Zottman flexion: exercise technique

Such a muscle group as the forearm is a problem area for many athletes. The fact is that standard exercises on the hands practically do not affect this area. Moreover, the forearm is specially trying not to burden. This is due to the fact that, being a relatively weak muscle group, the forearm quickly gets tired, and the target muscles do not get the proper load. But it needs to be developed, and there are at least two reasons for this. First, the body must be developed in proportion. And secondly, the stronger the forearm, the stronger the grip. Well, without a strong grip in men's sports, there is nothing to do.

Many have noticed that with simple movers, the forearm looks much stronger than that of professional athletes. The fact is that in ordinary training an athlete acts on a given muscle group only with the help of flexion and extension of the hand, as well as compression of the palm. However, the forearm also has such a function as rotation, and a considerable part of its bundles is precisely for this purpose. So it turns out that someone who performs a variety of power work better pumps his forearm than a regular in the gym. It is in the rotation of the hand that the whole salt of the exercise lies, which we will talk about today.

Zottman's flexion is an old exercise, which few people now use in their training, but in vain. It allows you to work out both biceps and forearm. Let's find out how this exercise can be useful in modern bodybuilding.

Zottman Bends

general characteristics

This exercise, as already mentioned, trains immediately the muscles of the shoulder and forearm. This is achieved due to supination and pronation of the hand. Exercise pursues rather specific tasks, so not all athletes use it in their training. In addition to working out the muscles, it helps to strengthen grip and improve neural communication. The technique is easy to understand, but difficult for the muscles. Therefore, at first it is recommended not to rush with an increase in the weight of dumbbells. By the way, Georg Zottman trained with dumbbells weighing 50 kg. But before reaching such indicators, you need to master the technique.

Zottaman flexes are usually performed at the end of a biceps or back workout , and also as a warm-up before working out the biceps. They are suitable for athletes of any level. For beginners, the exercise is interesting in training neural communication and its versatility. And experienced weightlifters choose it to improve the functional qualities of the hands, which increases strength in deadlift and bench press.

Dumbbell 3 kg

What muscles work

At first glance, this exercise looks like a simple biceps curl. However, if you look closely, there is some difference in it, due to which it is possible to load more muscles. As a result, when performed correctly, Zottman's bends allow you to work out the following muscles:

1. The brachioradialis muscle (brachioradialis).

2. Radial flexor of the wrist.

3. Finger flexors.

4. Round pronator.

5. Biceps (long and short heads).

At each stage of movement, one or another muscle receives a load. By the way, the invisible brachioradialis muscle, when performed correctly, will make itself felt by burning in the shoulder area. If it is, then everything is done right.

Execution technique

So, before you start pumping your hands, you need to take the starting position: pick up dumbbells, stand straight, straighten your arms, press your elbows to the body, and turn your palms to each other. It's time to start bending. With exhalation, the arms are bent. In the very first stage of the movement of the palm you need to turn up. At the top point, you need to pause for the biceps to get the maximum load.

Starting position

Now you can proceed to the next stage - lowering the dumbbells. First you need to turn the wrists so that the palms look down. Gently, with a breath, the hands return to their original position. That's basically it.

Common mistakes

As a rule, when performing Zottman's bends, athletes make the following mistakes: ignoring the warm-up, improper breathing, and heavy dumbbell weight.

It is important to remember that exhalation is done at the top of the amplitude. Do not make it down or in the direction of travel. This can make you breathless and make your workout harder.

As for the warm-up, before proceeding with the Zottman bends, you need to make a simple complex for warming up the muscles of the hands. It can be either ordinary rotations or work with light dumbbells (bench press, rotations, stretching).

Georg Zottman

Useful Tips

The elbow flexor will work much better if at the top, when the dumbbells are at chest level, slightly move the elbow joint down. When you feel very tired, you can put off the dumbbells and shake hands intensely for several seconds. Such a simple manipulation will remove the load from the fingers, and you can continue to bend Zottman.

Rotate the brushes while raising and lowering very carefully. The muscles responsible for the rotation of the forearm stabilize these movements well. However, if you make a breakthrough, they may suffer. It is recommended to do this exercise at the end of the workout, as it greatly stresses the shoulder joint. It is important to choose the right weight for dumbbells. If 12 repetitions are given to you without problems, the weight is small. It is necessary that at the 8th repetition there would no longer be strength.

The most important thing in any workout is technique. Therefore, if you can’t do everything right with both hands at once, try to alternate hands, focusing on each of them.

Biceps Curl


This exercise is considered completely safe, but if you neglect the technique, then problems may arise. The first thing to remember is that flexion is done smoothly using muscle strength. Any jerks are unacceptable. Otherwise, the shoulder joint, which is quite weak for many athletes, can get an undesirable load.

In addition, to protect the joint, you need to work with a comfortable weight. Of course, for each athlete it can be different. But first, it is recommended to take 3 kg dumbbells. Let you not be confused by such a low weight. It is needed in order to hone the technique and feel the work of the muscles.

The back should be motionless throughout the movement. Do not try to lift the dumbbells by force of the back. There will be no sense in such a performance. In addition, for those with a weak back, this can be dangerous.


The muscles of the hands are small groups that can have two functions: flexion or extension of the arm. In addition to the basic functions, the muscles of the hands can also penetrate and supine the hand. Since this exercise involves the fulfillment of all the above functions (except extension, of course), it comprehensively develops hands.

Shoulder muscle exercises


Usually, when training hands, many athletes neglect the forearm, wanting to develop only the shoulder muscles. Exercises for biceps and triceps, of course, are useful, but if you do only them, then one day you will notice a lack of grip and disproportionality of the hands. Therefore, it is worth approaching the training comprehensively and at least sometimes loading the forearm. Do not forget about safety and immediately take large weights. Take 3 kg dumbbells to familiarize yourself with the Zottman flexes, and soon you will learn the correct technique.

Source: https://habr.com/ru/post/A11163/

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