Primary Muscle Group: Biceps
Secondary Muscle Group: Forearms, Shoulders
Equipment Needed: Barbell, Incline Weight Bench
The Benefits of Spider Curl
The Spider curl exercise targets the biceps and is performed face down on an incline bench or on the flat side of a preacher bench. Using the EZ-bar makes for a more comfortable wrist position, while the angle helps to isolate the biceps and limit involvement of the shoulder muscles. This curl variation is usually performed for moderate to high reps, such as 8-12 reps per set or more, as part of upper-body or arm-focused training.
The nature of the body positioning during this exercise removes the potential for other joints, such as your hips, knees, and low back, to assist in the movement. It's very hard to cheat on spider curls. Give them a go with dumbbells or a barbell!
Some key benefits of spider curls are;
using an EZ bar grip takes the strain off the wrist that you get from a straight bar curl.
Adds size and definition to the biceps.
Positioning on the incline bench helps isolate the biceps and enforce strict form.
Great burnout movement on arm day.
If you are looking for other exercises that are the best for building muscle or wanting to lose body fat then you should check our Free Workout Plan or our Workout Plans With Coaching for professionally designed workout plans that have been proven to get results.
The Risks of doing Spider Curl
Like any other bicep exercise, make sure you warm up before you do Spider Curls. The biceps are a small muscle and spider curls really isolate your biceps so if you haven’t warmed up before a working set, you put yourself at risk of injury.
How To Do Spider Curl
1. Start by holding a weighted EZ Bar and position yourself lying face first on an inclined bench.
2. Then extend your biceps down and out in front of you so that you are able to fully contract your arm
3. Contract your biceps and curl the weights up towards your shoulders, squeezing your muscles in the process and isolating the biceps.
4. Hold for a second when you reach the top position then return back to the starting position.
5. Repeat for as many reps and sets as desired.
For Perfect Technique
Often, due to excessive momentum and too much weight being applied; the contraction of the spider curl can be neglected. Whilst it is important to progressively overload the weight throughout your training, it is far more essential to be able to create sufficient stimulus on the muscle too. In order to achieve this, try lower the weight and focus on a correct tempo (Slow eccentric and powerful concentric) with a brief pause and ‘squeeze’ at the top of the contraction.
Once you have mastered the Spider Curl exercise you can try alternative exercises that target similar muscle groups such as;
How To Do Alternate Dumbbell Bicep Curl
1. Stand holding a dumbbell in each hand with your arms hanging by your sides.
2. Ensure your elbows are close to your torso and your palms facing forward.
3. Keeping your upper arms stationary, exhale as you curl your right arm up towards your shoulder level while contracting your biceps.
4. Lower your right arm to the starting position in a controlled manor whilst making sure you keep your palms facing forward.
5. Exhale and curl your left arm up towards your shoulder level while contracting your biceps.
6. Repeat on both arms for equal amount of reps.
How To Do Single Arm Preacher Curl
1. Firstly, adjust the height of the seat on the preacher bench so that when you sit on it, the back of your upper arms sit comfortably flat on the padding.
2. Grab a dumbbell with your left hand and sit on the preacher bench.
3. The back of your left arm should be rest flat on the padding with your arm fully extended.
4. Place your right forearm on the padding for support.
5. Execute the exercise by slowly raising the dumbbell up and squeezing the bicep at the top of the movement.
6. Slowly lower the dumbbell until your arm is fully extended.