Tricep dips are a great addition to your workout arsenal because they allow you to build strength and muscle OUTSIDE of the gym!
Perfect for home gym users with limited equipment, business travellers in looking for a hotel room workout or just if you can’t be bothered to drive to the gym today.
Everything you need to know about tricep dipping is on this page, here’s what we’ll cover:
- Why You Should Do Dips
- How To Perform Them Correctly
- Common Mistakes That Rob You of Progress
- Advanced Dips For A New Challenge
Let’s get started!
Why You Should You Do Dips?
Dips are an effective tricep focussed exercise that should be part of any workout routine whether you’re trying to build muscle or lose fat.
Here’s the most important reasons you should add this exercise to your workout plan:
More Muscle Moved!
We know that compound exercises where multiple muscles are worked at once are more productive than isolation exercises where only a single muscle is worked.
Compound movements where your entire body moves are even better…and as I’m sure you’ve already figured out dips tick this box.
Shoulder Injury? Dips are perfect!
If you’ve sustained a shoulder injury or you’re unable to
barbell bench press
for whatever reason then dips could be the answer.
Many trainees maintain their bench press strength using triceps dips as the different movement allows them to work similar muscles without pain.
Want Lower Pecs?
Guys seem to be obsessed with lower pec development. Heavy bench pressing alone can provide enough size across the entire pec area but still people try to focus on the lower pecs.
Decline bench presses are usually the order of the day but in fact tricep dips are a superior exercise for this purpose.
Convinced? Good, now let’s learn how to perform them correctly!
How To Perform Tricep Dips
Dips are a simple exercise and you may scoff at the mere suggestion you need a guide to tell you how to perform tricep dips correctly.
Whilst the movement is simple, there are a few key markers you should be aware of to ensure you use this exercise effectively.
- Get into position – Dipping stations place your hands around shoulder width apart so if you’re improvising ensure your width is similar
- Hold yourself up – Lift yourself up and straighten your arms so your elbows are locked (see picture below). Cross your legs too.
- Deep breath – Take a deep breath and hold it, your core should feel tight
- Unlock elbows, lean forward – Relax your elbows and lean forward slightly
- Lower below parallel – Lower yourself until your shoulders go below your elbow
- Push Up and lock – Push with your triceps to get your body back into the starting position with your elbows locked
- Breath and repeat – Take a breath at the top, tighten up your core again and do the next rep
Common Mistakes That Rob You of Progress
You could do be doing the best exercise in the world but if you’re doing it wrong you won’t reap the benefits.
This exercise is no different; here are the most common mistakes you should avoid:
Mistake #1 – Half Reps
Its common sense that limiting the range of motion in any exercise reduces its effectiveness but still people do it…
Ego. Lifting weights heavier than you can handle in good form is both dangerous and unproductive. A full range of motion rep will always produce more results than a heavier partial rep.
Make sure your shoulder goes below your elbows; lighten up the weight if you need to!
Mistake #2- Breathing at the wrong time/holding your breath
You should be breathing at the top position when your elbows are locked out, you then take a deep breath and tighten your core again.
Breathing in between reps or at the bottom releases the intra abdominal pressure and makes it harder to drive yourself back up.
On the opposite side, holding your breath completely is a bad idea. You don’t want to pass out midway through a set when your elevated.
Stay safe, stay strong. Breathe at the top.
Advanced Tricep Dips For A New Challenge
Question: What do you do when you can perform bodyweight dips easily?
Answer: Weighted dips are the next step and they are my absolute favourite tricep exercise and they provide all the stimulus your tricep muscles need!
Your upper arm arsenal now has everything you need to develop strong, muscular triceps. Your arms will look bigger and your pressing movements will benefit so you’ll get stronger everywhere at the same time!