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Do Hammer Curls Work Bicep Peak? (Here’s The Answer)

Hammer curls do a great job of activating the long head of your bicep, so they’re effective at working your bicep peak.

They’ve been a favorite of bodybuilders and general fitness fanatics for a while, as they not only work your bicep peak, but can also help develop your forearms adding to the overall size of your arms.

While hammer curls might not entirely isolate the long head of your biceps, they still work them sufficiently to help build your bicep peak.

man doing seated hammer curls

Are Hammer Curls Work Your Bicep Peak More Than Bicep Curls?

Both bicep curls and hammer curls are good exercises to perform if you want to build a big bicep peak.

The main difference is that in hammer curls, your forearm muscles activate more than they do in bicep curls.

This makes bicep curls slightly better at isolating the long head of your biceps and building your bicep peak.

That doesn’t mean that hammer curls don’t have a place in building big arms.

In fact, it’s usually a good idea to have bicep curls and hammer curls (along with other curl variations) in your arm workouts.

Working your biceps in different ways using multiple variations can go a long way in giving you that bulging bicep peak you’re looking for.

The Anatomy of the Bicep

anatomy of biceps

The bicep muscle consists of two heads – the long head and the short head. 

Each head has more of an impact on different areas of muscle appearance.

For example, the long head of the bicep is more responsible for the peak of the muscle. Whereas the short head is focussed more on establishing muscle width.

A well-developed long head results in a larger bicep peak, so this tends to be the area of focus for many gym-goers.

Best Bicep Peak Exercises

Hammer curls and bicep curls aren’t the only exercises that work your bicep peak.

There’s actually a range of exercises that do a great job in working the long head of your biceps, causing increased levels of growth in your bicep peak.

Seated Drag Curl

When performed correctly, a seated barbell drag curl is an impressive bicep peak building exercise.

You need to be careful that you’re actually doing a drag curl rather than a standard barbell curl, but the seated position will definitely make this easier.

A seated barbell drag curl is performed by sitting on a bench with a barbell resting on your thighs.

From this position, you should “drag” the bar up your body to your chest with the bar remaining in contact with your body throughout the movement.

You can then slowly lower the bar back down to its starting position before repeating for the relevant number of reps.

Bicep curls work both heads of your biceps to some extent, whereas drag curls put a lot of emphasis on the peak-building long head.

Preacher Curls

Preacher curls involve having the backs of your arms supported against a pad resulting in a huge reduction in momentum during the curl movement.

As your legs, back, and shoulders can’t help during preacher curls, the long head of your biceps has to work more to lift the weight.

Many gyms have specific preacher curl benches but you can perform them pretty well on any bench that can restrict the movement of other muscles groups apart from your biceps.

A barbell or EZ bar can be used for the exercise, so it offers a good amount of variety while still being very effective at building your bicep peak.

Incline Dumbbell Curls

While the movement of incline dumbbell curls is similar to standard dumbbell curls, the increase in range of motion makes quite a big difference.

Your biceps have to work harder to move the weight through the increased range of motion resulting in a harder exercise and more focus on the long head of your biceps.

One of the best things about incline dumbbell curls is that you only need a bench with a movable back and a set of dumbbells to perform them effectively.


In summary, bicep curls work your bicep peak better than hammer curls since hammer curls rely more on forearm activation.

That’s all for this article, but do hammer curls work chest?

Hope this helped!


Biceps Anatomy

Hammer Curls Muscles Worked