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  1. #1
    Registered User STDsInUrHardDrive's Avatar
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    Isolation of the lateral tricep head

    I'm curious on some specific exercises to isolate the lateral head of the tricep muscle. That's the one most visible from a side perspective. I feel having this one(at least on my body) more developed than the other heads would be incredibly beneficial to shape both relaxed and especially flexed.
    I understood while I was boxing, that this particular head is a bit more responsible when the arm is extending while the hand is rotating one way or another, fact or fiction?
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  2. #2
    The Alchemist badreligion's Avatar
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    anything close grip

    close grip bench

    skullcrushers

    rope or V bar pushdowns

    dumbell kickbacks
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    Registered User STDsInUrHardDrive's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by badreligion View Post
    anything close grip

    close grip bench

    skullcrushers

    rope or V bar pushdowns

    dumbell kickbacks
    I'll check into the close grip bench. Skull crushes and pushdowns seem to isolate the long head(one that's under the arm, pressing against the lat) more than anything else
    Any other ideas?
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  4. #4
    The Alchemist badreligion's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by xxoddxx View Post
    I'll check into the close grip bench. Skull crushes and pushdowns seem to isolate the long head(one that's under the arm, pressing against the lat) more than anything else
    Any other ideas?
    trust me they dont ,

    anything close grip works the inner part , anything wide grip works the outer part

    there is an exception how ever tho to anything over head with triceps

    that would target more of the long and medial head which is the back of the arm

    but if you rlookin to target that part of the tricep on the very outer part of the tricesp

    those exersices i named are the ticket
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  5. #5
    musclar smurfette Sunshineslynn's Avatar
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    you can also try reverse grip tricep pulldowns instead of pushdowns but dont use much weight I usually do a regular set of pushdowns then lower the weight 50% reverse the grip (palms up) you will notice a difference. Also close grip bench, dips straight up and down, etc.
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  6. #6
    I Am Teh Lolrus stealth_swimmer's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by xxoddxx View Post
    I'll check into the close grip bench. Skull crushes and pushdowns seem to isolate the long head(one that's under the arm, pressing against the lat) more than anything else
    Any other ideas?
    yeah, but that's cus that head is the lateral head. You're talking about the medial head. That's the one involved more with presses, so you'll want to do close grip bench and dips for that, Dips stimulate the triceps pretty evenly overall if you ask me, but close grip bench is almost entirely the head that you're talkin about.
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    Originally Posted by badreligion View Post
    anything close grip works the inner part , anything wide grip works the outer part
    But, like I said, I'm trying to isolate the lateral head, the one that lies right next to the brachialis, on the side of the arm opposite of the torso.
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  8. #8
    www.productionsound.net YouCrazyDiamond's Avatar
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    Why don't you just work on building up your triceps as a set. Don't worry about one head - just get the whole thing hyoooooge.
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    Registered User oldmanmarley's Avatar
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    I've noticed in my workouts that the outer part of my tricep gets more of a pump and feels more fatigued when I do tricep exercises with a reverse grip. The exercises I do it with are high incline skullcrushers (french press?), cable pushdowns, and overhead dumbell extensions. However, I can't say with confidence that my triceps would look any different if I never trained this way - what do I have to compare it to?
    Last edited by oldmanmarley; 02-01-2007 at 09:12 PM.
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    Registered User STDsInUrHardDrive's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by YouCrazyDiamond View Post
    Why don't you just work on building up your triceps as a set. Don't worry about one head - just get the whole thing hyoooooge.
    Because obviously, smartone, I already stated I don't want to do it that way. Bodybuilding is about art, and this is a detail I'd rather have more noticed. Why do people go all gooey over the teardrop(vastus medius) on the quads even though it's just an overall part of the thigh muscles?
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  11. #11
    Grip -n- Rip! SteveCNY's Avatar
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    try FIXED BAR EXTENSIONS

    or Adam's Extensions
    http://www.abcbodybuilding.com/exerc...extensions.htm

    Exercise 3: Old School extensions with a dumbbell- 3 sets

    In all humbleness, these have to be the most DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness) tricep exercise I know of. After a few brutal sets of these, it hurts to just straighten my arms out for several days!

