Arnold Arms Workout

Khirul Alam

Arnold’s Arms Workout: Complete Biceps, Triceps & Forearm Exercise Routine

Arms Exercise, Arms Workout, Arnold Arms Workout, Arnold Schwarzenegger

Arnold Schwarzenegger’s arms workout focuses on high volume and intense training. It includes exercises for biceps, triceps and forearm ensuring muscle growth.

Arnold Schwarzenegger, renowned for his impressive physique, developed a unique arms workout to build massive biceps and triceps. His routine emphasizes high volume, intensity, and variety to target all areas of the arms. Key exercises include barbell curls, concentration curls, and tricep pushdowns.

Arnold’s approach ensures maximum muscle engagement and growth. Consistency and proper form are crucial for achieving results. This workout not only enhances arm size but also improves overall strength. By following Arnold’s principles, anyone can work towards building powerful, well-defined arms.

The Arnold Blueprint: A Legacy In Arms

Arnold Schwarzenegger is a name that echoes power and perfection in bodybuilding. His arms, especially his biceps, have become legendary. This section will explore the blueprint behind Arnold’s iconic arms workout.

Early Beginnings: The Spark Of A Legend

Arnold’s journey started in a small Austrian town. He was inspired by Reg Park, a former Mr. Universe. This inspiration sparked his passion for bodybuilding.

Arnold would train daily, even at a young age. He focused on building strength and size. His dedication was unwavering, leading him to win his first competition at age 18.

The Philosophy Behind The Biceps

Arnold’s biceps philosophy is simple: intense focus and high volume. He believed in pushing his muscles to their limits. He would often perform up to 20 sets per biceps workout.

His routine included a mix of exercises to hit the biceps from all angles. Here are some key exercises in his biceps routine:

  • Barbell Curls: 4 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Incline Dumbbell Curls: 4 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Concentration Curls: 3 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Preacher Curls: 3 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Hammer Curls: 3 sets of 10-12 reps

Arnold also stressed the importance of the mind-muscle connection. He would visualize his biceps growing with each rep. This mental focus helped him achieve better results.

Below is a table summarizing Arnold’s biceps workout:

Barbell Curls410-12
Incline Dumbbell Curls410-12
Concentration Curls310-12
Preacher Curls310-12
Hammer Curls310-12

Arnold’s training was intense and disciplined. This dedication to his craft is what set him apart. His arms became a testament to his hard work and determination.

Arnold’s Pre-Contest Arms Workout Routine

Three months prior to a competition Arnold would change gears to focus on the definition and shape. The method involved superset training and increasing the power of every exercise. The routine was repeated every week three times making sure that his arms were in top fitness for the stage of competition.

Let’s take a close look at the program. Be aware that Arnold had a double split for six days. This means he was training daily, twice per day, for all week long. Let’s look at how he worked the arms!

Superset 1
Incline Dumbbell Curl48-10
Triceps Pushdown48-10
Superset 2
Standing Alternate Dumbbell Curl48-10
One-Arm Overhead Extension48-10
Superset 3
Preacher Curl48-10
Lying French Press48-10
Superset 4
Concentration Curl48-10
Reverse Triceps Pushup48-10
Superset 5
Reverse Preacher Curl510-12
Barbell Wrist Curl510-12

Superset 1: Biceps and Triceps Combo

Arnold's Arms Workout: Complete Biceps, Triceps & Forearm Exercise Routine

  • Exercise 1: Incline Dumbbell Curl 
  • Exercise 2: Triceps Pushdown

Superset 1 works on the biceps as well as the triceps simultaneously. 4 sets consisting of 8-10 reps, with minimal rest in between exercises will ensure that Arnold’s muscles were always engaged for the greatest definition.

Superset 2: Building Symmetry

Arnold's Arms Workout: Complete Biceps, Triceps & Forearm Exercise Routine

  • Exercise 1: Standing Alternate Dumbbell Curl 
  • Exercise 2: One-Arm Overhead Extension

Superset 2 is focused on gaining cohesion and working that long head on the biceps as well as the triceps. There are 4 sets of 8-10 reps each keeping the intensity up throughout.

Here’s an interesting element of Arnold’s exercise routine. Between sets of biceps Arnold would move his arms flexing, and hold the flex for 30 seconds or longer. This method helped him build not just muscle but also endurance and control vital for those long poses during competitions.

