DARK SECRETS OF MUSCLE TURN YOUR BICEPS INTO CANNONBALLS WITH “BARBELL DRAG CURLS” This is an exercise I thought I serendipitously “invented” 14 years ago. I was at the gym and trying to attempt a “personal best” in the barbell curl. Personal best at that time was only 40lbs for 10 difficult reps with my pencil-sized biceps. I grabbed a 60lb barbell, knowing that I had to open the “body English” dictionary and unknowingly I ended up pulling my elbows up as if I was doing an upright barbell row. I liked the feeling in my biceps and ended up doing more and more. People were looking at me funny in the gym and the next day I felt sore as hell. For the next couple of months I performed this “curl” religiously until I opened up a muscle magazine (remember at that time there wasn’t yet much computers in households, let alone internet, facebook etc) and learned that I unfortunately wasn’t the inventor of this exercise. Nevertheless, it helped me add mass to the biceps and is one of my secret exercises. HOW TO PERFORM IT • Stand upright and keep the chest up and full • Grab a barbell with an underhand grip and keep elbows back • Drag the bar up to the abdomen as you push your elbows behind your torso, as if you are doing a barbell row while standing upright.
NOTES ON TECHNIQUE • I find that a shoulder-width grip is the best and most comfortable on my wrists. • The movement can be performed in a Smith Machine although I recommend using a barbell • It helps to maintain the contraction for a second at the top of the movement • Feel free to experiment and don’t go strictly by the books: I am personally comfortable with a slight forward bend which for me completely eliminates any trap or delt involvement. HOW TO USE THE EXERCISE: • As a stand-alone exercise in your biceps routine, followed by alternate barbell curls and a good preacher curl. • In a “rep alternate” manner: One rep you perform a barbell curl and the next rep you perform a drag curl. This is one of my favourite technique, that I use on chest (press and flyes) or shoulders (side and front laterals) for instance A DARK SECRET (READ CAREFULLY) • At the end of a set of conventional barbell curls when you attain failure, do not let go of the bar. You may not be able to perform another full rep of curl but there is still “juice that you can squeeze out” in your biceps. Instead of calling it a set, perform a few drag curls until you cannot move the bar a millimetre. If your grip failed at the end of your normal barbell curl set, release the bar for a few seconds and immediately grab it and rep out drag curls.
by Vic Veeraj Goyaram (africanmuscle)
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