Dumbbell curls are similar to barbell curls except, well, you're using dumbbells, and instead of working both biceps at the same time, you have the option of lifting both simultaneously or alternately. Since alternating gives the muscle time to rest as the other arm is working, we prefer to work both arms together.
Dumbbell curl start/finish position. Dumbbell curl midrange position.
Here is how you properly perform a dumbbell curl:
1. Stand (or sit) with a dumbbell in each hand, palms facing inward.
2. Slowly bend your elbow. As you do, begin to twist your wrists so your palms are facing upward.
3. Stop just short of your shoulders.
4. Slowly straighten your elbow. As you do, begin to twist your wrists so that your palms are facing inward again.
5. Return to your initial starting position.
The following is a list of don'ts:
> Shrug your shoulders as you raise the dumbbells.
>- Rock back and forth or arch your back. Again, decrease the weight if you find this happening.
The following is a list of do's:
> Keep your elbows pinned in close to your body.
> Keep your knees slightly bent if standing, and keep your abdomen tight whether you are standing or sitting, to protect your back.
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The use of dumbbells gives you a much more comprehensive strengthening effect because the workout engages your stabilizer muscles, in addition to the muscle you may be pin-pointing. Without all of the belts and artificial stabilizers of a machine, you also engage your core muscles, which are your body's natural stabilizers.