Superset 3: The Final Push

Arnold's Arms Workout: Complete Biceps, Triceps & Forearm Exercise Routine

  • Exercise 1: Preacher Curl – 4 Sets, 8-10 Reps 
  • Exercise 2: Lying French Press – 4 Sets, 8-10 Reps

Superset 3 will continue to work the biceps as well as triceps to ensure that the definition and pump are increased.

Superset 4: Focused Intensity

Arnold's Arms Workout: Complete Biceps, Triceps & Forearm Exercise Routine

  • Exercise 1: Concentration Curl – 4 Sets, 8-10 Reps 
  • Exercise 2: Reverse Triceps Pushup – 4 Sets, 8-10 Reps

Superset 4 provides a concentrated focus in your arms workout by using Arnold’s most popular sets and reps for these workouts.

Superset 5: Wrist and Forearm Work

Arnold's Arms Workout: Complete Biceps, Triceps & Forearm Exercise Routine

  • Exercise 1: Reverse Preacher Curl – 5 Sets, 10-12 Reps 
  • Exercise 2: Barbell Wrist Curl – 5 Sets, 10-12 Reps

Superset 5 concludes the workout with a bit of exercises for the wrist and forearms making sure that your entire arm is well-rounded.

Anatomy Of Arnold’s Arm Training

Arnold Schwarzenegger’s arm workout is legendary. He sculpted his biceps and triceps with precision. This section dives into the anatomy of Arnold’s arm training. Learn what made his arm routine unique.

Key Muscles For Monumental Arms

Arnold focused on specific muscles for his arm workouts:

  • Biceps Brachii: This muscle gives the arm its peak. Arnold worked it with intense curls.
  • Brachialis: Located under the biceps, it adds width to the arm.
  • Triceps Brachii: This muscle makes up the bulk of the upper arm. Arnold targeted it with heavy presses and extensions.
Muscle GroupKey Exercises
BicepsBarbell Curls, Dumbbell Curls
BrachialisHammer Curls, Reverse Curls
TricepsSkull Crushers, Tricep Dips

Volume And Intensity: A Balancing Act

Arnold’s arm routine balanced volume and intensity perfectly. He used high reps with heavy weights. This combination ensured muscle growth and definition.

Here are some key points:

  1. High Volume: Arnold performed multiple sets for each exercise. He often did 5-6 sets per exercise.
  2. Heavy Weights: He pushed himself with challenging weights. This promoted muscle hypertrophy.
  3. Short Rest Periods: Rest periods were kept short, about 60-90 seconds. This kept the intensity high.

Arnold also believed in the mind-muscle connection. He focused deeply on each rep, ensuring maximum muscle engagement.

The Bicep Routine: Crafting The Peaks

Crafting impressive biceps requires dedication and the right exercises. Arnold Schwarzenegger, known for his legendary arms, had a specific bicep routine. This routine helped him achieve those iconic peaks. Let’s dive into the key exercises of Arnold’s bicep workout.

Barbell Curls: The Foundation

Barbell curls form the base of Arnold’s bicep routine. This exercise targets the biceps brachii, giving them size and strength. Follow these steps for perfect barbell curls:

  1. Stand up straight with your feet shoulder-width apart.
  2. Hold the barbell with an underhand grip, hands shoulder-width apart.
  3. Keep your elbows close to your torso.
  4. Curl the barbell up while contracting your biceps.
  5. Pause at the top, then slowly lower the barbell back down.

Arnold recommended 3 sets of 10-12 reps for barbell curls. Focus on controlled movements to maximize muscle engagement.

Concentration Curls: Sharpening The Detail

Concentration curls isolate the biceps, enhancing muscle definition. This exercise is excellent for shaping the bicep peak. Follow these steps for effective concentration curls:

  1. Sit on a bench, spread your legs, and lean forward.
  2. Hold a dumbbell in one hand, resting your elbow on your inner thigh.
  3. Slowly curl the dumbbell up while squeezing your bicep.
  4. Pause at the top, then lower the dumbbell back down.

Arnold recommended 3 sets of 12-15 reps for concentration curls. Ensure each rep is slow and focused to fully engage the bicep muscle.

By incorporating these exercises into your routine, you can build impressive biceps just like Arnold. Remember, consistency and proper form are key to achieving those peaks.

