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Mikey05 09-09-2007 02:51 PM

Right arm bigger than left
Here I am once again attempting to get back into lifting. I just started back up a little over a month ago and I'm progressing pretty well. I was wondering if anyone had any advice concerning what I need to do to even out my left and right arms. My right is larger b/c I'm right handed and use it the most. My arms have both grown slightly since I started lifting again but they are growing equally. Leaving my left still slightly but noticeably smaller. I've been making a good effort to use my left arm in just everyday situations when I would normally use my right. Also using the same amount of weights for both arms in my workouts. Will my arms just even out on their own from the workouts or is there anything special I should be doing?

Ross86 09-09-2007 04:42 PM

Just concentrate on your form. They will even out. Look at it this way...your weaker, smaller arm is being trained harder than your stronger arm if you're using the same weight for both. Just keep at it...I had the same problem, but my arms have evened out now. My left lat is slightly smaller than my right, but it has started to come around since I lowered the weight and concentrated on good form.

Shane2GSX 09-09-2007 04:56 PM

This was once a concern for me both with size and strength. The use of dumbells really helped even things up for me, since your forced to use equal load with each arm.

EricT 09-09-2007 04:59 PM

Unlike barbells? :)

widdoes2504 09-10-2007 04:41 AM

Take your time, train hard and smart and your arms will even out. Good luck. :weights:

ryan400 09-11-2007 11:35 AM

As stated above use good form and definitely include some dumbell work.

EricT 09-11-2007 01:11 PM

You know what when you're talking about single joint or less complex exercises (fewer joints) it's actually easier to even things out by sticking with barbells. Problem with db's for this is that there is a tendency to overcome strength deficits on the weak side with little alterations in form and little cheats like using momentum without knowing it.

For instance if you watch enough trainees doing standard types of db curls you will notice that on one side they will tend to put a lot of shoulder rotation into it and not even be aware of it. This is the kind of thing that actually leads to some of the small differences in size and strength. DB's can make it harder in that respect because you have to concentrate a lot on being perfectly strict. Especially with things like curls and tri extensions but even to some extent on bench press and press.

If you use a straight bar and keep the bar moving in parallel (duh) then you are automatically limited by the weak small arm. With simple movements like I described you can't make up for weakness in one arm by having other muscles take over. So simply using a regualar bar is pretty much an automatic way, over time, to even things out. Whereas dumbells can introduce complications.

The more complex the exercise becomes the more this relationship breaks down and thus the more useful unilateral things become.

I'm not saying DB's don't work. It's just that everybody tends to go straight to them when there is really nothing magical about them UNLESS you plan on doing MORE work on the weak side, which would be a mistake.

Ross86 09-11-2007 03:25 PM

^^ i agree 100%

iron_worker 09-15-2007 11:51 AM

I'm going go X3 on what Eric suggested. Being an engineer that just seems to make sense mechanically to me. Make the weak arm the "weak link" by forcing both to fail when one fails. Aka, barbell.

Mikey05 09-15-2007 02:49 PM

Makes sense. All I use are dumbells right now b/c thats all I have. I need to get some new bars anyways though. The ones I have now are chrome plated and the plate is peeling off and cutting up my hands. Thanks alot for the replies.

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