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6 Ways To Grow Bigger Biceps At Home +What You Need

Want bigger biceps but have no desire to go to the gym? There are some exercises you can do with things everyone has at home or you can get some simple and cheap equipment to get even better results.

Getting bigger and stronger biceps at home is easily done with resistance bands, water jugs, or a partner and a towel. Adjustable dumbbells are another cheap but very effective option. Doing different types of biceps curls for high repetitions 5x a week should yield significant results in 6 weeks.

What can you use and how can you use them to grow your biceps at home? Keep reading to find out.

Biceps Exercises You Can Do At Home Without Equipment

Even if you don’t have any exercise equipment, there are a few ways to get your biceps to grow at home with things everyone has in their house.

  • Inverted Rows: Lie on your back under a sturdy table or bar, with your palms facing up and hands gripping the bar or table’s edge. Pull your chest toward the bar by contracting your biceps, and then lower yourself back down.
  • Milk Jug Bicep Curls: Fill some milk jugs with water and curl them. Keep your elbows in place next to your body.
  • Isometric Bicep Holds: Hold your hands together in a praying position in front of your chest. Press your palms together and create tension in your biceps by contracting them for 20-30 seconds at a time. You can add an extra challenge by holding something heavy.
  • Towel Bicep Curls: Hold a towel vertically with both hands, gripping each end. Perform bicep curls by bringing the ends of the towel toward your shoulders while keeping your elbows stationary. You’ll need a partner to hold the middle of the towel down.
Diagram of the biceps highlighted red

Biceps Growth Tips

You grow a muscle by challenging it’s capabilities and doing slightly more weight and/or repetitions every time you work out.

With the exercises mentioned above, this can be difficult since they are often limited in weight and you have to do a lot of repetitions. There are a few tips to make these exercises more challenging and so more effective:

  • Go Slow: The best way to feel light weights more is by performing the movement slowly. Especially when making the targeted muscle longer, slow down the tempo. Two seconds up, 4-5 seconds down is a good tempo to shoot for.
  • Use strict form: Don’t throw the weight around. Keep your elbows close to your body, don’t flare them out. Also keeping them slightly in front of your body can put a lot of extra tension on the biceps.
  • Use short rest periods: Another way to do this is by using short rest periods. Perform a set to failure, then rest while keeping the weights in your hands. Rest 5-10 seconds and go again. Take short rests and then a longer one before starting again.
  • Do Enough Workouts: If you only focus on the biceps, you can do a home workout that’s not super intense 5 times a week. The lack of weight and intensity will be compensated by the frequency.

How much can you expect to gain on your biceps by doing this? It depends on if you’re trained or not. People that don’t work out or don’t do any biceps exercises will see decent results by doing this fr 4-6 weeks.

If you’re already training your biceps, the results might be minimal since you’re already used to more/heavier exercises. However, you can use this to maintain when on holiday for example.

Cheap Home Gym Bicep Equipment And How To Use It

Here are the best pieces of equipment that are good for training your biceps and are affordable.

1. Resistance bands

One of the most versatile pieces of equipment in a home gym are resistance bands. While you can do many things with resistance bands, we’re just focusing on biceps here. And you can train your biceps very well with resistance bands. 

Resistance bands are really cheap and you can get a whole set for $25. Get a set that includes anchors and handles so you can immediately use them for all kinds of exercises. They’re not only useful for simple bicep curls but you can do way more with them.

How To Use Resistance Bands To Train Biceps

So how can you train your biceps with resistance bands. It’s the same as pretty much all other equipment: Curls. Biceps curls are basically where you bring your hands towards your shoulders. That bending motion uses the biceps and when you add resistance and do it often enough, they’ll grow and become stronger. 

The best resistance band biceps exercises are:

  • Resistance band biceps curls: Grab the band with both hands palms facing up and bend your arms towards your shoulders and straighten them again in a controlled manner.
  • Resistance band hammer curls: The same as before but keep the palms facing each other. 
  • Resistance band one arm curl: Instead of two hands, use one at a time so you can focus more. 
  • Resistance band concentration curl: Attach the band low. Then take a knee. Grab the band with one hand and put your elbow on your knee. Now bend your elbow slowly and return. 