Triceps Tactics: Building The Powerhouse

The triceps make up two-thirds of your upper arm. Building strong triceps gives your arms a powerful look. Arnold Schwarzenegger knew this and focused on his triceps. Let’s explore two key exercises: dips and skull crushers.

Dips: The Mass Builder

Dips are a staple in Arnold’s workout routine. They target the triceps, chest, and shoulders. You only need parallel bars or a sturdy bench.

  • Position yourself: Grip the bars firmly and lift your body.
  • Lower your body: Bend your elbows to a 90-degree angle.
  • Push back up: Straighten your arms to the starting position.

Repeat for 3 sets of 10-12 reps. Keep your movements slow and controlled. This ensures maximum muscle engagement.

Benefits of dips:

  • Builds mass in the triceps
  • Strengthens the chest and shoulders
  • Improves overall upper body strength

Skull Crushers: The Finisher

Skull crushers isolate the triceps, making them a perfect finisher. You need an EZ bar or dumbbells.

  1. Lie on a bench: Hold the bar with a narrow grip.
  2. Lower the bar: Bend your elbows and bring the bar to your forehead.
  3. Extend your arms: Push the bar back to the starting position.

Perform 3 sets of 8-10 reps. Keep your elbows close to your head. This ensures the triceps do all the work.

Benefits of skull crushers:

  • Isolates the triceps for maximum growth
  • Improves arm definition
  • Complements other triceps exercises

By incorporating dips and skull crushers into your routine, you can build strong, defined triceps. Follow Arnold’s lead and make these exercises a priority.

Arnold's Arms Workout: Complete Biceps, Triceps & Forearm Exercise Routine

Superset Strategies: Maximizing Growth

Arnold Schwarzenegger’s arm workout routines are legendary. His use of supersets is a key factor in maximizing muscle growth. Supersets involve performing two exercises back-to-back without rest. This method increases intensity and efficiency, leading to better results in less time.

The Art Of Alternating

Arnold often alternated between bicep and tricep exercises. This approach allows one muscle group to rest while the other works. It keeps the blood flowing and maintains a high level of intensity.

  • Barbell Curls followed by Tricep Dips
  • Hammer Curls followed by Overhead Tricep Extensions
  • Concentration Curls followed by Skull Crushers

This method is effective for balanced arm growth. Alternating exercises prevent muscle fatigue and promote continuous muscle engagement.

Real-life Examples From Arnold’s Regimen

Exercise 1Exercise 2RepsSets
Barbell CurlsTricep Dips124
Hammer CurlsOverhead Tricep Extensions104
Concentration CurlsSkull Crushers84

Arnold’s routines focused on high volume and intensity. He believed in pushing muscles to their limits. This approach resulted in his iconic arm size and definition.

Incorporating these strategies into your workout can lead to significant gains. Remember to maintain proper form and gradually increase weights. This ensures steady progress and minimizes injury risks.

Nutrition And Recovery: Fueling The Guns

Building strong arms like Arnold Schwarzenegger requires more than intense workouts. Proper nutrition and recovery are key to achieving those impressive biceps and triceps. Fueling your body with the right nutrients and allowing adequate rest ensures maximum muscle growth and strength.

Protein: The Building Blocks

Protein is essential for muscle repair and growth. It provides the necessary amino acids that help rebuild muscle fibers torn during workouts. Aim to consume protein with every meal to maintain a steady supply of these building blocks throughout the day.

Here’s a table of high-protein foods you can incorporate into your diet:

FoodProtein Content (per 100g)
Chicken Breast31g
Greek Yogurt10g

Whey protein shakes are also a convenient option post-workout. They help quickly replenish amino acids and support muscle repair.

Rest And Recovery: The Unsung Heroes

Muscles grow during rest, not during workouts. Adequate rest is crucial for muscle recovery and growth. Ensure you get 7-9 hours of sleep per night to allow your muscles to repair and grow.

Incorporate rest days into your workout routine. Overtraining can lead to injuries and hinder muscle growth. A well-planned rest schedule allows muscles to recover and come back stronger.

