Women Can Tone Their Upper Body with These Simple Exercises

Looking to tone up to show off? Or just want to de-jiggle your arms? These five exercises are meant to work all the muscles of your upper body — chest, shoulders, biceps, triceps, and back. By working all these muscles together, you’ll build a better upper body as a whole.

5 Bent-Over Rows

Rows are the perfect exercise to work both your triceps and shoulders. The key to this exercise is squeezing your shoulder blades together at the top to engage your trapezius muscle (upper back), too. How to do bent-over rows: With a 5 to 10-pound dumbbell in each hand, bend forward at the hips until your chest is parallel to the floor and your back is straight. Let you arms hang directly out from your shoulders. Next, bend your elbows and bring the weights toward your chest, stopping when your elbows reach waist level. Straighten your arms back to the starting position.

4 Shoulder Presses

Don’t forget to tone those shoulders. Having strong shoulders are the foundation for sexy, sculpted arms, and strong arms decrease your risk of injury while lifting or carrying heavy objects. How to do shoulder presses: Hold a 5- to 10-pound dumbbell in each hand at shoulder height with your elbows pointed out to the side and palms facing forward. Straighten your arms and raise the weights over your head without locking your elbows or shrugging your shoulders at the top. Keep the weights directly over your shoulders and lower back down to the start. It might help to think of lifting a barbell to help you maintain proper form.

3 Chair Dips

If biceps curls are the yin of your workout, dips are the yang. Strong biceps plus toned triceps equals sexy arms. All you need is a chair, ledge, or stair, and you can do a few reps nearly anywhere. Even when watching TV. How to do chair dips: Sit on a chair or ledge with your hands supporting you by your side, fingers facing the edge. Move your butt off the chair so that it’s over the floor and you body weight is supported only by your hands and feet. Your knees should be at a 90° angle and your thighs parallel to the floor. Bend your elbows back so that you’re lowering yourself toward the floor. Straighten your arms back to the starting position without locking your elbows.

2 Biceps Curls

There’s not better exercise for targeting your biceps than curls. And depending on your grip or stance, you can change the muscles they emphasize. Try hammer curls, preacher curls, or concentration curls for variety. How to do biceps curls: Stand holding a 5 to 10-pound dumbbell in each hand with your palms facing forward. Bend your elbows to raise the weights to your shoulders and slowly lower back down to the start without locking your elbows. Keep your elbows at your side throughout the range of motion.

1 Push-Ups

They may be the bane of your workout, but there’s no better exercise for your upper body. If you’re a beginner, you can do modified push-ups from your knees or incline push-ups with your hands supported on a step or bench. How to do push ups: Start in the plank position — with your stomach facing the ground, lift your body weight off the ground and support yourself with just your hands and feet. Your hands should be directly your shoulders. Bend your elbows back toward your sides and lower your chest to the ground, keeping your entire body in a straight line from your head to your feet. Push back up to the start to complete one rep.

Now that you know have the keys to toned arms and a sculpted back, you’ll want to spread the word. And for even more exercises, you can get muscle group specific workouts for your biceps, triceps, shoulders, and chest.
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