The three main causes of arm flab are weight gain, lack of physical activity, and age. Gaining weight can lead to excess fat storage in the upper arms, and lack of physical activity can lead to a “skinny fat” look, where you are thin with no muscle tone. Unfortunately, hormonal changes as we age can be another cause of developing arm flab. Below are some of my favorite moves to help tighten and slim your arms at home.
Free weights required.
The Move: Tricep Kickbacks
How to: Start with a dumbbell in each hand and your palms facing your torso. Keep your back straight with a slight bend in the knees and bend forward at the waist. Your torso should be almost parallel to the floor. Keep upper arms close to your torso and parallel to the floor. There should be a 90-degree angle formed between your forearm and upper arm. While keeping your upper arms stationary, exhale and use your triceps to lift the weights until the arm is fully extended. After a brief pause at the top contraction, inhale and slowly lower the dumbbells back down to the starting position.
How to: Grab a couple of dumbbells and stand with a straight torso and the dumbbells by your side at arm’s length. While maintaining the torso in a stationary position (no swinging), lift the dumbbells to your side with a slight bend on the elbow. Continue to go up until your arms are parallel to the floor. Exhale as you execute this movement and pause for a second at the top. Lower the dumbbells back down slowly to the starting position as you inhale.
How to: Stand up straight with a dumbbell in each hand at arm’s length. Keep your elbows close to your torso and rotate the palms of your hands until they are facing forward. Keeping the upper arms stationary, exhale and curl the weights while contracting your biceps. Continue to raise the weights until your biceps are fully contracted and the dumbbells are at shoulder level. Hold the contracted position for a brief pause as you squeeze your biceps. Then, inhale and slowly begin to lower the dumbbells back to the starting position.
How to: Lie down on a bench or the floor holding a pair of dumbbells directly above your chest with your palms facing each other. Your feet should be flat on the floor. Without moving your upper arms, bend your elbows and slowly lower the weights toward the sides of your head. Avoid flaring your elbows. Reverse the move to return to starting position.
How to: Position your hands shoulder-width apart on a secured bench or stable chair. Slide your butt off the front of the bench with your legs extended in front of you. Straighten your arms, keeping a little bend in your elbows to keep tension on your triceps and off your elbow joints. Slowly bend your elbows to lower your body toward the floor until your elbows are at about a 90-degree angle. Be sure to keep your back close to the bench. Once you reach the bottom of the movement, press down into the bench to straighten your elbows, returning to the starting position.