We like to get creative when it comes time to smash your biceps and triceps to finish off your arm day. Dumbbell curls and standing triceps extensions are solid, reliable pump-givers—but why not have some fun and introduce another challenging element to your workout while pushing your mirror muscles to the brink?
Men’s Health fitness director Ebenezer Samuel, C.S.C.S. uses series like this crucifix flex finisher (which is intense in more than just the name) to challenge his typical arm day and create some additional value using the always-useful tall kneeling position.
“The beauty of the move is two-fold,” says Samuel. “First, it’s delivering a new stabilization pattern. The tall kneeling position always challenges your core and forces you to guard against rocking forward, but here you stabilize laterally, battling to keep hips and shoulders square.”
To take on the finisher, you’ll need a strong set of resistance bands and a sturdy anchor like a squat rack to affix them. If you need a good set of bands, check out this option from WODFitters.
Men’s Health/Eric Rosati
The kneeling position doesn’t just work your abs—it also keeps you honest. “Because you’re working from an unfamiliar stabilization pattern, your body won’t really be able to help you “cheat” as it does on many standard biceps and triceps moves,” Samuel says. “You won’t be able to rock into your curl, and momentum and body lean won’t help the triceps extension. As a result, your bis and tris won’t get much body lean assistance. They operate in almost complete isolation, so you should get to really squeeze on every rep.”
Add the crucifix flex finisher to cap off a full-fledged arm-day, or use the series for solid one-stop shopping if you need a quick arm pump. Do 2 sets per arm if you’re using it as a finisher, 3 sets as a standalone session.
For more tips and routines from Samuel, check out our full slate of Eb and Swole workouts. If you want to try an even more dedicated routine, consider Eb’s New Rules of Muscle program.
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