How to Build Triceps at Home Without Weights ASAP

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Triceps Workout Without Weights

If you think you have to go to the gym to build your triceps, think again.

While it takes a bit more creativity to work out your triceps without dumbbells or a cable machine, you’ll be surprised at some of the triceps exercises that we are going to show here.

You can do an effective triceps workout at home without weights or any equipment. We’ll show you some creative ways to hit your triceps hard even without a weight set.

You can start with your bodyweight alone to hit your triceps as hard as necessary, and we’ll show you the best bodyweight triceps exercises.

If bodyweight only is not enough and you want to build some really monstrous triceps, we’ve also included exercises that you can do with homemade weights or cheap resistance bands.

Biceps are great, but most people do more biceps exercises than triceps, but this is a mistake. Your triceps make roughly 2/3 of your upper arm size!

If you want to sculpture your arms like a Greek god, you need an effective arm home workout that targets. One that hits your triceps just as hard as your biceps.

We’ve previously talked about how you can work your biceps without weights, but now it’s time to hit those triceps.

Basic Triceps Anatomy

Before we show you our favorite no weights triceps workout, let’s talk just a few seconds about the basic anatomy of your triceps.

True to its name, the triceps is a three-pronged muscle, you can think of it has having three heads. It’s located on the back side of your upper arm, making up about two-thirds of its mass. The visible part looks kind of like a lopsided horseshoe.

Triceps act as a yin to your biceps’ yang. Where the biceps works to close your arm at the elbow, the triceps performs the opposite function, opening the elbow joint.

The three prongs of your triceps are the lateral, long and medial heads.

LATERAL HEAD
The lateral head is the bump you can see on the side of your arm when it’s hanging naturally. Overhand grips and exercises with your arms at your sides hit this head best.

LONG HEAD
The long head is the longer bump you can see at the back of your arm. You can hit this one best with your arms out in front of you or over your head.

MEDIAL HEAD
The medial head is mostly hidden behind the long head. It’s best hit with exercises that use an underhand grip.

How to Build Strong Arms at Home

In order to build the biggest, strongest arms possible, you have to work out your biceps, triceps and forearms.

Big triceps come from pushing.
To get strong biceps you need to do pulling exercises which can also be performed easily at home.

Forearm muscles are smaller but are very important for a powerful arms look. While they may be partially hit by most upper-body exercises, it’s still important to exercise your forearms directly.Building Strong Arms at Home

Biceps are more visible and often get over-worked by people who lift weights. Triceps are a bigger muscle group than biceps, though, so if you’re after bigger arms, bigger triceps will get you there faster.

Lighter exercises using your body weight, resistance bands, and DIY weights work well for developing your arms. Arm muscles are smaller than leg muscles and lift less than chest and back muscles. This makes it easier to overload them, which is the best way to build mass.

Now, if you luck to have a functional trainer cable machine at home, that’s great. That’s useful exercise equipment not just for an arm workout but also for targeting all muscle groups for a total body workout.

However, not everybody’s got the budget. You can grow big arms at home without any equipment. That is, as long as you know what you are doing and you pick the right exercises (which is why we are here).

To build strong arms at home, you have to find exercises that force your arms to do all the work. When you move your shoulders or swing your torso, your bigger muscles can play a role. Your chest, back, and legs will want to help out, but don’t let them.

Your biceps and triceps control elbow movement. Movements that flex your elbow, bringing your upper and lower arm close together, work on your biceps. Movements that extend your elbow under load hit your triceps. Try to perform all the exercises on this list with your focus on moving mainly on your elbow joint.

Don’t forget your Chest and Shoulders
Finally, we know this article is about working out your arms and triceps at home. However, it’s equally important that you also work out your chest and delts, and just like with arms, you can get a good chest workout and stronger shoulders even without weights. 

Making Your Own Weights  (optional)

The quickest way to make a DIY weight is to grab a canvas bag and fill it with the heaviest things in your pantry. Bags of beans or rice and cans of food work well, but make sure to pack them tightly so they don’t move around. When you tie the top of the bag closed, leave enough room for a solid grip.

You can also recycle plastic bottles and old socks into DIY weights. Plastic bottles with handles work well filled with sand or even just water. If you fill the middle of a sock with sand and tie the ends together, you can slide it over your hand to use as a wrist weight.

A liter bottle filled with water weighs about 2 pounds. It weighs 3 pounds if you fill it with sand. A gallon jug weighs around 8 pounds filled with water and 13 pounds filled with sand. Check out our homemade exercise equipment section for more makeshift weight ideas and other DIY projects.

BEST 12 EXERCISES FOR TRICEPS (WITHOUT WEIGHTS)

We suggest that you bookmark this page so that you can come back whenever you want to change your arms workout routine. Adding and changing exercises will keep your triceps workout interesting.

Let’s dive in and see how you can do a complete triceps workout at home without buying any weights or fancy equipment.

NARROW PUSHUPS

No triceps at home workout is complete without the good ole’ pushup. Just make sure you are using narrow grip, otherwise you’ll place more emphasis on your chest and less on your triceps. The narrower your grip, the more you’ll work your triceps.

