When you think about lifting, the most common muscle groups that come to mind are the biceps and triceps and this is usually what people think are the most important ones to focus in order to get the thick arms they want and to build the size. This isn’t completely true. There’s actually a third, additional muscle that comes in to play and is very important in getting good, equal muscle growth.
This muscle is called brachialis, and it’s not overly popularly known. It sits just underneath the bicep and is often overlooked. It’s only really visible when you’ve flexed your elbow and even then it’s only at the side of your arm. If you don’t have much body fat then the muscle will show as circular and will be positioned between the biceps and triceps.
Growing your brachialis means that pushes the biceps out further and makes your arm look a lot bigger and thicker, giving you the look that all lifters aim for.
Common Brachialis Exercises
There are two very common exercises that are circulated through bodybuilders to work this muscle. Most people usually do these in their rotation anyway and believe that it helps. These two common moves are:
The Hammer Curl
The Reverse Curl
However, if you inspect these moves, you’ll see it’s not actually the brachialis that’s being worked, but it’s the brachioradialis that’s being worked. This is a band of muscle that goes across the top of your forearm and is the one that’s targeted with the above two moves.
That doesn’t mean that these exercises are wrong – you should still include them and they’re especially useful if you only want to focus on your upper forearms.
Most people are surprised to learn that, actually, their routine already incorporates the right movements to grow the brachialis muscle. That’s because you don’t need to do any specific movements to target the muscles and they’re usually targeted whenever you’re doing curls or when you’re doing pull ups. Continuing to do these just means that you’re working it enough to encourage its growth and to make sure that you’re getting the results that you want from your workouts.
A good way to make sure you’re working it properly is to make sure that straight bar curls (standing barbell curl and cable curls fall under this category) and add in the supinating dumbbell curls to really work the muscle. You can also throw in an extra hammer curl.to make sure you’re maximising the muscle but this is optional and isn’t completely necessary.
If you keep combining these movements with your normal rotation, as well as working your back muscles for growth, you’ll find that you’ll easily be able to build up all the muscle groups needed to give yourself the maximum, rounded muscles that you’re after on your arms to really make sure that your efforts are paying off. You don’t need to add anything special or perform any complex moves for your results, just make sure you’re working and following your rotations and that your form is always correct.