PILATE-EASE: Build Your Biceps & Triceps

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When you have to sit at a desk most of the day, how do you build your biceps and triceps?  We’ve got a few tips that you can at the office or at home.

Take 1-lb. or 2-lb. weights to work and leave them under your desk. If you forget your weights, try using two bottles of water.

Use your scheduling software to schedule an appointment for your biceps. It  could be just before lunch and just before you leave for the day.

Posture first – focus from the core. Sit up tall, imagining the top of your head floating up toward the ceiling and your shoulder blades sliding effortlessly toward your tail bone. Put your corset on – imagine a corset is holding your core in but still allowing you to breathe deeply. You should feel a little bit of work in the muscles of your core as you do this.

Biceps

  • Holding your 1 or 2 pound weight or bottle of water in your hand, reach your arm out level with the floor. Do not let your shoulders creep up toward your ears.
    • Bend at your elbow for 15 reps. Do not allow any other part of your arm or body move. If you feel tension in your neck/shoulders decrease the weight. If you are using 1 pound weights, switch to bottles of water and pour some of the water out until you are at a weight that will allow you to keep your arm at this level without creating tension in your shoulders.
  • Reach your arms out to the side, still level with your armpit.
    • Bend at your elbow for 15 reps. Do not allow any other part of your arm or body move. If you feel tension in your neck/shoulders decrease the weight. If you are using 1 pound weights, switch to bottles of water and pour some of the water out until you are at a weight that will allow you to keep your arm at this level without creating tension in your shoulders.

Triceps

  • Keeping your arms close to your sides, bring your elbow out behind you creating as close to a 90 degree angle between your upper arm and your forearm as possible without creating tension in your neck/shoulders. Keep your upper arm completely still.
    • Straighten your arm completely and then bend at the elbow for 15 reps.
  • Bring both arms over your head, with both hands meeting behind your head. Keep your elbows close to your ears possible while creating as close to a 90 degree angle between your upper arm and your forearm as possible. (again, without creating tension in your neck/shoulders).
    • Keeping your elbows completely still, bend and straighten your forearm for 15 reps. If you need to modify the movement (don’t straighten completely) do so.

Begin with just ten reps of each, twice a week. If you feel no strain and/or little challenge create a bit more resistance on your own – try imagining that the water bottles/weights are actually 10 pound weights and/or increase to 2 pound weights. When you have been doing this for 3 weeks with no strain during the exercise, try increasing to 3 times a week. If at any point you find that you are straining back down to your previous level of exercise. 

About Heather Neff

About Heather Neff
Heather received her Pilates certification from Body Arts and Science International in March of 2006. When she was first introduced to Pilates she was so inspired by its restorative and transformational powers that she decided to devote her career to teaching it. All it took was a mat class for her to see the changes in her own body in a matter of weeks. She began teaching in 2003 and received a Personal Training Certification from the National Academy of Sports Medicine in 2004. In her classes, Heather incorporates exercises from various teaching styles to create a program tailored to her individual clients needs. Her experience ranges from rehabilitation to athletic workouts for clients of all ages. She sees her clients as unique individuals and her focus is giving each client the well rounded workout they need and deserve.

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