Major Working Muscles: Triceps

Secondary Muscles: Chest, Delts

Difficulty: Medium – Hard

Type of Exercise: Bodyweight

How To

  1. Begin in the plank position. Your core should be tight and your spine straight. The narrower your hands are, the more difficult this exercise will be, and the more it will hit your triceps. Try to keep them at least slightly narrower than shoulder width.
  2.  Keep your elbows tucked alongside your body, and slowly lower yourself to the floor. Stop when you’re just above the surface without touching it.
  3. Squeeze your triceps hard at the bottom, and then slowly push yourself up again.

VARIATIONS

Diamond Pushups: You can position your hands closer together to make this exercise harder. Try doing a few reps while touching the index fingers and thumbs of your opposing hands together to form a diamond shape.

Incline/Decline Pushups: You can elevate your legs to put more weight on your triceps or elevate your arms for less weight.

Weighted Pushups: Try doing a few with a DIY weight on your back.

DIPS

Major Working Muscles: Triceps

Secondary Muscles: Chest, Delts

Difficulty: Medium – Hard

Type of ExerciseBodyweight with a sturdy low surface like a bench or chair

How To

  1. Sit on the edge of your bench or other sturdy low surface. Grip it close to your body on each side with each hand. Your feet should be extended out in front of you, resting on the floor.
  2. Use your triceps to hold your body off the bench so only your hands and feet are touching a surface.
  3. Dip your body slowly to the ground with most of your weight on your triceps. Stop when your elbows are at a 90-degree angle.
  4. Squeeze your triceps hard, and then push your body back to the starting position.

NOTES & TIPS
You can make this movement harder by elevating your legs on another chair or placing some homemade weight in your lap.

PLANK UPS

Major Working Muscles: Triceps, Delts

Secondary Muscles: Chest, Core, Glutes

Difficulty: Medium

Type of ExerciseBodyweight

How To

  1. Use a plank as your starting position. Keep your arms straight and your hands beneath your shoulders.
  2. With your weight on your left hand, slowly place your entire right forearm and hand on the ground. Your elbow should end up where your hand started.
  3. Shift your weight to your right forearm, and slowly lower your left forearm to the floor. Your weight should now be balanced on your forearms and feet.
  4. Reverse the movement. Put your right hand under your right shoulder, and start pushing up. Then put your left hand under your left shoulder, and finish pushing up until you’re back at your starting position.
  5. Alternate leading hands either every other rep or every other set.

NOTES & TIPS
Try to keep your hips level and your core tight the whole time.

PLANK ROTATION

Major Working Muscles: Triceps

Secondary Muscles: Chest, Delts

Difficulty: Easy – Medium

Type of ExerciseBodyweight

How To

  1. Start in plank position with your feet together. Lock your elbows, and keep your body in a tight straight line.
  2. Pick one arm up, and rotate your whole body sideways until that arm is pointing at the sky. The other arm should still be anchored to the ground. Leave your feet in place, and keep your torso straight.
  3. Hold for 10 seconds with your weight on the triceps of the lowered arm.
  4. Rotate the raised arm back down.
  5. Repeat the movement with the other arm by rotating in the opposite direction.

NOTES & TIPS
If this one is too hard, you can start in a forearm plank position with your forearms on the ground instead of your hands.

L-SIT

Major Working Muscles: Triceps, Glutes

Difficulty: Hard

Type of ExerciseBodyweight

How To

  1. Sit on the ground in an L position with your legs and back straight.
  2. Put your hands on the ground just outside of your hips.
  3. Keep your glutes and core tight as you squeeze your triceps to lift your entire body off the ground. Your legs should be straight with your feet off the ground if possible.
  4. Squeeze, hold for a few seconds, then lower.

NOTES & TIPS
This is a god-mode exercise, so don’t worry if it’s too hard at the beginning. You can make it easier by leaving one or both feet on the ground at first.

DIVE BOMBER PUSHUP

Major Working Muscles: Triceps, Chest, Delts

Secondary Muscles: Glutes, Hamstrings, Quads

Difficulty: Medium

Type of ExerciseBodyweight

How To

  1. Start with your toes and palms on the ground. Your body should be in the shape of an inverted V with your arms and legs extended and your hips raised.
  2. The idea is to move your torso in a U-shape leading with your head. To do this, you need to keep your hips up while bending your elbows slowly to bring your chest down. That’s the first half of the U.
  3. Continue the U-shape by straightening your arms to push your chest up and forward while bringing your hips down. Try to draw a smooth half circle in the air with your body.
  4. Reverse the half circle as smoothly as possible until you’re back in the original inverted-V position.

NOTES & TIPS
If you’re familiar with yoga, this exercise moves from a Downward Dog to an Upward Dog position and back.T

TRICEPS BOW

Major Working Muscles: Triceps

Secondary Muscles: Lats

Difficulty: Easy – Medium

Type of ExerciseBodyweight with some kind of sturdy hip-level surface

How To

  1. Start in an inclined plank position with your feet on the ground and your hands gripping the edge of a sturdy table or counter at about hip height. Your arms should be extended and your hands about shoulder-width apart.
  2. Bend your elbows slowly to bring your head just below your hands. Make sure your elbows stay tucked.
  3. Squeeze your triceps to extend your elbows and bring your head back to the starting position.

