This exercise provided courtesy of Billy Polson, founder and co-owner of DIAKADI Body training gym, voted best personal training gym in San Francisco by CitySearch in 2006.
The classic standing barbell curl is a staple of any biceps-building exercise regimen.
Stand with a barbell held in front of you so that your arms are extended down and your palms are facing away from your body. Hold your elbows in front of your ribs; this will help keep the biceps muscle engaged throughout the movement. Your hands should be positioned on the bar directly in line with your shoulders so that your upper arms are touching your ribs (see Photo 1).
- From the starting position, bend your elbows and curl the bar up toward your chest, keeping your upper arm still. Be careful to engage your core so that you do not swing your body. Focus on using your biceps muscles to curl the bar (see Photo 2).
- When you have brought the bar up so that you fully flex the bicep (while keeping your wrists straight), reverse the motion and bring the bar slowly back down to the starting position. Be careful not to bring the weight up past a point where your forearms are perpendicular with the floor—stopping the range of motion at this point will keep your biceps fully flexed and engaged at the top of movement. Be sure to keep your biceps engaged as you bring the weights back down (see Photos 3 and 4).