Here’s a simple rest and recovery plan:

  • Sleep: 7-9 hours per night
  • Active Recovery: Light activities like walking or yoga
  • Hydration: Drink plenty of water
  • Stretching: Regular stretching to improve flexibility and reduce muscle tension
Arnold's Arms Workout: Complete Biceps, Triceps & Forearm Exercise Routine

Mind-muscle Connection: The Arnold Edge

Arnold Schwarzenegger’s workouts are legendary. His arms routine is a prime example of his dedication. The secret to his success lies in the mind-muscle connection. This technique helps to maximize muscle growth and performance.

Visualization Techniques

Visualization plays a key role in Arnold’s workouts. He visualizes each muscle working during exercises. This mental imagery enhances muscle activation. Imagine your biceps swelling with each curl. Picture your triceps stretching with every extension.

Here are some effective visualization techniques:

  • Focus on the target muscle: Picture it contracting and relaxing.
  • Use mental imagery: Visualize the muscle getting bigger and stronger.
  • Stay present: Concentrate on the movement and sensation.

The Role Of Focus In Training

Focus is crucial in Arnold’s arm workouts. Maintaining concentration ensures proper form and intensity. Distractions reduce the effectiveness of exercises. Stay engaged with each rep and set.

Here are tips to improve focus:

  1. Minimize distractions: Avoid phones and unnecessary conversations.
  2. Set clear goals: Know what you want to achieve in each session.
  3. Use mental cues: Remind yourself of the muscle you are targeting.

The mind-muscle connection is the Arnold edge. It separates good workouts from great ones. By mastering visualization and focus, you can elevate your training to new heights.

Legacy And Evolution: The Impact On Today’s Athletes

The influence of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s arms workout extends beyond his bodybuilding era. His routines have shaped modern fitness culture. Athletes today still draw inspiration from his iconic techniques.

Influencing A Generation

Arnold’s dedication and unique methods have inspired countless athletes. His commitment to intense training built his legendary physique. This has set a benchmark for fitness enthusiasts worldwide.

Many athletes emulate his regimen to achieve peak performance. They admire his focus on both strength and aesthetics. His legacy continues to push them towards excellence.

Modern Adaptations Of Arnold’s Techniques

Today’s athletes have adapted Arnold’s techniques to suit contemporary fitness trends. They integrate his principles with modern equipment and scientific advancements.

Arnold’s Original TechniqueModern Adaptation
High-volume trainingPeriodized training cycles
Free weights focusCombination of free weights and machines
Basic compound movementsFunctional and compound movements

Modern athletes use a mix of traditional and contemporary methods. They balance heavy lifting with functional training. This approach ensures comprehensive development.

Incorporating Arnold’s philosophies helps in achieving balanced growth. It also aids in preventing injuries. His techniques are timeless, proving their worth across generations.

  • Intensity and volume: Athletes maintain high intensity and volume in their workouts.
  • Mind-muscle connection: Focus on the mind-muscle connection remains crucial.
  • Consistency: Regular and consistent training is key.

Arnold’s workout principles have stood the test of time. They continue to influence and shape the routines of today’s athletes.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Workouts Did Arnold Do For Arms?

Arnold Schwarzenegger’s arm workouts included bicep curls, tricep extensions, concentration curls, preacher curls, and close-grip bench presses. He trained with high volume and intensity.

How To Get Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Arms?

To get Arnold Schwarzenegger’s arms, focus on heavy compound exercises like bicep curls and tricep extensions. Maintain a high-protein diet, stay consistent with workouts, and ensure proper rest.

Is Arnold Split Good For Arms?

Yes, Arnold Split is great for arms. It targets biceps and triceps effectively, promoting muscle growth and strength.

What Is Arnold’s 21 Arm Workout?

Arnold’s 21 arm workout involves performing 21 reps in a specific sequence: 7 lower half, 7 upper half, and 7 full range curls. This technique targets different parts of the bicep for maximum muscle growth.


Achieving arms like Arnold requires dedication and the right workout routine. Consistency is key to seeing results. Remember to focus on form and gradually increase weights. By following these tips, you’ll be on your way to building impressive arms. Stay committed, and your hard work will pay off.

About the author
Khirul Alam
I'm Khirul Alam, aka NILOY FITNESS, a devoted bodybuilder and fitness expert. I write about fitness, bodybuilding, and mental health at Hercules Bodybuilding to inspire and help people reach their fitness goals. I'm committed to making a positive impact in the fitness community.