The bicep is an iconic representation of muscular strength and pure power, but it isn't the most powerful part of the human body. It is however, the strongest muscle in your arm, and you utilize its strength for everything from everyday movement to lifting heavy weight. Increasing the power behind your bicep muscles is accomplished by exercising all of the muscles surrounding them.
The Muscles of the Upper Arms
The biceps are attached at the elbow joint and shoulder and have two "heads" or components. You can differentiate between the long and short heads in individuals with large biceps defined by a separation of the muscle down the center. In the upper arm, the biceps are accompanied by the triceps, brachialis and coracobrachialis muscles as well as the deltoid muscle that attaches your shoulder to the upper arm. The biceps don't attach to the pectoral muscles of your chest; however, exercises for the chest often engage the muscles of the upper arms.
The Biceps Muscles
Despite the fact that bodybuilders use the size of their biceps as a measure of their strength, the strength of your arms is determined by the development of all of the muscles. In order to increase the strength and size of your biceps, Bodybuilding.com says that you need to incorporate exercises that strengthen the wrist. This doesn't appear to make sense; however, they explain that the biceps are also integral in the rotation of your palms. The biceps work with the brachialis and brachioradialis muscles to lift your lower arm and rotate the hand.
The Role of Your Bicep
The bicep isn't just a point of interest for bodybuilders; it plays a role in nearly every movement that involves lifting, pulling and pushing. The position of the wrist, according to Bodybuilding.com, can determine the portion of the bicep and associated muscles that respond. Holding your wrist bent backward when lifting a barbell and raising it from your waist to parallel to the floor shifts the weight to stress the forearm. Similarly, maintaining your hands shoulder-width apart when performing barbell curls targets the biceps in a different way than if you adjust your hands to be an inch closer or further apart.
Building a Stronger Bicep
You don't necessarily need gym equipment to increase the size and strength of your biceps. Some of the most effective biceps exercises, according to Bodybuilding.com, include chinups and pushups. For more targeted bicep toning, dumbbells, resistance bands, water bottles or canned food can add more demands to your biceps exercises. Working with any of these and performing curls, while adjusting the position of your hand, can isolate each portion of the bicep muscle.
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