Most guys have a hard enough time just finding a few minutes in the day to work out, let alone making time for exercises, like the arm bar, that essentially just make you better at other exercises.
But unlike the bench press and other bro favourites that many guys default to the moment they enter the weight room, the arm bar serves a dual benefit: It can drastically improve your posture outside the gym, and it can actually reverse some of the damage we do to our bodies by sitting down at a desk all day long.
Whether you’ve never heard of the arm bar or up until now you thought we were talking about the popular mixed martial arts submission move (we’re not), we’ve got you covered.
Watch the video above to see Equinox trainer Nyree Brown perform the arm bar with perfect form.
One of the main things this move does is allow the scapula to retract, making way for the shoulder to move over the rib cage and toward the spine, effectively reversing the seated posture we spend most of our days stuck in.
Do this move regularly and you’ll notice not only improved posture during the day, but better shoulder stability and range of motion in the weight room.
While performing this movement, you want to make sure your arm remains perpendicular to the floor and your hips are driving the motion. Your hand should be directly above your shoulder, which should be stacked directly above your other shoulder.
Brown suggests keeping your eye on the kettlebell throughout the movement.
“For beginners, start with a lighter weight, just to understand what the shoulder feels like with the weight,” she says.
Start with five reps on each side to get you comfortable with the movement, and then graduate to a 30-second hold to increase time under tension and really work on that stability.
By Dean Stattmann