In weight training, French curls are exercises used to work the weight lifter’s triceps. The triceps are a group of muscles located in the back of a person’s arms. French curls can be used to help tone the triceps as well as to build muscle mass. Some people prefer to perform French curl exercises while they are standing or seated on a weight bench while others like to do them lying down.
A French curl is performed using two arms at the same time. To perform a French curl, an individual may sit on a weight bench with the back of the weight bench inclined just a little. Then, making sure his back is firmly against the weight bench, he grips a barbell and lifts it straight overhead into the starting position for the French curl. He should then bend his elbows, lowering the barbell toward the back of his head until. Finally, he moves the barbell in reverse, pushing it back overhead until it is at arms’ length from his body once more.
It’s important to keep good form in mind while performing French curls, which includes keeping the elbows pointed upward and the hands close together. The weight lifter should work to keep his elbows stable during this exercise, limit movement to the elbows, contract his abdominal muscles, and use controlled movements for the duration of the exercise. While the weight lifter should straighten his elbows when pushing the barbell away from him and extending his arms, he should not allow his elbows to lock during the French curl. Swinging the barbell or locking the elbows could make the French curl exercise less effective and could even cause a painful injury. The exerciser can, however, choose whichever type of barbell grip feels best for him: thumbs held over the bar or thumbs held under the bar.
Often, individuals who are performing French curls have another person present to help them. For example, a weight training partner may hand the lifter the barbell from behind the bench. This helps the weight lifter to get into the proper position for performing French curls without unnecessary straining. The partner may remain on hand to help in case the exercise becomes too difficult, particularly when an individual performs this exercise using heavy weights. Beginners may do well to perform this exercise using lighter weights, gradually working up to additional weight when he feels ready.