The Best Hammer Curl Alternatives for Muscle-Building: Exercise Variations and Common Mistakes

Updated: 22 hours ago


The Best Hammer Curl Alternatives for Muscle-Building: Exercise Variations and Common Mistakes

If you're looking to build muscle, the hammer curl is a great exercise to add to your routine. However, it's important to mix up your exercises and challenge your muscles in different ways. In this article, we will discuss the best hammer curl alternatives. We will prioritize the muscle-building aspects of the exercises and how to perform them properly. Lastly, we'll focus on the exercise variations and common mistakes people make when doing hammer curls.


Before we dive in: check out our full-body training program to develop a strong body and aesthetic physique; you will benefit from one of our programs. We designed a program that gives you the tools to build muscle with an easy-to-follow routine that will fit any schedule. To find out more:


What muscles does the hammer curl work?

The hammer curl works the biceps, which are the muscles on the front of your upper arms. The biceps are responsible for bending your elbow and helping you to lift objects.


The hammer curl places more emphasis on the brachialis, which is the muscle on the outer side of your upper arm. The brachialis is responsible for helping you to lift heavy objects.


How to perform the hammer curl?

To perform the hammer curl, start by standing with your feet shoulder-width apart. Hold a dumbbell in each hand with your palms facing your thighs. Bend your elbows and curl the weights up to shoulder level. Squeeze your biceps at the top of the curl and slowly lower the weights back to starting position.


Common Mistakes

One of the most common mistakes people make when doing hammer curls is not keeping their elbows stationary. This can cause you to use momentum to curl the weights and put unnecessary stress on your joints. Another common mistake is swinging the weights up and down, which takes away from the time your muscles are under tension and limits muscle growth.



Variations of the Hammer Curl


Exercise #1: Neutral Grip Pull-Ups

If you want to emphasize the back and grip strength, the neutral grip pull-up is a great alternative to the hammer curl.


To perform this exercise:

  • Start by gripping a pull-up bar with your palms facing each other.

  • Hang from the bar with your arms extended and your feet off the ground.

  • Pull yourself up until your chin is over the bar.

  • Slowly lower yourself back to the starting position.

  • Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.


Exercise #2: Pinwheel Curl

The pinwheel curl is a great way to add variety to your routine and target your biceps in a different way.


To perform this exercise:

  • Start by holding a dumbbell in each hand with your palms facing your thighs.

  • Keeping your elbows stationary, curl one weight up to shoulder level while simultaneously curling the other weight down to your waist.

  • Alternate between sides and repeat for the desired number of repetitions.


Exercise #3: Preacher Curl

The preacher curl is a great exercise for isolating your biceps and reducing momentum-assisted reps.


To perform this exercise:

  • Start by sitting on a preacher curl bench with a light weight in each hand.

  • Rest your elbows on the pads and allow your palms to face each other.

  • Curl the weights up until your biceps are fully contracted.

  • Slowly lower the weights back to starting position and repeat for the desired number of repetitions.


Exercise #4: Cable Hammer Curl

The cable hammer curl is a great exercise for targeting your biceps and brachialis. Compared to dumbbell hammer curls, this exercise allows you to keep more constant tension on your muscles.


To perform this exercise:

  • Start by attaching a D-handle to a low pulley.

  • Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and hold the handle with your palms facing each other.

  • Keeping your elbows stationary, curl the handle up to shoulder level.

  • Squeeze your biceps at the top of the curl and slowly lower the weight back to starting position.

  • Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.


Exercise #5: Spider Dumbbell Hammer Curls

The spider hammer curl is a great exercise for targeting the same muscles as the dumbbell hammer curl. The advantages of this exercise are that it allows you to keep your torso stationary and it takes away the stabilizing work of your lower body.


To perform this exercise:

  • Start by setting a bench at a 45-degree angle and holding a dumbbell in each hand.

  • Lay down on the bench with your palms facing each other and your feet flat on the floor.

  • Keeping your torso and elbows stationary, curl the weights up to shoulder level.

  • Squeeze your biceps at the top of the curl and slowly lower the weights back to starting position.

  • Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.


Exercise #6: Zottman Curl

The Zottman curl is a great exercise for targeting your biceps and brachialis. This exercise also helps to improve your grip strength.


To perform this exercise:

  • Start by standing with your feet shoulder-width apart and holding a dumbbell in each hand.

  • Position the dumbbell into an underhand grip and keep your elbows close to your sides.

  • Curl the weights up until your biceps are fully contracted.

  • At the top of the curl, rotate your palms so they face away from you.

  • Slowly lower the weights back to starting position and repeat for the desired number of repetitions.



Summary

These hammer curl alternatives are great exercises for targeting your biceps and brachialis. When performing these exercises, be sure to focus on form and technique. Common mistakes for bicep curl exercises include swinging the weights, using momentum, and not fully contracting the biceps. If you are looking for a great way to add variety to your routine and build muscle, then try incorporating some of these exercises into your next workout.


For a complete routine, check out our full-body training program to develop a strong body and aesthetic physique; you will benefit from one of our programs. We designed a program that gives you the tools to build muscle with an easy-to-follow routine that will fit any schedule. To find out more:


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