Biceps curls

This is probably the most popular exercise to achieve the goal of strong and bulging upper arms. Biceps curls train this arm muscle very efficiently and are very suitable for building mass. You can often see Biceps exercises not only with the dumbbell but also with the barbell. Both are very popular fitness instruments for it.

The advantage of the dumbbell variant: Each arm is trained individually here, so you can better strengthen your weaker side. Usually, everyone has a strong and a weak side. In barbell curls, your body automatically and unconsciously balances it out, so the stronger side gets stronger, but the weaker side does not.

Biceps curls are an excellent exercise for beginners, as the execution is uncomplicated and harmless. Anyone can do this exercise from home and doesn't even need a gym membership, just a few dumbbells.

Biceps curls with the dumbbell at a glance

  • Basic exercise for the biceps
  • Many different variations
  • Suitable for beginners
  • Suitable for training at home

Training course

Step 1: The starting position

Take a dumbbell in each hand, stand upright and make sure that you take a hip-width apart stand. Look straight and fix on a point. Leave your abdominal muscles tense throughout the exercise to ensure a straight stand. Pull your shoulders back and turn your arms so that your thumbs point outwards. Your arms should be tense here as well. 

Now take a deep breath!

Step 2: The upward movement

Now bring the dumbbells close to your body and guide them powerfully towards the shoulders. Do that without creating momentum by bending your forearms over your elbows. Try to keep your upper arms close to your body throughout the exercise. When the dumbbell is at its highest point, tense up your biceps for another second. Don't forget to exhale as you make the upward movement.

Step 3: The downward movement

Move the dumbbells down slowly and in a controlled manner. Try not to lower the arms in just one drop, but work constantly against the weight. This particular part of the exercise also plays a significant role in the success of the biceps curls.


In biceps curls the are two specific errors that are commonly seen. On the one hand, many use weights that are way too heavy. This results in them trying to desperately balance the weights out by forcing them up with momentum.

However, this affects the whole workout and creates a second mistake. The targeted muscles won't be used correctly so it reduces the effect of the exercise significantly.  Furthermore, it also increases the risk of vertebral injury in the back. It's better to use lighter dumbbells for the start and pay attention to the correct execution so that you feel the targeted muscles during the exercise.

Correct Technique Pointers


  • Your arms remain tense throughout the exercise 
  • Your upper arms stay close to the body and barely move 
  • The upward movement is powerful but without momentum 
  • The downward movement is slow and controlled 
  • Don't let the weights pull down

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