NOTES & TIPS
If this exercise is too hard, bring your feet closer to the table or countertop. If it’s too easy, move them farther away.E

TRICEPS TOWEL EXTENSIONS

Major Working Muscles: Triceps

Difficulty: Easy (You control the difficulty level)

Type of Exercise: Resistance using a towel.

How To

  1. Hold a towel vertically behind your head. Your hands should grasp opposite ends of the towel with one arm up and one arm down.
  2. Provide resistance with the lowered arm as you extend the elbow of the raised arm over your head. Leave both upper arms in place, one pointing up and one pointing down. Move only your elbows and forearms. Keep your mind in the triceps of the raised arm.
  3. Pull the towel back down to the starting position.
  4. Finish the reps on one side, and then switch arms to work out the other triceps.

VARIATION
You can do this with a sheet by tucking one end under your feet. You won’t be able to extend your raised elbow, but you can push with your triceps as hard as possible for a few seconds, and then release.

SIDE LYING TRICEPS EXTENSIONS

Major Working Muscles: Triceps

Secondary Muscles: Obliques

Difficulty: Medium

Type of Exercise: Bodweight

How To

  1. Lay on your side on the floor. Lift your arm closest to the floor, and hug your opposite shoulder. Lower the other arm, and place its hand on the ground in front of you. That’s the arm you’ll use to lift your body.
  2. Extend the elbow of your grounded hand, and squeeze your triceps to lift your torso sideways off the ground. Don’t swing or help out with your obliques.
  3. Lower your body back down.
  4. Once you tire out one arm, turn over, and tire out the other one.

NOTES & TIPS
If you want to make this one harder, lift your feet off the ground.Tr

TRICEP KICKBACK WITH RESISTANCE BAND

Major Working Muscles: Triceps

Secondary MusclesErector Spinae (isometric)

Difficulty: Easy-Hard (depending on resistance band used)

Type of ExerciseUsing resistance bands

How To

  1. Stand on the very middle of a resistance band. Bend over at the waist, keeping your back and neck straight and your knees slightly bent. Grab one end of the band with each hand.
  2. Start with your upper arms parallel to your bent over torso, your elbows at a 90-degree angle and your forearms pointing at the floor. Keep your upper body solid and your elbows tucked into your core as you slowly extend your arms backward. Focus on using your triceps to stretch out that resistance band until your arms are straight out behind you.
  3. Squeeze hard at the end of the movement, and then reverse it till your elbows are back at a 90-degree angle.

NOTES & TIPS
Resistance bands feel easy at the beginning of the movement and get progressively harder as you stretch them more.
If you need more resistance, try holding the band closer to the middle.
You can wrap the extra ends around your hands.

TRICEP PUSHDOWN WITH RESISTANCE BAND

Major Working Muscles: Triceps

Difficulty: Easy – Hard (depending on resistance band used)

Type of ExerciseResistance band with a sturdy elevated surface

How To

  1. Anchor your resistance band to a towel hook, the top of a door or another sturdy elevated surface. The two ends should be dangling down evenly.
  2. Face toward the anchored band, and grasp each end in one of your hands. Your upper arms should be parallel to your upper body. Your elbows should be close to your torso and bent at a 90-degree angle with your forearms out in front of you.
  3. Use your triceps to push your hands down until your elbows are extended. Only your forearms should move.
  4. Hold for a second, focusing on your triceps, and then return to the original position.

NOTES & TIPS
You can feel this even more in your triceps if you keep your hands close together at the top of the movement and spread them slightly at the bottom.

OVERHEAD PRESS WITH RESISTANCE BAND

Major Working Muscles: Triceps

Difficulty: Easy – Hard (depending on resistance band used)

Type of ExerciseResistance band

How To

  1. Stand on the middle of your band with one foot. Step forward with the other one. Hold each end of the band in each hand, and extend your arms over your head. Your elbows should be facing forward, not sideways.
  2. Slowly bend your arms behind your head. Keep your upper arms pointing up and your elbows facing forward.
  3. When your hands are at about ear level, squeeze your triceps to push your arms back up over your head.

NOTES & TIPS
Make this exercise harder by holding the band closer to the center.

Conclusion

We’ve included lots of different triceps exercises. You can select 3 to 4 exercises and switch exercises every once in a while. That will keep your home triceps workout interesting and not boring. You can do most of the exercises without equipment.

You can make some exercises harder by using makeshift weights from stuff you already have at home. Using resistance bands is another option. They are cheap, add variety, and make the exercises more challenging.

Your body adapts quickly to exercise stress, so it’s essential to change things regularly to keep your muscles working hard.

You can maximize your gains by throwing in a new exercise or routine every month or so. Make sure to get plenty of rest and recovery time between workouts.

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