31 January 2024


Man performing bicep curls with cable machine. The photo captures the curl of the elbow phase of the exercise.

Bicep Curls Leaning Forward on Bench

This variation of bicep curls, also called Spider curls, is a popular exercise for targeting the biceps and building upper arm strength. This exercise is performed by leaning forward against a bench, which prevents cheating and isolates the biceps. Spider curls are an effective way to develop the biceps and add definition to the arms. In this article, we will explore the benefits of spider curls, proper form and technique, different variations, and alternatives to this exercise.


Proper Form and Technique for Spider Curls


To perform spider curls with proper form and technique, follow these steps:

    • Start by positioning yourself face down on an incline bench, leaning forward with your chest against the pad.
    • Hold a dumbbell in each hand, palms facing up, and let your arms hang straight down towards the floor.
    • Without moving your upper arms, contract your biceps and curl the weights up towards your shoulders.
    • Pause for a moment at the top of the movement, squeezing your biceps.
    • Slowly lower the weights back down to the starting position, maintaining control and tension in your biceps.

Remember to keep your elbows stationary throughout the exercise and focus on using your biceps to lift the weights. By maintaining proper form and technique, you'll maximize the benefits of spider curls for bicep development.

Spider Curls Benefits


Spider curls are highly effective for bicep development. By leaning forward against a bench and isolating the biceps, spider curls engage the muscles in a unique way. This exercise specifically targets the biceps, helping to build strength, size, and definition in the upper arms. Spider curls also allow for strict form, reducing the risk of cheating and promoting proper muscle activation. Incorporating spider curls into your workout routine can lead to noticeable bicep growth and improved arm aesthetics.

3D character performing bicep curls with barbell, marked bicep muscles, wearing a cap, highly detailed muscle maps.

One of the major advantages of spider curls is that they take the worry out of maintaining proper form. This way, users can focus solely on the bicep muscle. And with the body properly supported, the risk of injury is significantly reduced. Which also makes them perfect for beginners. Spider curls are particularly effective for building mass and strength in the biceps. Whether the objective is to bulk up or tone arms, spider curls can help with both those goals. 


To incorporate spider curls into your workout routine, consider the following tips:

  • Start with the right weight. Choose a weight that challenges you but allows you to maintain proper form throughout the exercise.
  • Prioritize proper form: Focus on keeping your upper arms perpendicular to the ground and your elbows fixed in place throughout the movement.
  • Mix up your grip: Try using different grip positions, such as supine or pronated, to engage different areas of the biceps.
  • Vary the sets and repetitions. Experiment with different rep ranges and set structures to prevent plateaus and continue challenging your muscles.
  • Include spider curls in your arm day: Incorporate spider curls into your arm-focused workouts, pairing them with exercises like hammer curls and preacher curls for a well-rounded bicep routine.
  • Don't forget about recovery. Allow your muscles adequate rest and recovery between spider curl workouts to avoid overtraining and promote muscle growth.