Why it’s great: When ACE researchers measured muscle activation during several bicep moves, this simple exercise came out on top. Because you’re so focused on isolating the movement, you really tax the biceps without relying on your forearms or hands to help with the lifting and lowering. It’s not fancy, but it works.
How to do it: Sit on the end of a weight bench, with knees slightly splayed out. Holding a dumbbell in your right hand, bring your right arm in between your legs, so the back of your arm is resting on your right quad. Concentrate on engaging your bicep as you curl the weight up toward you. Pause at the top, then slowly lower it. The slower you do this move, the more effective it is. Repeat on opposite side. Do three sets of 12 reps.