How Long Should Biceps Rest?

One of the most common questions asked about big arm training is, how long should biceps rest? Your biceps are a relatively small body part in relation to your chest, legs and back, so they don’t need as much work as the bigger muscle groups.

What your biceps do need is rest as they get worked not only when you do a bicep workout, but they also get trained every time you train your back.
Without adequate rest time, your biceps won’t get any bigger or stronger so resting your biceps is as important as training your biceps.



In most cases, the answer to the question how long should your biceps rest, is for one week after your biceps workout. The only other time you should train using your biceps is when you do your weekly back workout. Your biceps may get a little bit of work when you train your other upper body parts, but that stress on the biceps is only minor.


To grow huge biceps, the top pro bodybuilders usually only train their biceps once per week, but that one workout is at 100% intensity. Some pro bodybuilders will train their biceps twice per week, but the second workout is usually only at 70-80% intensity as your biceps are easily prone to overtraining if they get worked too often.


The ideal workout for the biceps for beginner to intermediate bodybuilders and fitness athletes should consist of 6-9 sets in total. Choose two exercises for 3 sets each or three exercises for 3 sets each if you feel up to it.

Remember, it’s about training your biceps to the absolute failure point with the highest level of intensity you can handle using a weight that you can lift always using good form. If you get lazy with your form and start swinging your back to get the weights up, you may end up with an injury or limit your potential growth.

Don’t worry about what other trainers are lifting or doing in the gym, do what you need to do to stimulate growth in your biceps and only increase the weight when you’re ready but never sacrifice good form by trying to build your ego instead of your biceps.

Everyone wants to lift bigger weights, but only do that when your body is ready. A high-intensity biceps workout using proper form for 6-10 reps per set is much better and more productive than a biceps workout where you need to swing your back to lift the weight.

Only increase the weight when you can still keep your back straight whether you’re using free weights or cables. If you can train with super high intensity, never miss your scheduled workouts and get adequate rest in between workouts you will definitely grow big arms.


One more thing that will stimulate huge muscle growth in your biceps and all the other muscles in your body is to take a full week off training every 8-12 weeks. Nobody likes to take a full week off, but from experience, every time I take a full week off training my whole body responds with a sudden surge in strength and overall muscle mass.

Remember resting is just as important as training. You stimulate growth when you train, but you do all your growing while your body is resting. So let your biceps rest so you can see more gains.


Anthony Hill

When you put together the sum total of my 30 years of bodybuilding training, the contests, the vast array of diets I have experimented (tortured) myself with as well as the experiences I have been through with various training partners in the gyms I have trained in all over the world, it’s been a great ride and I wouldn’t change it for anything. Over the years, I have been fortunate enough to be able to do lots of personal training for private clients alongside my day job. For a few years during my 30’s, I moved to Asia and worked as the Fitness Manager and head personal trainer at one of Thailand’s leading gyms in Bangkok. Learn More

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