Except the concentration curl, just stand up and stand on the resistance band to hold it in place. If it’s too long, you can wrap it around your feet a few times. For the concentration curl use a door anchor and attach it to the bottom of the door. 

With resistance bands, don’t focus on doing the exercise as heavy as possible. Move slowly and focus on keeping good form. Of course you should use a band that is challenging but form is more important. 

2. Dumbbells

If you’re just looking for bigger biceps, dumbbells are always the first thing everyone thinks of. And for good reason; dumbbells are an awesome tool for any muscle-building and general workouts. There are plenty of bicep exercises you can do with dumbbells so you won’t get bored quickly.

While a full set of dumbbells isn’t cheap, a single pair won’t break the bank. But is a single weight dumbbell enough? Maybe not. That’s why adjustable dumbbells are a great solution. Cheap adjustable dumbbells are available for relatively little money compared to a full set of dumbbells.

Click here to find which dumbbells I recommend for home gyms.

How To Use Dumbbells To Train Biceps

Dumbbells give plenty of exercise options for your biceps. It’s the first thing people grab in any gym when they want to grow their biceps so they’re great for at home too. 

The basis of using them is the same as resistance bands. Grab the dumbbells and bring them towards your shoulders. You can still do that in different ways though. 

Here are some good options:

  • Biceps curl
  • Hammer curl
  • Inclue biceps curl
  • Include Hammer curl
  • Concentration curl

If you’re wondering how many sets and reps you should do, look at the bottom of this article for more information. 

3. Pull up bar

Pull ups don’t only target your biceps but also many back muscles. In fact most pull up variations are more focused on the back than biceps. That doesn’t really make it bad for biceps. There are some variations (underhand close grip) that makes you use your biceps much more than others.

Why I put it in here is because pull ups really help you to integrate your newfound bicep strength into your whole body. You can purely train biceps for a little bit but after a while, you’ll start running into problems if your don’t strengthen the muscles around them. If on muscle is too strong in the chain, you can hurt the ones around it more easily because they can’t handle the stress.

Pull ups do a great job of strengthening most of the muscles around the biceps. Besides that, a thicker back does a lot to make you look bigger, even if you can’t see it in the mirror.

How To Use a Pull Up Bar To Train Biceps

The pull up bar is a piece of equipment that can be used in different ways to train different muscles. Although you’ll always be using the back, by using a close grip, the biceps will be targeted more. 

You can use an underhanded, overhanded or neutral grip to target slightly different muscles in the arms. So getting a pull up bar that allows for a lot of different grips is a good choice. 

You’re unlikely to be able to do many repetitions with pull ups, even by using a close grip (which is a bit easier). That means using a pull up bar is a good strength builder but likely you won’t do much for size. So using a pull up bar in combination with one of the other things mentioned above will yield great results. 

Image of a woman doing bicep curls

How Often To Train Biceps?

Having the equipment and knowing how to use it is one thing. But where the real growth comes from is by following the right workouts. 

That means doing the right:

  • Exercises
  • Amount of sets
  • Amount of repetitions per set
  • Number of workouts per week

There can be a lot of variation in those factors that impact your outcomes. 

  • For biceps, it’s good to train three times a week. Every day is possible but only if you don’t train too intensively. It’s more time efficient to train heavier three times a week than every day. 
  • Per workout, using 2-3 different exercises is a good idea. Try to use different grips to target the different muscles in the biceps. At least use a grip where the palms of the hands are facing up and where the palms are facing each other. 
  • Aim to get 6-10 heavy sets done per workout. That means warm-up sets don’t count. The amount of resistance should be challenging. That means at the end of the set (the number of repetitions you have in mind) you should have 1-4 repetitions left in the tank. You shouldn’t go to failure on every set, leaving a little bit in reserve is better. 
  • The number of repetitions per set should be somewhere in the 8-15 range. The lower the reps per set, the heavier the resistance has to be. That way you focus more on building strength. The higher the reps, the lower the resistance has to be which focuses more on muscle size. 

If you don’t have enough resistance to make 8 repetitions challenging, using higher repetitions is a good way to go. You can also move slower to increase the time under tension.