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5 Easy Flab-Fighting Arm Exercises
By Fredina J. Usher-Weems, MAR, BA/ed, HPCI, ACSM, AFAA 
Published 5/2/2012 
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When you look at yourself in the mirror, what do you see? What are you saying to yourself about your body (especially your under arms)? I’m guessing that you’re not being so kind to yourself. Am I right? Now, take a second look at yourself, remembering that you are wonderfully made. With this mindset, start motivating and encouraging yourself by saying words that will build you up and bolster your self-esteem.

OK, good. Now we’re ready to focus on some of those areas of your body that you’d like to improve. Today, we’re starting with arm fat, otherwise known as “bingo arms.” But before we start learning how to fix this problem, let’s review the factors that contribute to it. They are known as WBE: Weight, body composition and exercise.

Weight: In order to get to a healthy weight, you’ll need to maintain a cardiovascular exercise schedule. Try doing something active (that raises your heart rate) at least 3-5 times per week. If you’re new to exercising, begin with a walking routine and work your way up to 10,000 steps a day.

Body Composition: Everyone has a different body composition, which is made up of muscle, water, bone and lean tissues within your body. The body stores fat in various places (e.g. arms, stomach, and thighs); however, this time we’re talking about the fat that has been stored in your tricep area. In order to understand your body composition and total body fat percentage, you’ll need to be measured by calipers or tests like an underwater body fat test, the BodPod, or DEXA scan. Tests like these can be done at local universities, hospitals and wellness facilities. Speak to your doctor about what might work best for you.

Exercise: Lack of exercise contributes to how much fat you have on your body. As I said before, you’ll need to practice cardio workouts in order to reduce the amount of fat you have and increase the amount of lean muscle tissue. Additionally, you’ll need to include targeted exercises to tone your arms.

Here are some simple tricep exercises you can incorporate into your daily activities. Before you know it, you’ll have beautiful arms you’ll be proud to show off!


1. Arm Circles
• Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart
• Extend your arms straight out to your sides, at shoulder height
• Relax your shoulders and turn your hands upward
• Slowly circle your arms clockwise, 20 times
• Then circle your arms in the opposite direction, 20 times
2. Tricep Overhead Extension (Two Hands)
• Stand or sit on a bench or ball; a ball is more challenging
• Hold a medium weight at one end with both hands overlapping one another
• Lift the weight straight up, overhead, with your arms next to your ears
• Slowly, lower the weight behind your head until your elbows are at
about 90 degree angles
• Gently squeeze your triceps to straighten your arms over your head, without locking your joints
• Try at least three sets of 8-10 repetitions to build muscle strength and endurance
3. Tricep Extension with Resistance Tube
• Begin in a seated position (on a ball or chair)
• Hold the band in both hands at shoulder level
• Bend the right arm so that it is in front of your chest
• Keep the left arm straight out in order to hold tension on the hand
• Contract the right tricep to straighten the right arm
• Keep the back straight and abdominal muscles engaged
• Try at least three sets of 8-10 repetitions to build muscle endurance, allowing a 20-35 second break between sets
• Do the exercise on your right and left side
• Remember to listen to your body
4. Tricep Kickback with Resistance Tube
• Begin by standing in a forward lunge position with your right foot in front
• Place the tubing under your right foot, resting your right hand on your right thigh; keep your core muscles tight
• Make sure your right front leg is bent
• Push up on the toe of your back left foot
• Hold the tubing in your left hand and bring your left arm up so that it is parallel to the floor
• Keep your left elbow stabilized while kicking your left hand back behind your body
• Contract your left tricep to straighten your arm 
• Try at least three sets of 8-10 repetitions to build muscle endurance, allowing a 20-35 second break between sets
• Do the exercise on your right and left side
5. Modified Tricep Dip
• Begin by sitting on a bench or chair
• Place your hands next to, or slightly under, your hips, keeping your elbows close to the body
• Keep your core tight and knees bent
• Carefully, lift your body up onto your hands, bringing your hips
• Bend your elbows, no lower than 90 degrees, and lower your hips down towards the chair or bench
• Keep your hips close to the chair and your shoulders relaxed
• Make sure your shoulders are down and away from your ears
• To make the movement challenging, walk your feet away from the chair
• Try at least three sets of 8-10 repetitions for muscle strength and endurance, allowing a 20-35 second break between sets
• Remember to listen to your body

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