Workouts

25 Bicep Workouts at Home

Training the biceps is the most popular workout done around the world. That’s hardly surprising. When someone asks to see your muscles, they expect you to flex your biceps. They are also the most prominent muscles when you’re walking around in a tank top or t-shirt. But how can you get in a great biceps workout when you don’t have access to a gym?

In this article, I’ll lay out 20 unique awesome biceps exercises, which I will present as 25 different workouts you can do at home. Each biceps workout will combine 3 exercises. These biceps exercises will make use of your own body weight, along with resistance bands, dumbbells, and a pull up bar.

1. Band Biceps Curls

  • Stand with feet shoulder width apart and a resistance banded looped under both feet. Hold the other end of the band in both hands with arms by your sides.
  • Maintaining a neutral body starting position, curl your arms up to your shoulders to perform a biceps curl. Return to the start position. 

2. Banded Arm Hammer Curl

  • Stand with a resistance band looped under your left foot. Hold the other end of the band in your left hand in a neutral grip (knuckles facing forward).
  • Curl the band up and across your chest to full bicep contraction. Lower to the start position.

3. Standing Alternate Arm Dumbbell Curl

  • Stand with  a pair of dumbbells at your sides, palms facing in to your thighs.
  • Keeping your elbows in at your side, turn the left palm to the front and curl the weight up to your left shoulder, squeezing the bicep in the contracted position.
  • Reverse the movement, simultaneously curling with the left hand.

4. Incline Bench Alternate Arm Dumbbell Curl

  • Set an adjustable bench to a 30 degree incline angle.
  • Sit on the bench with a pair of dumbbells in your hands at your sides in an underhand grip.
  • Curl the right arm up to full contraction.
  • Lower and repeat with the left arm.

5. Dumbbell Arm Hammer Curl

  • Stand with a pair of dumbbells held at your sides in a neutral grip with your palms facing your thighs.
  • Curl the dumbbells up to full contraction. Lower to the start position. The movement should resemble hammering a nail.

6. Dumbbell Concentration Curl

  • Sit on a bench with a dumbbell in your right hand, with you arm hanging between your legs in an underhand grip. Rest your left hand on your knee.
  • Secure your right arms against your inner thigh and then curl the weight up to full contraction. Squeeze tight then lower and repeat.

7. Close Grip Chin Up

  • Hang from a pull up bar with an underhand grip and your hands about six inches apart.
  • Your starting position is a dead hang. From there pull yourself up until your chin touches the bar.
  • Tightly squeeze the biceps and the slowly lower yourself. Stop just short of lockout and move directly into the next rep.

8. Close Grip Chin Hold

  • Hang from a pull up bar with your palms facing toward you and your hands about six inches apart.
  • Your starting position is a dead hang. From there pull yourself up until your chin touches the bar.
  • Hold this top position, squeezing the biceps tightly, for 30 seconds.
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9. Decline Curl with Dumbbells

  • Set an adjustable bench to a 45-degree angle incline. Grab two dumbbells and lie face down on the bench so that your arms are hanging at your sides. Your feet should be planted firmly on the floor.
  • Curl both arms up to shoulder level, squeezing both biceps at the top of the movement. Lower and repeat.

10. Towel Hammer Iso Hold

  • Stand with one end of a rolled up towel under your right foot. Grab the other end of the towel in your right hand.
  • Curl the towel up to its full length and squeeze as tightly as you can. Hold this position for 30 seconds.

11. Ledge Curls

  • Stand in front of a ledge such as a bench top or staircase railing that is at about waist height.
  • Place your hands under the ledge with your palms up and push up against it.
  • Push up with all of your might with the intention of pull the ledge from its position. You won’t be able to, but trying to do so will give you a great bicep burn.
  • Lean slightly forward for five seconds.
  • Lean back for another five seconds. 

12. Isometric Curls

  • Stand with feet shoulder width apart. In the starting position, place your left hand over your right wrist.
  • Begin curling your right arm up to your shoulder level as you resist the movement with your left hand.
  • When you have managed to curl your arm up half way toward your shoulder, hold the isometric contraction for 30 seconds.

