• Evan Schwerbrock

Simple and Quick Tricep Warmup

The triceps muscle group, as you may have guessed, consists of three different muscle heads. These three heads help the elbow extend throughout a large range of motion. To account for this wide range, I advise you warm-up the triceps in multiple positions to accommodate them to operate in multiple positions.


One position to warm-up the triceps in is with the upper arm pointed toward your feet. Think of your usual cable tricep extension where you keep your elbows tight to the body while bending the elbow to about 90 degrees or let your forearm touch your bicep then extend your elbow to a locked out position against resistance.


The next important position to address the triceps in is with the upper arm pointed forward at shoulder height. This position occurs in a lying skull crusher when you point your elbow to the ceiling, hold weight in your hands and lower it towards your head then extend your elbows to lock out your elbows again.


The last position to touch on is the upper arm pointed overhead. This is done during a dumbbell overhead tricep extension where you hold a dumbbell in your hands overhead with locked out arms, bend your elbows to let the weight come behind your head (keeping your elbows up), then extend your elbows again to the overhead position. This will put the triceps in a maximal stretch and should be done with caution and enough warm-up to be sure the body is ready for this position.


Now I admit this is a lot. Fortunately, I have a quick band warm-up that will let you stay in one place and still touch on all of these positions. Grab a band, attach it right above head height, and here we go.


Exercise #1: Regular Tricep Extension

Stand under where the band is anchored holding the band in each hand. Tuck your elbows into your sides and keep them there. Lock out your elbows explosively against the resistance. Bend your elbows in control to bring your elbow to a right angle. Repeat for reps.


Exercise #2: Banded Skull Crusher

Walk forward slightly in front of where the band is anchored. Fix your upper arms so they are facing straight out at shoulder height. Lock out arms, flexing the triceps. Keeping the upper arm fixed, bend the elbow until your hands are on either side of your face (in control so you don’t hit your face) then extend elbows again. Repeat for reps.


Exercise #3: Overhead Tricep Extensions

Stagger one foot forward and lean forward from the hips so your torso faces more toward the ground. Stop when your upper arm is in line with your torso in an overhead reaching position. Bend the elbows to send your hands behind your head then extend your elbow back to the locked out position. Repeat for reps.


It is easy enough to transition between each of these positions without having to reorient. Therefore, we will just throw these three moves into a quick circuit to get the triceps good and warm. Move immediately to each exercise in succession.


- 10-15 reps of Regular Banded Tricep Extension


- 10-15 reps of Banded Skull Crushers


- 10-15 reps of Banded Overhead Tricep Extensions


- 10-15 reps of Banded Skull Crushers


- 10-15 reps of Regular Banded Tricep Extension


Performing the first two exercises will progressively warm-up the triceps to make the overhead extensions safer and more doable. We then pyramid back down in difficulty again to get even more blood into the area and be sure you are ready for your workout.

This quick circuit can also serve as a great finisher after a tough pressing workout to sap every last bit of energy out of your triceps.


Give it a try and let us know how it goes!


Evan