will feel hit by exercises like pushdowns. Movements like the miracle gro and telle extension lead to incredible gains because shoulder extension is achieved on the eccentric AND extension of the elbow is achieved on the concentric!
High rep pushdowns and banded kickbacks will be responsible for smoking the slow twitch medial head. But what are the best movements that will almost entirely isolate the triceps?
I have spent hours upon hours playing around with various exercises for tricep stimulation. It is important to realize that the triceps play a huge role in sports performance and their functionality is also paramount in fitness training as well. Are these the best ALL-TIME tricep movements. I wouldn’t go that far, but they will pack serious mass on the horseshoe!
1. Seated EZ Bar Extension
- This movement smashes the long head, it gets very stretched and takes on quite a bit of force throughout the movement.
- This exercise carries over very well to overhead sports and anyone who struggles with shoulder pressing as well.
- Be aware of the possible fatigue and stress it can place on the elbow joint.
2. Seated Tricep Extension AWAY From Torso
- This movement is THE BEST exercise for targeting the medial head. It responds very well to higher reps and long time under tension.
- The exercise can be used for extension in sports like wrestling where athletes have to extend the elbow while still under tremendous fatigue.
- Try not to put too much torso lean into the movement.
3. DB Seated BANDED Tricep Extension
- Another great movement that targets the long and lateral head on the finish of the movement. The band will stimulate massive recruitment at the top of the exercise.
- This also carries over well to sports like football, throwing and Olympic weightlifting.
- Try to use a controlled eccentric portion of this exercise because the band will be pulling the dumbbell rapidly back to the starting position.
Triset for Monster Trize
Try out this tri-set to stimulate the monstrous growth for the triceps. Hit this routine twice a week at the end of an upper body day or right after some big back squats and your horseshoe will appear in no time!
1A) DB Seated Banded Tricep Extension with 4 sec Eccentric 5 x 7
1B) Lean Away Seated Tricep Extension 5 x 25
1C) Seated EZ Curl Extension 5 x 12-15 lighter
This pump will be incredible and you will feel the metabolic stress filling the muscle fiber, getting it to grow into a massive shoe!
It’s important to hit the tricep from multiple angles and different tempos because of the fiber make up. As the different angles are hit, the tricep will adapt to the differing points of extension and recruitment. Over time, this training can result in impressive results and massive growth in size and strength!
Dane Miller is the owner and founder of Garage Strength Sports Performance. He works with a select handful of clients on building comprehensive programs for fitness and nutrition. Several times a year he leads a workshop for coaches, trainers, and fitness enthusiasts.