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10 Best Exercises to Get Massive Forearms


10 Best Exercises to Get Massive Forearms
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One day, while scrolling through social media, Mike stumbled upon a post that caught his attention. It was about how to increase the size of the forearms. Intrigued, he started reading more about it and discovered that genetics played only a tiny role in determining forearm size. The real key was exercise.

Mike was excited by this revelation and decided to give it a try. He started incorporating forearm exercises into his workout routine, but it wasn't easy. The muscles in his forearms were relatively small, and he had to be careful not to overwork them or risk injury.

Forearms are an important part of the arm and are involved in many daily activities, such as gripping a steering wheel, lifting weights, or even opening a door.

In addition, strong forearms can help improve your performance in other exercises, such as pull-ups and chin-ups. Lastly, many people think that bigger forearms look more aesthetically pleasing.

However, achieving bigger forearms may be challenging at times. One of the challenges in achieving bigger forearms is that many forearm exercises also work the muscles in the upper arms. As a result, you may find it difficult to increase the size of your forearms without increasing the size of your upper arms.

Another challenge is that the forearm muscles are small compared to other muscles in the body, such as the chest or legs. This means that they have a relatively small capacity for growth. However, with these 10 best exercises for forearms, you can gain massive forearms within a few weeks.

Top 10 Best Forearm Exercises

If you're looking to build up your forearms and strengthen them, plenty of exercises can help you build monster arms. Here are ten of the best exercises for getting massive forearms.

1. Palms-Up Wrist Curls

1. Palms-up Wrist Curls

The exercise that targets the muscles on the top of your forearm is called the palm-up wrist curl. It is a variation of the standard wrist curl, which focuses on the muscles on the underside of your forearm. The palm-up wrist curl is an excellent exercise to add to your forearm training routine, as it helps to improve grip strength and wrist stability.

How to Do It:

  • Sit on a bench and hold a barbell in your hands with your palms facing up.
  • Rest your forearms on your knees and lower the bar towards the floor as far as possible.
  • Curl your wrist upward, pause, and then slowly lower.
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2. Palms-Down Wrist Curls

2.Plams-Down Wrist Curls

The palm-down wrist curl is an effective exercise for building strength and muscle in the muscles on top of your forearm. You can improve your grip strength, wrist stability, and overall arm strength by targeting these muscles.

As you perform the exercise, you will feel the muscles on the top of your forearm working hard to lift the weight, which indicates that you are targeting the right muscles.

How to Do It:

  • Sit on a flat bench, feet shoulder-width apart, with a barbell resting across your lap.
  • Hold the barbell, palms down, with hands shoulder-width apart.
  • Lean forward so your forearms are resting against your thighs and your wrists are on your knees.
  • Inhaling, use only your wrists to lower the barbell.
  • Exhaling, use only your wrists to raise the barbell.
  • Then, repeat the set.

3. Farmer's Carry

3. Farmer's Carry

The farmer's carry is a fantastic exercise for building strength and endurance in the entire body, particularly in the grip and core. The farmer's carry is a popular exercise in strongman competitions and is a foundational exercise in kettlebell training.

One of the primary benefits of the farmer's carry is its ability to improve grip strength. As you carry the heavy kettlebells for a certain distance, your grip will be challenged, which will help to improve your overall grip strength.

How to Do It:

  • Begin by standing straight with your weights to the side of your body. Shoulders should be over the feet.
  • Squat down with your hands to the side, chest up, and shoulders back and grab the weights tightly.
  • Stand straight up, set your eyes forward, and take small steps. Make sure you don't lose momentum while moving forward.
  • Perform the walk, place your equipment down, take a break, and then repeat.

4. Resistance Band Pull-Up

4. Resistance Band Pull-Up

Resistance band pull-up's are a form of physical exercise that builds strength and boosts your overall health. It involves using resistance bands and a pull up bar to perform this exercise routine.

This may seem daunting at first, but once you try it, you'll see how easy it is to get started. This could be the key to achieving your goals for those who think they cannot do any pull-ups.

How to Do It:

  • Hang your resistance band over the pull-up bar.
  • Grab each side with your hands.
  • Inhale and pull yourself up.
  • Then, exhale and lower yourself until your arms are fully extended.