13. Wide Grip Band Curl

  • Stand with feet shoulder width apart and a resistance banded looped under both feet. Hold the other end of the band in both hands with arms by your sides and your hands slightly wider than shoulder width apart.
  • Maintaining a neutral body position, curl your arms up to your shoulders to perform a biceps curl. Return to the start position. 

14. Close Grip Band Curl

  • Stand with feet hip width apart and a resistance banded looped under both feet. Hold the other end of the band in both hands with arms by your sides and your hands close together.
  • Maintaining a neutral body position, curl your arms up to your shoulders to perform a biceps curl. Return to the start position. 

15. Band Iso Curl

  • Stand with a thick loop band under your right foot only, with that leg slightly forward. Grab the ends of the band in both hands at full arm extension with your hands wide apart.
  • Curl the band up to fully contract the biceps. Lower and repeat.

16. Band Single Arm Bicep Preacher Curl

  • Attach a loop band to a secure upright at waist level.
  • Stand a few feet away from the upright, facing it and hold the band in your right hand with a palms up grip.
  • Bend your knees slightly and then curl the band up to your shoulder. Lower and repeat.

17. Cable Band Curl

  • Attach a resistance band to the bottom of a door or other secure upright. Hold the other end of the band in your right hand in a palms up grip and stand about two feet in front of the upright, facing away from it.
  • Curl the band up to shoulder level and then reverse to return to the start position.

18. Underhand Bicep Curl

https://youtube.com/watch?v=k-sDq2h0-RE
  • Attach a loop band to the bottom of a door and stand a few feet in front of the machine, facing it. Grab the other ends of the band in both hands, palms down and thumbs close together.
  • With your arms at your sides, curl your arms up to your shoulders. Lower and repeat.
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19. Band Concentration Curl

  • Sit on a bench with your knees together and a resistance band looped under your feet. Hold the ends of the band in your hands , with arms extended at mid thigh level, palms facing inward. This is your starting position.
  • Curl your arms up to your shoulders. Lower and repeat.

20. Door Curls

  • Stand side-on in an internal doorway. In the starting position, grab the side ledge of the doorway with your feet right up to the doorway.
  • Extend your arms back to full extension.
  • Pull back to the original position, squeezing the biceps tightly in the contracted position.

The Workouts

Be sure to use proper form in order to isolate the biceps on every exercise. Choose a resistance that will challenge you in the last 4 reps. Your goal should be to progressively increase the resistance from workout to workout. 

Workout #1

  • Banded Bicep Curl – 3 x 15 reps
  • Banded Hammer curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Chin Hold – 3 x 30 seconds

Workout #2

  • Standing Alternate Curl – 3 x 15 reps
  • Dumbbell Hammer Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Chin Hold – 3 x 30 seconds

Workout #3

  • Close Grip Chin Up – 3 x 30 second hold
  • Standing Alternate Dumbbell Curl – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Chin Hold – 3 x 30 seconds

Workout #4

  • Decline Dumbbell Curl – 3 x 15 reps
  • Standing Alternate Dumbbell Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Chin Hold – 3 x 30 seconds

Workout #5

  • Towel Hammer Iso Hold – 3 x 15 reps
  • Ledge Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Chin Hold – 3 x 30 seconds

Workout #6

  • Isometric Curls – 3 x 30 second hold
  • Standing Alternate Dumbbell Curl – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Chin Up – 3 x 10-12 seconds

Training Tips: Consider the close grip chin up and chin up hold as finishing off exercises designed to force the maximum amount of muscle growth from your biceps. Try to get as much time under tension on these exercises as possible. If you can extend beyond 30 seconds on the chin hold, go for it!

