Dumbbell Bicep Curl Form



by Becca Egan, BS, NASM-CPT

Exercise or Move: Dumbbell Bicep Curl

Muscles Targeted: Biceps

Importance: Isolation movement that really targets the bicep muscle.

Proper Form:

  • Start standing, feet hip width apart, not staggered.
  • With one dumbbell in each hand, make sure palms are forward, shoulders back with tension between your shoulder blades, and elbows are at your sides.
  • Start moving the dumbbells to your shoulders, keeping your elbows at your sides, core tight.
  • Once the dumbbells get all the way to your shoulders, lower them back down.
  • Make sure your straighten your elbow completely and do not let the dumbbells swing back behind you.
  • You should be getting NO momentum for your next curl.


  • Wide curls
    • Elbows still at your side, turn your palms to face out. the curl with make and ache away from you.
  • Hammer/neutral grip curls
    • Palms facing in, complete the curl with the end of the dumbbell at your shoulder
  • 21's
    • Do 7 reps of the bottom half of the curl (from starting to half way up, use a mirror to make sure your elbow doesn't go more than 90 degrees on the way up), 7 reps of the top half of the curl (from the middle of the curl, all the way to your shoulder, use a mirror to make sure your not letting your forearm drop below parallel to the floor), 7 reps of a full curl.
  • If you feel pain or pressure in your lower back, you can bring curl wide seated on a bench or swiss ball.
  • Make sure your hands can reach all the way down so your elbow is straight.

Sample Workout:

Bi's and Tri's

  • 10 hammer curls
  • 10 bent over tricep kick backs
  • 10 wide curls
  • 10 skull crushers
  • 21's
  • 10 TRX tricep extension

Complete 3 full rounds, rest 1-2 minutes between rounds.

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