Band Bicep Curls are a great exercise to achieve an awesome bicep pump at the end of a tough workout. (Of course, that can be said of most bicep exercises.)
In this guide, I’m going to teach you how to properly do Band Bicep Curls, what muscles they work, alternatives and much more.
How To Do Band Bicep Curls
- Resistance Band – Advanced athletes will generally use a Green Band. Beginner-level athletes might use a blue or even a red band.
- Grab a resistance band, place one foot ‘inside’ the band and stand on it.
- Now, slide your hands ‘inside’ the band on the opposite end.
- Grip the resistance band shoulder-width apart with your palms facing up (supinated).
- Curl up by flexing the biceps, keeping the elbows tucked close to the sides.
- Squeeze hard at the top of the rep and then slowly lower back to the starting position.
- Once you start the set, try to maintain constant tension on the band. Don’t let the resistance band go slack at the bottom of the rep.
There are two easy ways you can adjust the tension of the band to make the movement harder or easier.
First, stand on the band with two feet instead of one. The wider your stance, the more difficult the curls will be.
The other is to grip lower on the band. Instead of gripping all the way at the end of the band, choke up on the band similar to a baseball player choking up on a bat.
Resistance Band Curls focus on the biceps of the upper arms.
More specifically, they work the Biceps Brachii and the Brachialis (the two muscles that make up the biceps)
Band Curl Rep Schemes
Ah, the age-old question – how many reps should you do?
Band Curls tend to work best when done with higher rep counts. Because of the type of resistance, Band Curls aren’t really meant to build strength. Instead, they’re a more of a pure hypertrophy ‘burn’ exercise.
I like to program band curls at the end of a workout as one to two sets of either 25 or 50, depending on how much volume has already been done up to that point.
When in doubt, hit one burnout set at the end of your workout to have your arms feeling great as you walk out of the gym (even if your gym is your garage).
Resistance Band Bicep Curl Variations
Looking to change your workout up a bit? Here are a couple of band curl variations you can try.
Band Hammer Curls
If I’m being honest, this is my preferred method of Band Bicep Curls.
This variation involves just a slight tweak of your grip on the resistance band. Instead of placing your hands ‘inside’ the resistance band and using a supinated (palms up) grip, grab the ‘outside’ of the band with a neutral (palms facing each other grip).
From here the movement itself is exactly the same.
Single Arm Band Curl
Single Arm Band Curls are not only a great way to isolate each arm one at a time, but it’s also another great way to vary the amount of resistance the band gives.
If you don’t have quite as strong of a band as you’d like, give Single Arm Band Curls a try.
Resistance Band Bicep Curls Alternatives
Don’t have a resistance band? Here are a couple of alternatives you do instead.
If you don’t have a resistance band, don’t worry, Barbell Curls are a perfect (some would even say better) alternative to their banded version.
Stand tall, grip the bar shoulder-width apart, keep elbows tucked and curl the bar up to shoulder level. Slowly lower back to the starting position and repeat for the desired number of reps.
Dumbbell Curls are another good alternative to work those biceps with a different piece of equipment.
Again, the movement itself doesn’t really change a whole lot, just make sure to not swing those dumbbells at the bottom. Maintain control throughout.
Best Exercise to Superset with Band Curls
Supersetting exercises is a great way to maximize your time and get your heart rate up. Here’s my favorite exercise to superset with Band Curls.
Band Triceps Pushdown
For me, this one is a no-brainer. Triceps are the best exercises to pair with biceps exercises and since you’re already using your band – Band Triceps Pushdown makes too much sense.
Loop your band around a pull-up bar (or whatever works best for you) and knock out some triceps extensions to go with your curls.
More Links and Info
Looking for more Biceps and Triceps exercises? Head to the Arm Farm in Exercise Library where you’ll find plenty of exercises to help you ‘fill the sleeves’.