Workout #7

  • Cable Band Curl – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Bicep Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Chin Hold – 3 x 30 seconds

Workout #8

  • Standing Alternate Dumbbell Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Cable Band Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Chin Hold – 3 x 30 seconds

Workout #9

  • Dumbbell Hammer Curl – 3 x 10-12 reps
  •  Band Iso Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Chin Up – 3 x 10-12 seconds

Workout #10

  • Door Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Towel Hammer Iso Hold – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Chin Hold – 3 x 30 seconds

Workout #11

  • Cable Band Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Ledge Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Chin Up – 3 x AMRAP (as many reps as possible)

Workout #12

  • Standing Alternate Dumbbell Curls – 3 x 8-12 reps
  •  Dumbbell Concentration Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Chin Up – 3 x 10-12 seconds

Workout #13

  • Wide Grip Band Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Band Curl – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Chin Hold – 3 x 30 seconds

Workout #14

  • Iso Band Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Band Single Arm Preacher Bicep Curl – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Chin Up – 3 x AMRAP (as many reps as possible)

Workout #15

  • Door Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  •  Banded Bicep Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Underhand Bicep Curl – 3 x 15

Workout #16

  • Isometric Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Ledge Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Door Curls – 3 x 30 seconds

Workout #17

  • Band Single Arm Bicep Preacher Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Ledge Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Chin Up – 3 x AMRAP (as many reps as possible)
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Workout #18

  • Close Grip Chin Up – 4 x AMRAP
  • Close Grip Chin Hold – 4 x 39 seconds
  • Ledge Curls – 3 x 15 reps

Workout #19

  • Cable Band Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Band Iso Curl – 3 x 15 reps
  • Door Curls – 3 x 15 reps

Workout #20

  • Wide Grip Band Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Ledge Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Underhand Band Curls – 3 x 15

Workout #21

  • Band Concentration Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Band Bicep Curls- 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Chin Up – 3 x AMRAP

Workout #22

  • Isometric Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Cable Band Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Chin Hold – 3 x 30 seconds

Workout #23

  • Wide Grip Band Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Towel Hammer Iso Hold – 3 x 15 reps
  • Close Grip Chin Up – 3 x AMRAP (as many reps as possible)

Workout #24

  • Decline Dumbbell Bicep Curl – 4 x AMRAP
  • Underhand Bicep Curls – 4 x 39 seconds
  • Ledge Curls – 3 x 15 reps

Workout #25

  • Dumbbell Hammer Curls – 3 x 15 reps
  • Cable Band Curl – 3 x 15 reps
  • Door Curls – 3 x 15 reps

The Bottom Line

You now have a huge arsenal of 25 bicep-focused arm workouts to enable you to build your biceps muscles at home anytime you wish. By investing in a cheap set of resistance bands, an adjustable dumbbell set, and a bench you will have all the strength training equipment you need to work not only your biceps muscles but your whole body.

I recommend training your biceps every 5 days with a different at-home arm workout and curl variation. Work through the above biceps workouts, rotating to the next one in order as presented in this article. That will provide you with a fresh biceps workout every time you train for the next 100 days. At the end of that time, you can expect your t-shirts to be a lot tighter and your arm muscles a lot bigger!

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you build bicep muscles at home with dumbbells?

The best way to build bicep muscles at home with dumbbells is to perform three exercises that work the muscle in a slightly different way. My favorite dumbbell based 20-minute bicep workout is the following:
Alternate Dumbbell Curl
Hammer Curl
Close Grip Chin Hold
Perform 3 sets each on the first two exercises. Start with 15 reps on each set, with a 60-second rest between sets. If you are able to add extra weight to the dumbbells, increase the weight slightly on each set and drop the reps by two. On the close grip chin hold, hold for 30 seconds for each of three sets. 

Which is best, hammer curls or supinated curls?

If your goal is biceps development, the supinated curl is the better option as t more directly targets the biceps brachii. If possible, however, I recommend doing both exercises in your workout routine for complete muscle development. The hammer curl will develop the lower part of the bicep and the upper forearm more than the supinated curl.

What are the best biceps exercises?

The single best bicep exercise is the standing alternate cable machine curl. The reason is that the cable provides continuous tension on the biceps, whereas when you use free weights such as in the barbell curl or the dumbbell curl, there is no resistance in the top and bottom parts of the movement. Any exercise that allows you to work each bicep individually will also be better than one that works them together. As a result, a dumbbell bicep workout is better than a barbell one. The best bicep workout routine will combine a cable curl exercise with a dumbbell curl move and finish with a bodyweight move like the close grip chin. 

Steve Theunissen

Steve Theunissen is a former gym owner and personal trainer based in Tauranga, New Zealand. He is the author of six hardcopy books and more than a hundred ebooks on the topics of bodybuilding, fitness, and fat loss.

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