Arm blasters can be a great way to blow up your biceps when used correctly. So how should you properly use an arm blaster?
Basic steps for using an arm blaster
- Place the harness around your neck.
- Adjust the straps so the pad sits just under your sternum (perhaps an inch under your chest).
- Sit the back of your arms (triceps) against the pad on either side of you. Your arms should now be facing outwards.
- Admire how great your arms look (optional, but highly recommended).
- Curl whilst maintaining contact with the pad and minimizing momentum. Keep it strict.
Where should an arm blaster sit?
Placement and positioning are important when it comes to proper arm blasting.
Position the pad such that it rests just below your sternum, perhaps an inch or so under your chest. Use the straps to adjust until it sits comfortably.
If you position it too low, on your stomach, this will allow you to use momentum from your stomach compressing and decompressing. This defeats the purpose of the arm blaster, so don’t do this. Don’t position it too high up either – this results in a very awkward curling experience.
Depending on the length of your arms and overall body morphology, your experience may vary. A good rule of thumb – you should be comfortable (relatively), able to curl with a full range of motion, and should feel as though there is no momentum.
Should an arm blaster be painful to use?
It depends on the kind of pain.
Muscle soreness/’pump’ sensation is fine – great, really.
Discomfort caused by friction with the pad is okay; it might be a cheap product (Rogue sells a decent arm blaster here), or just how you’re built. No biggie.
Sharp pain in the muscle/tendon or joint pain is bad. No exercise should produce pain of this kind.
How many reps should I do?
8-15: Yeah, that’s the stuff.
15-20: Feel the burn.
Given the arm blaster curl is an isolation exercise, utilising the bicep – a small muscle group, relatively high rep ranges are a good idea here. Think 8-15, or perhaps even 20 if you’re feeling particularly masochistic. Fewer than 8 reps will tempt cheating, defeating the purpose of the exercise.
That said, non-bodybuilders may have their own reasons to go heavier with fewer reps. Arm wrestlers have some fairly crazy looking workout techniques, maybe a 1rm arm blaster curl isn’t so strange in their world.