Today, I’m going to share one of Mike Chang’s most recent videos where he gives some tips on the best way to do tricep extensions. As usual, my thoughts are below. Check it out.
Video Title: The Best Way To Do Tricep Extensions
Video Description: It’s Mike, and today I’m going to give you a quick tip about tricep extensions. I’ve done this exercise for so many years, but I’ve found one way that consistently hits my triceps better than all of the others. Listen up because tips like this can help you get the ripped, muscular body you’ve always dreamed about.
We’ll see about that…
So, that’s Mike’s way. And to my surprise, I actually agree with him on (most) of what he said. In case that didn’t sink in… You heard me right. I actually think that I agree with more of what he said than I disagree with, which might actually be a first for a Mike Chang video – at least, for me.
Mike advises you to keep your elbows in tight to your sides. Don’t use momentum. Focus on the triceps. Go to full extension. And this is actually good stuff, for a change. And believe me, I know. This is shocking because this might actually be the first time that I think Mike got an exercise’s technique pretty close to optimal (at least of all the videos I’ve seen so far). But here’s the thing: do you want to know the [real] best way to do tricep extensions?
note: my big fat opinion is coming in 3, 2, 1…
DON’T DO TRICEP EXTENSIONS AT ALL!
Seriously, don’t do them. At least, not unless you’re an advanced bodybuilder (ie you actually compete) and you need an isolation exercise like this to further refine your already fantastic tricep development. And if that’s you, then great! Go for it. But if I may ask, what in the world are you doing watching Youtube videos about this? Oh, that’s right. Pro bodybuilders don’t watch Mike Chang’s Youtube videos for advice!
All kidding aside, I think the real issue here is that for tricep development, most people should not be focusing on an isolation exercise, such as the triceps extension, which targets the relatively small muscle group in an inefficient, ineffective, and altogether impractical movement pattern. To put it bluntly, you probably shouldn’t be using this exercise – period. And you definitely shouldn’t be using it if you’re neglecting the many other great tricep-developing exercises and movements – like all of the various presses, for instance (pushups, parallel-bar dips, handstand pushups, overhead presses, dumbbell bench presses, etc.). Heck, as specialized as it is, even the narrow-grip bench press is a vastly superior exercise to tricep extensions.
Suffice to say, we need to stop debating the minutia. So, please, stop looking for tips and tricks concerning trivial details of trivial exercises. And don’t you dare ask me anything about the triceps extension if you can’t do 50 pushups with good technique. And don’t even think about optimizing the minutia of a trivial exercise until after you’ve optimized the subtle details of the important exercises. You’ll get better results and save yourself a lot of trouble later.