    This is another exercise that will leave your arms throbbing in pain with a few forced reps.

    They place immense stabilization strain and stretch on the tricep simultaneously!

    But as a result they add a peak on your triceps that only this exercise can yield!

    We’re going to go a little higher in the rep range here. I want you to work between 10 and 12 reps. Really concentrate on the stretch at the bottom and the contraction at the top. You’ll love this pump!
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  12. #12
    Squats traps to grass Defiant1's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by xxoddxx View Post
    I'm curious on some specific exercises to isolate the lateral head of the tricep muscle. That's the one most visible from a side perspective. I feel having this one(at least on my body) more developed than the other heads would be incredibly beneficial to shape both relaxed and especially flexed.
    I understood while I was boxing, that this particular head is a bit more responsible when the arm is extending while the hand is rotating one way or another, fact or fiction?
    Close Grip Bench.

    Cross face lying dumbbell extensions.

    Power pushdowns (flare elbows-push handle in straight line close to body)

    Rope pushdowns

    Behind neck rope extensions (my favorite).
    Last edited by Defiant1; 02-02-2007 at 06:17 AM.
    CSCS, ACSM cPT.
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    lateral head

    Hey bro,

    Oldmanmarley is on the right path. Just his order of exercises is a bit off. Start wit push downs with a bar (close grip if you want to adjust hand positions, but not neccesary), follow that with BB skull crushers on a flat bench, followed by DB seated overhead extensions. I am trying to build the same area of my triceps at the moment. 3-4 sets, 12 reps, keep the weight moving, no pausing at all!

    All the best!
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    Originally Posted by SteveCNY View Post
    try FIXED BAR EXTENSIONS

    They place immense stabilization strain and stretch on the tricep simultaneously!

    But as a result they add a peak on your triceps that only this exercise can yield!
    Yeah... and they kill the rotator cuff-_-
    I'll give it a shot anyways.
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    Registered User STDsInUrHardDrive's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Doggzilla View Post
    Hey bro,

    Oldmanmarley is on the right path. Just his order of exercises is a bit off. Start wit push downs with a bar (close grip if you want to adjust hand positions, but not neccesary), follow that with BB skull crushers on a flat bench, followed by DB seated overhead extensions. I am trying to build the same area of my triceps at the moment. 3-4 sets, 12 reps, keep the weight moving, no pausing at all!

    All the best!
    Sounds insane, but I remember once(before I did upper body exercises at all), I was working on my grip by squeezing those squeezy v things. After doing that all night, the lateral head on my triceps were sore for a week.
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  16. #16
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    Originally Posted by stealth_swimmer View Post
    yeah, but that's cus that head is the lateral head. You're talking about the medial head. That's the one involved more with presses, so you'll want to do close grip bench and dips for that, Dips stimulate the triceps pretty evenly overall if you ask me, but close grip bench is almost entirely the head that you're talkin about.
    He is talking about the lateral head.

    Lateral refers to the 'outside'. Medial refers to the 'inside' or close to the midline.

    The medial head is the smallest one, and is on the inside of the arm..

    The long head is the one on the middle that extends up close to the lat.

    To target the long head, it is best done when your shoulder is flexed, rather than extended (Elbows raised) This is because the long head is connected to the scapula as well as the humerus.

    Good exercises for that are overhead extensions, french press, and close grip.

    As for the lateral head, the one most visible from the side, basic cable push downs are good. Actually, just about any good tricep exercise is good for the lateral head.


