How to Get Bigger Forearms Fast: The 7 Best Workouts

How to Get Bigger Forearms Fast - Featured

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The forearms are easily the most underrated muscle group in the human body. The upper arm muscles — biceps, triceps and shoulders — get much more attention, but the lower arm muscles are equally important. After all, they get more exposure than any other muscle. While the rest of your upper body is hiding under your shirt, your forearms are on full display.

Here’s what to do if you want to know how to get bigger forearms fast. Try these workouts for bigger forearms regardless of your experience level.

1. Pull-ups

The most effective workouts for bigger forearms mainly come from pulling exercises because your forearms do much of the work. The classic pull-up is ideal. For the best results, try different pull-up variations and see which one works best for you:

  • Band-assisted pull-up
  • Underhand grip pull-up
  • Overhand grip pull-up
  • Neutral grip pull-up
  • Towel pull-up
  • Archer pull-up
  • One-arm pull-up

Another reason why the pull-up is such an effective way to get bigger forearms fast is because it only deals with your body weight. These exercises are great for smaller muscle groups because they develop your body’s functional strength, helping you target neglected areas and build a balanced physique. 

2. Bicep Curls

Bicep curls are also pulling exercises, which are excellent for building your forearm muscles. Although the biceps are the main focus, they work together with your forearms to move the weight. It’s important to do exercises that incorporate both the upper and lower arm to avoid muscle asymmetry issues and lower the risk of injury.

There are many bicep curl variations, but the best ones to grow your forearms are dumbbell hammer curls or overhand curls. These variations stimulate the brachioradialis and extensors — the two largest and flashiest muscles in the lower arm. After the pull-ups, the hammer curls or overhand curls are the best workouts for bigger forearms.

3. Bent-Over Rows

The bent-over row is another excellent back exercise that also trains your forearms. This exercise is designed to test the limits of your body’s pulling strength, so you will see the best results by doing short sets with five to eight repetitions. You can perform rows with a barbell or one arm at a time with dumbbells. Either way, they will quickly expose the weaknesses in your forearms.

Don’t be surprised if your forearms lose their grip before your back gets tired. They’re the smallest muscles in the exercise, so they will naturally burn out first. This feeling is a good thing. You must embrace that burning sensation and push the muscles past their pain threshold to get bigger forearms fast.

4. Farmer’s Carry

This is a somewhat unorthodox exercise. The farmer’s carry is a workout mainly used by powerlifters to improve their core and grip strength for other heavy lifts. The setup is simple — you grab some heavy dumbbells or load up a trap bar with lots of weight and walk back and forth.

Your entire body is under constant tension throughout the farmer’s carry, but your forearms bear most of the weight. Every muscle fiber in the lower arm is fully engaged, from your elbows to your fingertips. This workout isn’t pleasant and never gets easier, but that’s why it’s one of the best forearm workouts around.

5. Wrist Curls

The wrist curl is the king of forearm isolation workouts. This exercise should be your first choice if you want to focus solely on your forearms and give your other muscles a break. The movement is similar to a bicep curl, but you only curl your wrists upward instead of your entire lower arm. A small 5- or 10-pound dumbbell is more than enough weight.

6. Plate Pinchers

The plate pincher movement is another great forearm isolation exercise. As the name suggests, you simply grab a weight plate by the edges of your fingers and squeeze without moving your arm or wrist. Your fingers should be doing all the work. With proper form, the exercise will target the muscle fibers in your hands and lower wrists to give you balanced forearms.

7. Grip Crushers

Grip crushers are a great way to get bigger forearms without going to the gym. This pocket-sized piece of exercise equipment allows you to complete an effective forearm workout from anywhere. You just have to squeeze the two handles together until you can’t anymore.

Extra Workout Tips to Get Bigger Forearms

Doing the right exercises for bigger forearms is important, but it’s not the end-all-be-all solution. You also must have good overall weightlifting fundamentals. Small muscle groups like the forearms, abductors and adductors will lag behind if you don’t exercise with proper technique. These three extra tips will help you keep your forearms engaged so you can make progress.

1. Stop Using Straps and Chalk

Lifting straps and chalk are great resources for heavy exercises like the deadlift, but they’re counterproductive to forearm development. Their purpose is to take stress off your lower arms so you can hold the bar longer. Stop using them if you want to create full forearm stimulation. Just use your hands and rely on your grip strength.

2. Use the Proper Grip Technique

You must use the proper grip technique for each exercise. The two main techniques are the standard and thumbless grip. Standard grip applies to most exercises, but the thumbless grip is specifically meant for pulling movements like the pull-up and bent-over row. You should notice a slight strength improvement when using the right grip.

3. Squeeze the Bar

Squeeze the bar with all your might to get bigger forearms. This advice applies to all exercises that target them. Tightening your grip keeps your lower arm muscles engaged. A loose grip will leave your gains on the table. Squeeze the bar and maximize your forearm involvement.

Build a Complete Set of Arms

The biceps, triceps and shoulders are considered the big three of arm muscles, but the forearms should be right there, too. You can’t neglect the lower half to build a complete set of arms. 

These workouts for bigger forearms will help you stimulate every muscle fiber and turn those thin wrists into a big pair of guns.

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