Is it possible to build lean muscle with a triceps workout at home with dumbbells? Absolutely. And it’s every bit as effective as the best gym around.
The truth is, a couple of pairs of dumbbells are all you need for practical tricep training. You don’t need heavy barbell pressing, you don’t need a cable station, and you don’t need fancy machines.
All you need is to understand tricep anatomy and function. So long as you do that, you can have fantastic workouts at home.
Today, we’ll go over everything you need to know.
Tricep Muscle Anatomy
The tricep, as its name suggests, is a three-headed muscle. It has a medial, lateral, and long head. So you need to do exercises that work all three heads for optimal lean muscle building.
The primary function of the tricep is elbow extension. But, because the long head originates at the scapula, the tricep is also involved in some shoulder-related movements. Specifically, raising our arms overhead stretches the long head of the tricep, which has important implications when choosing exercises.
Your Triceps Workout At Home With Dumbbells
You will need two pairs of dumbbells for a great triceps workout at home (or any dumbbells workout at home) – one heavy pair and one light pair of dumbbells.
Light: 5 or 10# Dumbbells
Heavy: 15 or 20# Dumbbells
Light: 10 or 15# Dumbbells
Heavy: 25 or 30# Dumbbells
Light: 15 or 20# Dumbbells
Heavy: 30 or 40# Dumbbells
You will use both sets in a great triceps workout at home with dumbbells.
Here is an example workout:
Triceps Workout With Dumbbells
Tricep Dumbbell Extensions at Home
- From a seated position or standing position, grasp the dumbbell on one ended with your hands in a V-position.
- In a slow and controlled motion, move the dumbbell directly over your head.
- To perform a rep, slowly lower the dumbbell behind your neck. Caution not to hit your head or your neck.
- Return to the start position.
- You can perform kickbacks with a single dumbbell as shown, or both dumbbells at the same time.
- Bend at the waist so that your upper body is nearly horizontal to the floor.
- Hold your arms at a 90 degree angle, and the dumbbells in the down position. This is the start position.
- Move the dumbbells up and to the rear until your arms are straight, or nearly straight.
- Return to the start position.
Tricep Dips at Home
- From a seated position on a bench, low table, or chair, extend your arms with your hands at the edge of the table.
- Your feet can be extended from you on the ground, or on another table or bench as shown.
- Slowly lower your upper body until your arms are at a 90 degree angle. This is the down position.
- Push your body up to return to the start position.
How to Maximize Your Home Tricep Workout
To make your triceps workout at home with dumbbells as effective as possible, you should be mindful of a few things. Namely:
- A proper warm-up is a must. Do 2-3 minutes of light cardio like jumping jacks, jogging in place, or a brisk walk. The key is to warm and loosen your muscles, and a quick dynamic stretching routine is even better!
- You don’t need to do more than three exercises. Also, do two to three sets per exercise and keep your repetitions between 6 and 12.
- A healthy diet is always a key to building lean muscle.
- Proper hydration is also vital. Aim for up to a gallon of water per day.
- Make sure to rest well to allow your muscle to grow optimally and recover from strenuous workouts.
Can You Train Your Triceps Effectively At Home?
If you were to ask most people this question, they would probably say no. Prevailing wisdom suggests that home training isn’t as practical and that we need a wide range of equipment to make it work.
But, the truth is, our muscles understand tension and don’t care where it comes from. So long as we can stimulate our muscles well, we can develop them well no matter where we train.
Unlike leg or chest training, where having special equipment like a rack or bench press is beneficial, excellent tricep training can be done with nothing more than a pair of dumbbells and a low table or bench for dips.
With that said, to make the most of your triceps workout at home with dumbbells, you need to get familiar with the anatomy and functions of the triceps.
Safety When Training at Home
For absolutely any workout, especially those you do at home, make sure you have plenty of room for training. Watch out for furniture, ceiling fans, and other obstacles. Also, avoid dropping dumbbells on tile or linoleum floors because that can damage the surface. It’s best to use a workout mat.
Click to see more home workout routines.