Triceps by Doing Skull Crushers

Skull crushers are a great triceps-toning exercise. Whether you are an amateur bodybuilder or just looking to tone your arms, this exercise deserves a spot in any upper-body or triceps workout.

Unlike other triceps exercises that target multiple muscle groups, skull crushers isolate the triceps by targeting only the elbow joint. This makes them ideal for those who do not have the shoulder mobility needed to perform other triceps exercises. Build Insane Triceps by Doing Skull Crushers – Laz Tymoff

How to Do

Skull Crushers are an excellent exercise to target the triceps and can be performed with a dumbbell, barbell, curl-bar, or kettlebells. Lie on a flat bench and hold your weight (a barbell or dumbbell in both hands). Position the weight above your head with elbows shoulder-width apart. Slowly lower the weight towards your forehead, focusing on controlling the eccentric (lowering) phase to reach full triceps stretch and get maximum muscle stimulation. Avoid lowering the weight too quickly as this reduces time under tension and can lead to excessive strain on your elbow joints.

Focus on squeezing your triceps to powerfully contract the arms as they extend back behind your head. Feeling the muscles stretch and contract fully in this peak contraction is a good indication that you have completed the movement correctly. For a greater challenge, try performing this exercise with your head on a decline bench to increase the difficulty of the movement and place more emphasis on the lateral head of your triceps.


Skull crushers are a powerful triceps isolation exercise that can make an excellent addition to any upper-body or triceps-specific routine. They’re also known as lying triceps extensions and, despite their intimidating name, they don’t require much setup or skill to perform.

The most important aspect of the movement is to control the eccentric (lowering) phase by bending at the elbows, rather than flaring out. This will help reduce stress on the shoulders, prevent injury and promote better triceps development.

It’s also important to find the right grip width. It’s common to see lifters with their hands too far apart, which will put too much tension on the shoulder muscles and take away from the exercise’s effectiveness. In addition, it’s critical to avoid speeding up the movement by rushing through each rep. This will also increase the risk of dropping weight on the head or face, which can lead to serious injuries. It’s also a good idea to start with lighter weight and work up to heavier loads.


Skull crushers can be dangerous if done incorrectly. This is because they can stress the elbow joints and cause them to flare up in pain, leading to injury. In addition, the movement can also aggravate the shoulder joint and cause it to become strained.

To minimize the risk of injury, beginners should start with a lighter weight and perform the exercise at a controlled pace. This will help to prevent injury and ensure that the triceps are working properly.

For beginners, it’s recommended to use an EZ bar or dumbbells rather than a barbell because the latter can be difficult to control. This will enable you to focus more on the triceps and less on your shoulders and upper arms, which can cause the muscles to tire quickly. Moreover, it’s essential to control the movement during both the eccentric (lowering) and concentric (pressing) phases of the exercise. Otherwise, momentum can speed up the movement, causing it to be dangerous.


Skull crushers are a tried-and-true exercise for building triceps muscle, and they can be incorporated into most lifter’s workouts. Incorporating skull crushers into your workouts can trigger hypertrophy and enhance muscular endurance by stimulating cell-swelling within the triceps. This results in your arms becoming visibly bigger, a powerful motivational tool to keep training.

For those with shoulder or elbow problems that make it difficult to lie on a bench, the skull crusher can also be performed in a standing position or with an EZ bar. Additionally, if you don’t like the feeling of your elbows flaring out during skull crushers, try performing the movement using a close-grip bench press variation by narrowing your grip width to activate more of your triceps muscles. This can be done using a barbell, dumbbells, or a cable machine. Regardless of the variation, the important thing is to perform skull crushers properly and safely. This will ensure optimal results over time.