5. Trap Bar Carry

5. Trap Bar Carry

The trap bar carry is a challenging and great exercise that targets the muscles in your back and enhances your grip strength.

This exercise is similar to the farmer's carry, but instead of using kettlebells or dumbbells, you use a trap bar, which allows you to lift heavier weights and place more load on your muscles.

The Trap Bar Carry works every muscle in your upper body, particularly your back muscles. As you lift the heavy weight and walk with the trap bar, your upper body is engaged, including your traps, lats, rhomboids, and erector spinae. This makes the exercise an excellent choice for building your upper body's overall strength and muscle mass.

How to Do It:

  • Position yourself inside a trap bar with your feet hip-width apart and your arms by your side.
  • Lean forward and take a neutral hold on the handles.
  • Stand tall and extend your hips and knees to get into a position.
  • Hold the trap bar and walk a certain distance or duration while keeping an active shoulder position.
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6. Plate Pinches

6. Plate Pinches

The plate pinch is a grip-strengthening exercise involving a weight plate between your fingers and thumb. The muscles worked during the exercise depend on the type of grip used. If you use a pronated (overhand) grip, the muscles in your forearm and wrist extensors will be engaged.

These muscles are responsible for extending your wrist and fingers and are essential for gripping and holding onto objects.

If you use a supinated (underhand) grip, the muscles in your forearm and wrist flexors will be engaged. These muscles are critical for flexing your wrist and fingers, and they are essential for gripping and pulling objects toward you.

Either way, your shoulders and upper arms will also be involved in the movement, as they are responsible for stabilizing the weight and helping you maintain your grip.

How to Do It:

  • Hold a pair of weight plates in a pinching grip.
  • Now lift the weight plates off the ground.
  • Hold them for as long as possible, then carefully set them down.

7. Reverse Cable Curl

7. Reverse Cable Curl

The reverse cable curl is a variation of the traditional bicep curl exercise that targets the back of the arms, particularly the brachialis and brachioradialis muscles. This workout uses a cable machine, which provides constant tension throughout the movement and allows for a greater range of motion compared to traditional dumbbell or barbell curls.

In addition to targeting the biceps, the reverse cable curl also works other muscles in the arms, such as the forearms, elbows, and shoulders. The movement of the exercise involves the entire arm, from the elbow to the shoulder, making it a great full-body workout that also engages the core muscles.

How to Do It:

  • Connect a straight or EZ bar attachment to a cable machine.
  • Grab the attachment with the palms facing down.
  • Step back from the machine with your arms in front of your body.
  • Flex your elbow toward your shoulder.
  • Squeeze your biceps, then slowly drop the weight until your elbow is completely locked out.
  • Repeat as necessary.

8. Standing Dumbbell Shoulder Press

The Standing Dumbbell Shoulder Press exercise is a compound movement that targets multiple muscle groups.

The primary muscles targeted by the standing dumbbell shoulder press are the deltoids, the muscles responsible for raising and lowering the arms. The rotator cuff muscles, small muscles in the shoulder joint, are also activated during the exercise to help stabilize the shoulder and prevent injury.

How to Do It:

  • Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent, holding weights at shoulder height.
  • Engage your core and press the weights overhead, extending arms without locking elbows.
  • Slowly lower weights back to starting position and repeat for desired reps.
  • Repeat as tolerated.

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9. Pull Up Bar Hang

9. Pull up bar hang

The pull-up bar hang is a simple yet effective exercise that involves hanging from a pull-up bar for an extended period. This exercise is often used as a warm-up or cool-down exercise for other upper-body workouts, but it can also be used as a standalone exercise to build upper-body strength.

As the name suggests, the pull-up bar hang primarily targets the back muscles, including the lats, traps, and rhomboids. The exercise is also excellent for building grip strength, essential for performing other pulling exercises like pull-ups and rows.

How to Do It:

  • To reach your pull-up bar, use a bench or step. To prevent injury, try not to jump and grab the bar.
  • Take hold of the bar in an overhand grip, with your hands facing away from you.
  • Try to maintain a shoulder-width distance between your arms.
  • Take your feet off the bench now or get on the bar and hang there.
  • Do not bend your arms; keep them straight and at a comfortable angle.

