Home » How To Perform Tricep Dips Benefits, Techniques And Variations

How To Perform Tricep Dips Benefits, Techniques And Variations

Tricep Dips

When it comes to building strong arms, most people don’t work on their tricep muscles as they do on their biceps. If you want to grow your arms, train your triceps as they are bigger than your bicep muscles. Training your triceps will make your arm look more muscular and toned.

The best exercise for training your tricep muscles is the tricep dip exercise. This exercise requires no equipment and contains minimum risk of injury.
Tricep dips is a bodyweight strength and endurance training exercise which works primarily for your tricep and forearm muscles. This exercise is performed using your wrist hence challenging your grip strength. The major advantage of tricep dips is that this exercise target’s most of the biggest muscles present in your upper body including the three tricep heads (the long, medial and lateral).
The muscles worked during this exercise are:

1) Pectoralis Major:

The pectoralis major is the biggest muscle present in your chest. This muscle is present above the pectoralis minor muscle and is important for the movement and functionality of your shoulder joints. Tricep dip is a pressing movement which activates these muscle. While performing the tricep dips, the wider the distance between your hands more it’ll work for your pectoralis muscles.

2) Triceps:

The tricep is the biggest muscle present in your upper arm. This muscle is made up of three parts: lateral, medial, and long head. Tricep muscles help in the extension of your forearm muscles and elbow joints, It also provides support to your shoulder muscle. According to many studies, the tricep dip is the most effective exercise for strengthening the tricep muscles.

3) Latissimus Dorsi:

The latissimus dorsi is the largest muscle present in your upper body. This muscle is found on the sides of your back and is responsible for the flexion, extension, and internal rotation of your shoulder joint. The latissimus dorsi connects the upper arm, spine, and hips to provide support and balance to the overall body. While performing tricep dips, the lat muscle is activated to stabilize the movie.

4) Deltoids:

The deltoid is a triangle-shaped muscle that is present in your shoulders. Its name is derived from the Greek letter delta which is in the shape of a triangle. The deltoid is the biggest muscle present in your shoulder, supporting the shoulder joint. Training of these muscles is important as most of the shoulder activities are performed using these muscles. While doing tricep dips, these muscles are engaged to support the movement.

5) Trapezius:

The trapezius is a long paired muscle that is found on your back. This muscle covers your collar bone and extends from your neck to your lower back. This muscle is responsible for the movement of the scapulae and spine. Trapezius muscles also protect your neck from injuries by absorbing the tension generated. This muscle is used in most of the pressing movements like tricep dips for stability.

6) Forearm:

The forearm is the muscle present between your elbows and wrist. Strong forearm muscles are great for lifting heavy weights and for performing different pressing movements more effectively. This muscle is responsible for the movement of your wrist and hand. In tricep dips, the forearm muscles work as a stabilizer.


1) Can Be Performed Anywhere:

The tricep dip is performed using your body weight which means that it doesn’t require any equipment. You just need an object high enough to perform this exercise like a chair or bench, which are easily available in most places.

2) Strengthens Your Arms:

The tricep dips not only work for your triceps but also activates your forearm and bicep muscles. Doing high repetitions of this exercise can increase the size of your arms, making them stronger and toned.

3) Burns Excessive Fat:

Most of the fat in your arms gets stored in the tricep region so by doing tricep dips you can burn that excess fat. Adding this exercise to your workout while following a weight loss diet will increase your metabolism and hence burn a large number of calories.

4) Works On Your Body Balance:

While performing tricep dips your whole body is lifted off the ground and is only supported by your hands and heels, this makes your body struggle to maintain your balance therefore improving it.

How To Perform:

1) Start this exercise by sitting on a flat bench or chair. Your hands should be shoulder-width apart, holding the bench. Extend your legs with a slight fold in your knees.
2) Lift your torso from the bench and move slightly forward till you’re away enough from the edge to easily perform the movement. while balancing your body on your heels, lower your torso till your elbows are parallel to the ground. Inhale while lowering your body.
3) Hold the position, raise your back to the starting position by pressing your palms. Exhale while lifting your body. This is one repetition of the tricep dip exercise.
4) You can start performing 12-15 repetitions of this exercise in 3 sets and can increase the number of repetitions and sets when you’ll build enough strength.

Common Mistakes:

1) High Shoulder:

Keep your shoulders down and relaxed during the movement. Keeping your shoulders up will generate tension in them which can result in an injury.

2) Lowering Your Body Too Low:

You have to lower your body till your hips are very close to the ground and your elbows are parallel with the ground. Lowering your body too low will not target your triceps effectively.

3) Leaning Forward:

Try to keep your body stable in tricep dips. You can lean forward while doing chest dips as leaning forward will target your chest more than your triceps.

4) Locking Your Elbows:

Locking your elbows at the top while lifting your body can increase tension in your elbow joint which can result in an injury.


Tricep Dips


1) Cross Bench Dips:

The cross bench dip is a variation of traditional dip exercise in which your feet are also elevated along with your upper body. You need two benches or chairs for this exercise, placing one for your hands and another for your feet. Elevating your feet activates your triceps, chest, and shoulders better therefore increasing the difficulty. This exercise is mostly performed as a burnout set at the end of an arm workout.

2) Assisted Dip Machine:

The assisted dip machine is a weight training variation of the standard dip exercise. This exercise is performed on a dip machine, which can be found in a gym or fitness center. While doing this movement you have the freedom to choose the weight according to your strength. Performing dips with extra weight will strengthen your triceps, chest, forearm, and grip strength better than normal dips. If you’re a beginner then you should first master the normal dips before doing the assisted dip machine.

3) Weighted Dips:

The weighted dips is a weight training advance variation of the traditional dip exercise. This exercise is performed on two parallel bars along with a hanging weight. The primary focus of this exercise is on your chest, shoulders, and tricep muscles. Adding weights to the normal dip exercise makes the movement very difficult for beginners therefore due to its intensity, this movement is mostly performed by athletes or people with intermediate or advanced fitness levels.

4) Dip To Leg Raise:

The dip to leg raise is a dynamic variation of standard dip exercise in which you perform a dip and then while lifting your body, you raise your legs to perform leg raise. This exercise works for your triceps, chest, and abdominal muscles. This movement is great for athletes as it develops explosive strength and agility in your body. The dip to leg raise is also performed in many HIIT (high-intensity interval training) workouts.

5) Ring Dips:

The ring dip is a variation of the standard dip exercise in which you perform the movement using two hanging rings. The rings are better than the parallel bars if you’re focusing on your chest and shoulder muscles. This is an advanced level exercise as the risk of injuries is higher. You need to work on your form and strength before attempting ring dips.

6) One Arm Dips:

The one-arm dip is a bodyweight strength training exercise that is similar to the normal dip exercise but is a lot difficult as you’re balancing your body only on one hand and one leg. While doing this movement both your upper body and lower body muscles are engaged. The one-arm dip is an advanced level exercise as it requires a lot of strength to balance your body.

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