    The long head is the one that is harder to hit, because it is biarticulate.
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    *semantics stickler* The proper wording would be 'emphasize' or 'target'. Isolation is only possible with a muscle group, and even then it means the isolated movement, not contraction, since other muscle groups will ALWAYS contract to keep you stable.
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    Triceps Anatomy & Biomechanics

    ANATOMY

    The long head of the triceps originates in the glenoid cavity of the shoulder joint. The long head is on the inside of the arm, pressing up against the latissimus dorsi.

    The lateral head is on the outside of the arm. It originates from the outer surface of the humerus near the shoulder.

    Some people confusingly call the medial head the “inner head,” because it lies deeper than the other two heads. It's more accurate to call the long head the "inner head," because it's more prominent on the inner side of the arm. "Medial" is an anatomical word meaning: “related to, situated in, or extending to the middle.” This refers to the fact that the medial head is sandwiched between the lateral and long heads. The medial head is most prominent toward the elbow, but it actually originates toward the shoulder, on the rear of the arm, under the lateral and long heads.

    All three heads of the triceps join to a single tendon that inserts into the elbow at the olecranon process of the ulna bone.

    All three heads of the triceps cross the elbow joint, but only the long head crosses the shoulder joint. This is why overhead triceps extensions place more stretch on the long head, and are therefore more taxing on the long head. See below.

    BIOMECHANICS

    The impact of shoulder flexion/extension:
    As a few other people have stated, triceps movements with the shoulders flexed (elbows above head) tend to target the long head. Triceps movements with the shoulders extended (elbows behind body) will in general target the lateral head. If you are finding this not to be the case with a certain exercise, it is likely that other factors are coming into play, such as those below.

    Shoulder rotation:
    In complex pressing movements like a benchpress, you typically emphasize the triceps by keeping the elbows close to the body. With the elbows in, this can be done either with an overhand grip (hands 6 inches to shoulder-width apart), or a wide underhand grip. In general, if you turn your elbows out, the emphasis will shift to your pecs. However, with pushups or dumbbell pressing movements at or below shoulder height, you can emphasize all three heads of the triceps by varying your shoulder rotation. For instance, if you do pushups with your elbows way out, i.e. with your fingers pointing toward each other, this will emphasize the medial head of the triceps by placing a little stretch on it. (Be careful as you experiment, as this movement can strain your shoulders.) Fingers forward is more neutral, and fingers pointed out will put more emphasis on the lateral head. As I think someone else mentioned, on triceps isolation exercises, you can also vary the width of your grip to emphasize either the long head or the lateral head.

    Grip (supination/pronation):
    Underhand (i.e. palms up, i.e. supinated) grips tend to emphasize the lateral head, while overhand (i.e. palms down, i.e. pronated) grips tend to emphasize the long head.

    As I said in the anatomical section, all three heads of the triceps meet at a single tendon at the elbow. Therefore, while different movements are more taxing on different heads, experts disagree on how much of a difference it makes in the end. The size of your different triceps heads may have more to do with genetics than exercise form, but all you can do is experiment. I'm not a hardcore, experienced bodybuilder, so I haven't developed a strong opinion of my own yet. However, since some experts that I respect believe you can effectively target the different heads of the triceps, to me it makes sense to experiment and find out for myself.

    If you want more information, I recommend checking out Eric Cressey's website, particularly his articles on "Bogus Biomechanics and Asinine Anatomy." He's an extremely educated guy, a high ranking powerlifter, and he coaches pro athletes. I also like the "perfect pushup technique" video on the website "bodyweightcoach." It demonstrates variations in shoulder rotation. Last but not least, Dr. Nick Evans has written a pretty respectable book on this subject, titled Bodybuilding Anatomy. It's available pretty much everywhere.
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  19. #19
    Registered User mustangwrestlin's Avatar
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    dude it seems like you dont have a ton of mass yet. not that im saying i do either, but why would you not want to focus on your overall physique and your overall tricep development, rather than focus on just one part of it? Chances are as your body develops more your body will more naturally develop the outside of your tricep. Ive had a lot of progress from weighted dips skullcrushers, pushdowns, etc. CGBP also hits my tris nicely i think unless you have some special circumstances, it would be better to just get really good at these bread and butter exercises first? I mean if they add a lot of mass great if not then you at least you got crazy strong.
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  20. #20
    Registered User k9pit's Avatar
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    I do overhead extensions (cable or db) for the long head