10. Hammer Curl

10. Hammer Curl

The hammer curl is a compound exercise. It's the best exercise for building mass in your biceps. Compound exercises recruit multiple muscles and involve more muscle fibers.

These exercises are more effective in building muscles than isolation exercises that target specific muscles and individual muscle groups. The biceps are very active in hammer curls, but your forearms also contract hard to hold the dumbbells in place as you curl.

How to Do It:

  • Hold a pair of dumbbells at arm's length by your sides with your hands facing inward.
  • Curl the dumbbells as close to your shoulders as possible while keeping your elbows tucked, your upper arms fixed, and your palms facing inward.
  • After pausing, gradually return the weights to their starting position.

Why Should I Train My Forearm Muscles

Following are the benefits of exercising your forearm muscles to improve your ability to grip and hold onto objects. It can mainly give advantages to athletes or individuals who perform manual labor or activities that require a strong grip.

Increased Forearm and Grip Strength

Sometimes we focus on building leg and chest strength but forget about the essential muscle group; the forearms. Training forearms is crucial as it can strengthen the muscles crossing your hands, wrists, and elbows.

Furthermore, it increases your grip strength. Improved grip strength will help you perform daily activities, and you can lift heavier weights during athletic activities more efficiently than ever.

Improved Coordination and Balance

The exercises mentioned above help increase forearm coordination while performing activities such as lifting weights or even simple daily tasks. The stronger your forearm is, the easier it will be to maintain balance while working with other muscle groups.

With increased coordination and balance, you can lift heavy weights without dropping them or being unable to hold them longer.

Better Muscle Growth

When working out, we often focus on the major muscle groups like the chest, back, and legs. However, the forearm muscles are as important in achieving overall muscle growth.

By exercising the forearm muscles, you can improve your grip strength and increase the size and definition of your arms by lifting heavier weights.

Reduced Risk of Repetitive Strain Injuries

Repetitive strain injuries, also known as cumulative trauma disorders, are a type of injury that occurs from repetitive movements, awkward postures, or forceful exertions. These injuries are common among individuals who perform repetitive tasks, such as typing, using hand tools, or assembly line work.

Over time, repetitive strain injuries can cause pain, discomfort, and reduced range of motion in affected areas and may even require surgery to correct.


1. What are the best forearm exercises for beginners?

Palm up or palm down wrist curl, and wrist extension are some of the best exercises for beginners. You can perform an entire forearm workout around just these three exercises.

2. How does forearm training work?

Forearm training is effortless. All you need is to follow three forearm exercises, one for each movement our forearms help us with elbow flexion, wrist flexion, and wrist extension.

3. What forearm exercise is most effective?

While the reverse wrist curl using an EZ bar can be an effective exercise for the forearm extensor muscles, it's important to note that there isn't necessarily a single "most effective" forearm exercise. Different exercises can target different parts of the forearm and provide unique benefits.

The Verdict

Strong and well-developed forearms are crucial for achieving overall fitness and athletic performance. Forearm exercises help increase grip strength and improve coordination, balance, and muscle growth.

Incorporating exercises such as wrist curls, farmer's carries, trap bar carries, plate pinches, reverse cable curls, pull-up bar hangs, and other forearm-targeting movements can provide a well-rounded approach to forearm training.

It's important to note that the most effective forearm exercise may vary from person to person, depending on individual goals and body types. Experimenting with different exercises and finding what works best for you is key to developing strong and healthy forearms.

Article Sources

  • Yasuda, Y., & Miyamura, M. (1983). Cross transfer effects of muscular training on blood flow in the ipsilateral and contralateral forearms. European Journal of Applied Physiology and Occupational Physiology, 51(3), 321-329.
  • Weiss, T., Kreitinger, J., Wilde, H., Wiora, C., Steege, M., Dalleck, L., & Janot, J. (2010). Effect of Functional Resistance Training on Muscular Fitness Outcomes in Young Adults. Journal of Exercise Science & Fitness, 8(2), 113-122.

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