Shawn Rhoden is Armed and Dangerous

Shawn Rhoden's game plan to blow up his arms.

“Every year, you’ve got to go back to the blueprint, see what changes you can make. It’s like a car—there’s all kinds of ways to trick it out, get it back into shape, beef it up a bit," Rhoden says. Rhoden is a fan of what he hears people calling “old-school bodybuilding.” To him, it’s all bodybuilding. “Today the focus is so much on being big—anyone can be bigger,” Rhoden says. “Bodybuilding is an art, and you can lose the art of it trying to be a muscle monster—the beauty of it can be lost.” The underlying message is that while he agrees that gaining muscle is necessary, the ideals of definition and symmetry should not be tossed aside.

RHODEN FAVORS CABLES FOR THE CONSTANT TENSION THEY PROVIDE THROUGH THE ENTIRE RANGE OF MOTION.

CABLE CURL

4–5 sets x 8–15 reps

"I do high- and low-cable curls, I do them with a straight bar, or one-handed if I want to put more focus on the individual bicep. When you use two arms, you can use more weight. Cables help you isolate the muscle and focus more on the biceps stretching and contracting on each rep."

PUSHDOWN

4–5 sets x 8–15 reps

“Stance is very important. The right body position is crucial. You have to make sure your feet are aligned with the shoulders, arms are tight, shoulders are firm. This is all about making the triceps work through a full range of motion. Get a strong contraction at the end and hold it for a second or two. Focus on the triceps and nothing else.”

CONCENTRATION CURL

4–5 sets x 8–15 reps

“This is a finishing exercise for me. Heavy weight is not the priority here. It’s all about focusing on the muscle working. It’s even in the name of the exercise! Pinch in the contraction of the muscle as much as possible. You have to feel the connection to the biceps.”

 

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