Focus on the negative to get positive results….
Wait, say what?!
Don’t all the gurus tell us we are a product of our thoughts? Aren’t we supposed to think positive thoughts? Visualize success?
Yes! But we aren’t talking about mindset! We are talking about your technique at the gym and specifically your technique on arm day!
We are also going to tell you to do something else that may make you scratch your head.
We are giving you permission to use bad form….
Wait, say what?
Don’t you always say that good form is crucial for gains and to prevent injury?
Aren’t we supposed to always use good form? Even if that means lowering the weight?
Yes! But what would typically be “bad form” isn’t actually bad for the exercise we are showing you today.
Maybe it would be better for us to say that we want you to “cheat” a little bit the next time you train your biceps.
It’s not often we would advise you to do this.
But with the exercise we are showing you today, a little bit of momentum will be required to lift the weight needed to create the kind of muscle “damage” we are going for!
What is the exercise? It’s not anything fancy. It’s actually just a bicep curl using an EZ curl bar.
The technique and tempo you will be using make this bicep curl different from what you are probably used to.
When it comes to the bicep curl — you’ve probably always been told to curl up without bouncing or using any momentum and then use control as you come back down.
That is correct. Unless you are only trying to focus on the negative eccentric (lowering) portion of the curl — which is what we are doing today.
If you have spent any time on our YouTube Channel, then you’ve seen us incorporate this negative bicep curl variation into many of our workouts.
But we’ve never talked about why “negatives” are so effective or filmed a video totally dedicated to them.
This exercise is hands down our favorite bicep exercise of all time if bigger biceps are the goal! So we figured it deserves it’s own article and video!
Speaking of building your arms…
We’re sure you already know this, but you can’t get big arms with this one exercise. Negatives need to be added to whatever current arm program you are using.
If you don’t have an arm program you love or want to try something new, we have an entire program designed around building bigger arms.
It’s called BIG ARMS and has helped many people (including Vince) experience significant arm growth.
You can CLICK HERE to learn more! It is an instant download so you could even get started today if you want to!
Whether you use your own program or give our BIG ARMS program a try, make sure you consistently include this negative curl variation in your routine, and we know you will see a difference in your bicep gains!
You can read over this written description of how to perform them. Still, most people are visual learners, so we suggest you watch THIS VIDEO for step-by-step guidance!
EZ CURL BAR NEGATIVES
Equipment Needed: EZ Curl Bar (pre-loaded or regular w/ plates)
Weight: Aim for at least 25% more than you can typically curl. We want you to go as heavy as possible, based on how much weight you can LOWER slowly with proper form.
The weight you pick will feel like it’s too much at first because your biceps are weaker during the concentric (raising) portion.
But remember, we are only worried about the negative (lowering) part of this exercise. Your biceps are stronger on the way down, so pick a weight that is challenging for the eccentric part of the lift.
Sets & Reps: 3-4 sets of 6-8 reps
When to perform it: Pending your current arm program, we suggest you throw this exercise in either at the very beginning or as your final exercise. Both have benefits. It really boils down to personal preference!
Technique Notes: Again, this weight is going to feel way too heavy on the way “up” because your biceps aren’t as strong in the concentric (raising) portion of the lift. This is why we say IT IS OKAY TO CHEAT and use a little momentum on the way up since we ONLY really care about the negative (lowering) portion for this exercise.
How To: Grab an easy curl bar and add a little more weight than you would typically be able to curl. Hold the bar with your palms facing up and about shoulder-width apart. Instead of going super strict with form on the way up (which is key with regular curls), we want you to use a little bit of momentum to get the weight up.
Essentially, you will bend forward just a little bit and “throw” hips forward so you can create a little momentum to curl up.
Once you “cheat up”, you will lock yourself into position. Keep elbows tucked in and then lower the bar AS SLOW AS POSSIBLE. By slow, we mean at least five full seconds!!
Do not rest at the bottom (not even for a second) and immediately “cheat” the weight back up.
Keep doing this until failure. If you have picked the correct weight, this should be for about 6-8 reps!
Aim for 3-4 sets!
If you are struggling with building bigger biceps and doing the same old curls over and over and not getting you anywhere, add this one into your program, and we know you will see a difference!