Do You Need Isolation Exercises For Your Forearms
Added On August 30, 2011
Let's face it big forearms are just as cool as big biceps. That's why you see so many people doing wrists curls and reverse wrists curls. But are isolation exercises really needed when it comes to forearm training? Well, it depends.
If you want to train your forearms purely for size and you are a beginner just starting out it's pointless because they will get plenty of stimulation from pull-ups, rows, deadlifts, Romanian deadlifts and other back and biceps exercises. At the same time your wrists extensors work very hard during shoulder exercises such as lateral raises and support your wrist isometrically during many movements and everyday labor. It's pretty easy to overtrain your forearms especially the wrist extensors. That's why I don't recommend exercises such as Zottman curls - too stressful. So if you are a beginner bodybuilder don't bother with training forearms. They will get bigger from all other exercises - I promise. However there are a few situations when forearm training is useful.
If you are intermediate or advanced lifter and you have a weak grip (too much straps usage) you might benefit from forearm training such as fat-bar deadlifts, towel pull-ups, hand grippers, bucket of rice..etc.
If you are an advanced bodybuilder and your biceps just don't want to grow anymore you might benefit from some dedicated forearm work. The forearm and the biceps work together during many movements and that's why bodybuilders have broken "arm plateaus" by improving forearm strength and size. If you fall into that category you can give this a try.
If you are a combat sport athlete strong grip and wrists are crucial. Being able to throw punches all night will be easier if your wrists are strong. Also strong grip is highly recommended if you love grappling and stuff.
If you have a forearm injurie you might speed up the recovery by doing some isolation work. However if you have chronic tennis or golfer's elbow I think the best approach is outlined in this article dedicated to tendonitis and similar stuff.
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