What Are Lying Triceps Extensions? Tips, Technique, Correct Form, Benefits and Common Mistakes

Guide to lying triceps extensions. (Image via Pexels/Photo by Andrea Piacquadio)
Guide to lying triceps extensions. (Image via Pexels/Photo by Andrea Piacquadio)

Lying triceps extension is an exercise that allows you to isolate the triceps and focus on the lateral head and long head.

It’s extremely important to work on the tricep muscles if you want well-developed upper arms. The triceps make up the biggest portion of the upper arm, so developing them is important for the overall appearance.

Correct Form of Doing Lying Triceps Extension

You can do lying triceps extension with a barbell, dumbbells and cables. The form behind all the variations remains the same. Let’s discuss what the correct form is.


You’ll need a bench for this exercise. All you need to do is lay down flat on the bench with a pair of dumbbells. Hold the dumbbells, and extend your arms towards the ceiling, ensuring your elbows are locked. To do the exercise, bend your forearms backwards towards your forehead, but keep your elbows locked and stable.

Take the dumbbells till your forehead, and push them back upwards. When you’re pushing the weight upwards, use the triceps to do the same. It’s absolutely important to maintain a strong muscle-mind connection to ensure your wrist, chest, forearms or biceps do not take over.

Tips to Do Lying Triceps Extension

If you’ve never done this exercise before, it’s advisable to begin with a light weight. That'll help you understand the movement and allow you to develop a muscle-mind connection.


When you develop a muscle-mind connection with a lighter weight, it’s easier to do the same with heavier weights. Next, try to keep your elbows as stable as possible. Ideally, your elbows shouldn’t flare outwards. If that happens, you’re putting yourself at risk of injury.

Benefits of Doing Lying Triceps Extension

First, this exercise enables you to isolate the tricep muscles. It’s important to have isolation exercises in your workout routine to boost muscle growth and endurance.

Second, tricep extensions improve flexibility and range of motion. Third, extensions not only help the triceps but allow you to stabilise your shoulders.

Moreover, strong triceps help with other activities, such as swimming, throwing a ball and others that require heavy arm movement.

Common Mistakes During Lying Triceps Extension

When you do extensions, there are a few common mistakes you need to be aware of to avail its optimum benefits:

Starting too heavy

As mentioned above, it’s better to start off with a lighter weight before moving to heavier weights. It’s essential to understand what the movement is and how it affects your triceps. The best way to do that is by using lighter weights.

Unstable elbows

Your elbows need to be stable during the exercise. They cannot sway backward or forward or flare outwards.


You can use a partner to assist initially to help you keep your elbows stable during the movement.

Bottom Line

This tricep extension is one of the best exercises to do if you want to boost strength and muscle endurance. In fact, once you understand the exercise and its form, you should try its variations with barbells (straight and EZ-bar) and cables.

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Edited by Bhargav
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