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5 arm-toning moves

Five exercises that will tone your arms in four to six weeks.

Do these five exercises then look forward to showing off your well-toned arms in four to six weeks. Another major bonus: You’ll also build bone strength to help protect against osteoporosis.

How to get started

What to lift:
For dumbbell exercises, use five- to 10-pound (two- to five- kilogram) weights. Once you can easily do 12 repetitions, try heavier weights.

The workouts:
For each of the target areas, do either the dumbbell or the body-weight routine three times per week. Take at least one day’s rest between workouts.

The repetitions:
Complete one to two sets of eight to 12 repetitions for each of the exercises you do.

Works: biceps

1. Self-Resisted Curl

A. Stand with feet hip-width apart and toes forward. Let right arm hang by your side with palm facing forward. Reach left arm across body, placing left palm on top of right palm.

B. Bend right elbow, bringing hand slowly up to the shoulder while pressing palms together to create resistance. Keep right elbow close to body.

C. Still pressing palms together, lower right arm to your side. Complete the set; switch sides.

2. Horizontal Curl with Dumbbells

A. Holding a dumbbell in each hand, raise arms straight out to the sides until elbows and hands are almost level with shoulders, palms facing up.

B. Bend arms upward to 90 degrees, keeping upper arms parallel to floor and elbows level with shoulders (they’ll also benefit from this exercise). Palms face in.

C. Straighten arms to the starting position; repeat.

Works: anterior and middle deltoids

3. Sideways Plank Walk

A. Get into a plank position: like a push-up, with arms straight and only the hands and toes on the floor. Tighten abs. Align hands under shoulders; place feet slightly wider than hip-width apart.

B. Move your right hand about five inches (13 cm) to the right, then move your left hand the same distance to the left. Your hands should now be slightly wider than shoulder-width apart.

C. Return each hand to the starting position. Repeat, alternating leading hands.

4. Side Raise with Dumbbells

A. Stand with feet hip-width apart and knees slightly bent. Holding a dumbbell in each hand, let your arms hang by your sides, palms facing in.

B. Keep a slight bend in your elbows as you raise your arms out to the sides until the dumbbells are level with shoulders and palms face the floor.

C. Lower your arms; repeat.

Works: triceps

5. Triceps Push-up

A. Get into a push-up position with arms straight but with knees on the floor and feet in the air. Hands should be under your shoulders but closer together than in a regular push-up.

B. Tighten abs and bend arms, bringing chest toward the floor. Keep upper arms close to your sides and back straight. Elbows should point behind, not out.

C. Straighten arms to the starting position; repeat.

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