The Best Arm Exercises for Women

Many women tend to shy away from lifting weights because they fear getting big and bulky like a man. Without the proper hormones, this will not happen, as women have too much estrogen. Strength training will give the body a more toned look, help to speed up metabolism and make everyday activities much easier. Additionally, weight training helps to prevent osteoporosis and aids in decreasing body fat. Many women struggle with a lack of upper body strength.


Push-ups use the chest, shoulders and triceps. Start from a position with your toes and hands on the floor, arms straight. Modify this position by putting your knees on the floor instead of your toes. Keeping your torso straight, inhale and lower your body toward the floor, bending your elbows. As you exhale, press your body back up to the starting position.


Find a sturdy chair or bench. Sit on the edge with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Place your thumbs beside your hips and slide your bottom off the chair. Bend your elbows and lower your body toward the floor until your upper arm is parallel to floor. Press back up using your triceps. To make the exercise more difficult, straighten your legs.

Shoulder Press

In order to train the shoulders, grab a set of dumbbells. You can do this exercise seated or standing. Hold the dumbbells above your shoulder, level with your ear while keeping your elbows bent. Press straight above your head, straightening the elbows. Choose a relatively challenging weight through two or three sets.


Many women find pull ups difficult due to lack of training and decreased upper body strength. Pull- ups work the back and biceps. Grab a pull-up bar or weight-assisted machine slightly wider than your shoulders with your palms facing away from the body. Pull your body up so your neck comes in line with your hands. Lower slowly back to the starting position. Modify the pull-up by turning your hands backward and grabbing the bar at shoulder height. The lat pull-down machine works the same muscles and is a great substitute if you find the weight-assisted machine difficult. Movement is the same as the pull-up, only you pull the bar down instead of pulling the body up.

About this Author

Lisa Martin holds a B.S. from the University of Maryland in dietetics, personal training certification through AFAA and is CSCS certified through NSCA. As the owner of Wellness Evolution, she has more than 10 years of experience in the industry, writing a monthly newsletter, blog and articles for various local newspapers.