A tricep bar is a metal bar used primarily for exercising the triceps muscle group of the human body. The bar is typically about 34 inches (about 86 cm) in length and weighs approximately 23 pounds (10.88 kg). It is oval in shape and contains two small parallel bars within the oval, which are used as hand grips during weight lifting exercises. Weight plates are placed on both ends of the bar and are securely fastened with weight bar clamps.
The triceps are the large muscles located on the back of the arm. They are made up of three bundles of muscles that are attached to the elbow. This is the large muscle group located on the back of the arm below the deltoids. Weight lifters strengthen the triceps to give them more strength for implementing bench pressing exercises, as well to provide for a better overall shape in the arm. Many body builders utilize the side triceps pose during competition to highlight the symmetrical balance of the arms.
The benefit of using the tricep bar over the standard straight bar is the reduction of stress on the elbows, forearms, and wrist. This stress reduction is accomplished by allowing the weight lifter the ability to hold the bar from multiple angles, enabling an unrestricted curling movement. By reducing the stress on external joints and muscles, weightlifters can limit unnecessary injuries caused by strains or muscle pulls.
One of the primary tricep bar exercises is the tricep French curl. This exercise is accomplished by holding the bar over the head and slowly lowering the bar behind the head by bending the forearms at the elbow. French curls are a powerful exercise because they provide full capacity development of all three head muscles of the tricep. It gives the weight lifter the isolation benefits of using free weights while also giving the benefit of a compound movement.
Another exercise used with the tricep bar is known as the skull crusher. In this exercise, the weight lifter lies flat on a weight bench and raises the bar over the front of the chest. The bar is then lowered to the front of the forehead, bending the arms at the elbows while keeping the upper arms vertical. The bar is then raised from the forehead position back into a straight position over the chest.