How to Hammer Curl

About the Hammer Curl

The dumbbell hammer curl is an effective choice for athletes who wish to primarily target the brachialis (muscle located beneath the biceps) and brachioradialis (muscle of the forearm which runs up to the upper arm), with some assistance from the biceps. Due to the neutral grip used during the hammer curl, the bicep activity is reduced compared to the traditional barbell curl or the EZ bar curl, and the emphasis shifts onto the other arm flexor muscles aforementioned.

Whilst this exercise profile mainly discusses the hammer curl performed standing, you can also use the grip in a variety of curling exercises, such as prone on an incline bench, on a preacher station or seated. Using a rope attachment on a low cable pulley is another option, which are known as rope curls.

How to perform


  1. Find a set of dumbbells of a suitable weight
  2. Grasp the dumbbells whilst standing erect, dumbbells down by your sides
  3. Keep torso erect, upper arms stationary by your sides and palms facing inward (neutral grip) when grasping the dumbbells


  1. Keeping your torso and upper arms stationary, curl the dumbbells up whilst maintaining a neutral grip
  2. Once peak contraction is reached, reverse the movement back to the starting position
  3. Repeat for the desired number of repetitions

Other Arm Exercises