    skullcrushers with a straight bar to focus on the medial head

    and V-bar style pushdowns (Gironda Power Pushdowns) for the lateral head - http://www.davedraper.com/pmwiki/pmw...PowerPushdowns.

    They work well.
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  21. #21
    Banned Tyciol's Avatar
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    I doubt you can isolate any head of the tricep. You can emphasize the long head or the 2 shorter heads (medial lateral) depending on the shoulder angle.

    In spite of claims about it, haven't seen evidence that you can emphasize medial over the lateral or vice versa though. Prove me wrong

    For example Trogdor, please show these claims regarding supination/pronation changing which is working harder. Where do they originate?
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    I'm sure the OP with the trollish user name is still very interested in this topic 5 years later.
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  23. #23
    Pushin' it Real Good smokinal's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by SquatTilYouDrop View Post
    I'm sure the OP with the trollish user name is still very interested in this topic 5 years later.
    my thoughts
    The powerlifter visions a certain weight he would like to lift, he uses his body to achieve it and he gets big as a side effect.
    The bodybuilder visions a certain physique he would like to aquire, he uses weights to achieve it and he gets stronger as a side effect.
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  24. #24
    The BACKMAN DJAuto's Avatar
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    Bodybuilding is 60% training and 50% diet. Yes that adds up to 110%, because that's what you should be giving it. Change the inside, and the physique will follow.
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  25. #25
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    Exercises

    Triceps Dips (weighted)
    Bench Dips
    Close Grip Benchpress
    Skullcrusher (Laying Triceps Extension)
    Overhead Triceps Extension (Frenchpress)
    Bentover Cable Triceps Extension
    Cable Triceps Pushdowns
    Triceps Kickbacks

    i dont like the closegrip for the medial head. the long head helps me push more weight on those type exercises. I like the rule of thumb that really anything you are pushing away from your belly button can give you more of the long head like overhead db presses or close grip and the towards the belly button like dips or kickbacks to an extent or the big rope pulldowns
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  26. #26
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    I vote for Close Grip Bench Press....
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    Originally Posted by SquatTilYouDrop View Post
    I'm sure the OP with the trollish user name is still very interested in this topic 5 years later.
    Threads don't exist solely to satisfy OPs. If they talk on a subject of interest enough for people to bump it either to convey their mutual curiosity, or for people to offer their thoughts, it's valuable.
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  28. #28
    Doesn't Eat Wheaties MWheatley's Avatar
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    There is no hope in this thread...
    Workout Journal
    http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=163269821
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  29. #29
    Training like John98 sippiboy1987's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Tyciol View Post
    Threads don't exist solely to satisfy OPs. If they talk on a subject of interest enough for people to bump it either to convey their mutual curiosity, or for people to offer their thoughts, it's valuable.
    This.. People need to learn that they can google what they want to know and I'm sure someone has covered the topic in another thread. This would get rid of all the excessive threads that ask the same thing I.e. ( how can I build bigger arms, how can I bench more, how to lose fat lifting weights, etc).

    No need for me to make a new thread asking which muscles isolate the lateral head..
    100% rep back if you post in same thread. (no reds and no grey reps)

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  30. #30
    Registered User corebound's Avatar
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    Great discussion. I was doing a little research on the subject for symmetry. My right lateral head is smaller than my left. Not necessarily weaker but noticeably different in size/shape. It's probably heavily impacted by genetics but I was curious how to perhaps put more emphasis on that particular head than the others in an attempt to build my right lateral out more.
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