16. Fixed Arm Torso Rotation

16

Muscles highlighted: Biceps, pectoralis major

Instruction:

Stand next to a wall or a door, and raise the arm laterally until shoulder height, with the palm of the hand curved so that it touches the frame of a door or the corner of a wall. The elbow needs to stay extended. Relaxing the arm and the pectoral area, turn around the torso in the opposed direction of the extended arm.

Commentary:

This exercise is done similarly to the one for the pectoral region, but now the elbow must stay extended in order to get a good stretch of the biceps. You must know how to feel the pressure in the muscle that is being stretched, the biceps brachii, or else, the pressure might be somewhere else, and you might end up performing the exercise incorrectly. In that case, you should adjust the posture and start the stretch again until you achieve the desired goal.

17. Arm Hyperextension With Support

17

Muscles highlighted: Biceps brachii, brachioradialis

Instruction:

Stand up, with your back toward a flat support of about shoulder-height, with the elbow extended and the arm internally turned around (the thumb pointing inward), and rest the back of the hand on the support and set your trunk lower until you are able to feel the stretch around the biceps.

Commentary:

Once more, it is not sufficient to simply extend the elbow so that you get a stretch of the biceps, you also have to move the shoulder to divide its points of insertion. You need to do this exercise slowly and to handle a good stretch of the biceps. Actually, from among the exercises intended to stretch the biceps individually (without assistance) this is one of the most efficient. Because of the arm position and the movement that we perform, the anterior part of the shoulder is also stretched.

18. Hanging From a Bar With Supinated Grip

18

Muscles highlighted: Biceps brachii, brachioradialis

Instruction:

Make sure that your arms are externally rotated and your forearms are supinated (the palm of the hand is faced backward), and hang suspended from a horizontal bar. This stretch lasts for about few seconds that you should use to relax your body and then you should return to the ground in order to “release” the muscles.

Commentary:

This exercise is just like the initial position for performing “chin-ups” for the back and biceps. Moreover, it is exactly this pair of muscle groups, the back muscles and the elbow flexors, that are being stretched while this exercise is performed. You should just know how to relax the body and not to keep a constant pressure in the arms, which would prevent them from being stretched, and use only the forearms and hands to support your body weight.

On the other hand, you can attempt to hold on to a lower bar and keep the feet on the ground, but then gradually take all of the body weight off the feet until your entire bodyweight is hanging, even if your feet may still be touching the ground.

19. Preacher Bench Passive Arm Extension

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Muscles highlighted: Biceps brachii, brachioradialis

Instruction:

Get on the preacher bench, and hold the bar with a supinated grip (palms facing upward). Then, lean your elbows against the pads and let your arms stretch until they reach the point of utmost extension.

When finishing this exercise, do not simply bring back the weight up by bending the elbows, but instead, get up from the bench completely, so that you are more relaxed and it is less compromising for the joints.

Commentary:

Do not forget that this is a stretching exercise and you should not pack the bar with too much weight. The stretching should be unhurried and restricted, because if not, the joint could be damaged at the bottom of the movement; perhaps not the biceps itself, but the olecranon, the humeral artery, the joint capsule, or certain ligaments.

If the regular bar (~ 8 to 10 kg) is too heavy for you, look for a lighter bar, but never use dumbbells because it would be much more difficult to maintain full supination of the forearms, which is necessary for stretching the biceps.

20. Overhead Arm Hyperextension

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Muscles highlighted: Triceps brachii

Instruction:

You can either stand up or sit down in front of a mirror, and you should bend the elbow to the end and lift the arm by bending the shoulder, while using the opposite hand to press the elbow backward.

Commentary:

You might notice a tendency to rest the helping arm on the head as a kind of knob, which could compel the cervical vertebrae. If done correctly, this stretch is very beneficial, but still, care must be taken not to adopt poor postures with the neck.

You must bend your elbow maximally (hence the hyperflexion in the name), yet it is not rare to see people who, as they press on farther back, the elbow joint is increasingly relaxed and extended, taking away from the stretching of the triceps. This is where you may need to ask for a help from a training partner – all they have to do is to make sure that the elbow remains totally bent and press gently on it toward the back. It is recommended that you get the assistance while the partner sits on a bench.

Continues on page 5…

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16. Fixed Arm Torso Rotation Muscles highlighted: Biceps, pectoralis major Instruction: Stand next to a wall or a door, and raise the arm laterally until shoulder height, with the palm of the hand curved so that it touches the frame of a door or the corner of a wall. The elbow needs to...
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