Straight Bar Bicep Curls

Who doesn’t want big muscular biceps? Well straight bar curls are the most effective way to achieve this. This is a Max-OT exercise if there ever was one. The primary muscles worked are the biceps. Secondary muscles are the forearms, shoulders, and traps.


Grip the bar about half a hand wider than shoulder width. Curl upward until you reach the top of the movement. Make sure that you keep constant tension on the biceps at the top of the movement. This is accomplished by never crossing the perpendicular plane at the top of the exercise.

Your form can be relatively loose on this movement. This will allow you to use heavier weight for greater overload and work with your body’s mechanical motions to help lift heavier weight and at the same time help to prevent injuries. As with any other exercise you should never get too sloppy. You know when you are cheating yourself out of maximum overload. Controlled cheating increases muscle overload. If you’re cheating in a manner that does not enhance overload then you are doing this incorrectly.

Lower the weight twice as slowly as you raise it. I find most people do not go as heavy as they are able to with barbell curls. Step it up and increase the weight. Remember, you should use a weight that will allow at least 4 reps and no more than 6. If you can do more than 6 reps you need to increase the weight.

Max-OT Power Tip:
Here is a guaranteed way to enhance bicep intensity when you train. It’s called Max-OT Stretch and Flex. At the bottom of each rep lock your elbows and at the same time flex your biceps for 1 second. Try this and see if it doesn’t give you the bicep workout of your life.

Curl Bar Curls

These are the same as straight bar curls, but they put more overload on the outer biceps. Also they reduce the stress to the wrists by putting them in a more favorable angle.


Other than grip, you follow the same execution parameter as with straight bar curls.

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