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How Many Incline Curls Should You Do? (Reps & Sets)

Incline curls are a popular biceps exercise that can help add some serious gains.

Like with any exercise, the number of reps and sets you do plays an important role in the results you see.

So in this post, we look at the different sets and reps range you should do when performing incline curls to help you reach your fitness goals.


Let’s get to it.

How Many Reps And Sets For Incline Curls? (Short Answer)

Generally speaking, performing 3 – 5 sets of 6 – 12 reps will help you add size to your biceps. 

This isn’t optimal for everyone though.

Maybe you want to train for strength. In which case, the sets and reps range will differ.

Keep reading to know the optimal sets and reps range for your specific fitness goals!

How Many Reps And Sets For Incline Curls? (Long Answer)

As mentioned earlier, your fitness goals will determine the sets and reps range of incline curls which is optimal for you.

If you’re wanting to build as much strength as possible, then your rep range for incline curls will be lower.

Whereas if adding size to your biceps is your goal, then a higher rep range will be more suitable.

Optimal Set & Rep Range For Building Size

Many gym-goers do incline curls to add bulk to their biceps.

When it comes to the rep range for adding mass, it tends to be on the higher side. Performing 8 – 12 reps is usually the recommended range for adding size.

This means you should use dumbbells which allow you to perform at least 8 incline curls, but no more than 12 per set.

If you can’t do 8 reps, the weight is too high.

Whereas if you can do 12 reps with ease, you should consider increasing weight.

As you’ll be doing plenty of reps, the number of sets you should be able to do will be between 3 and 5.

Optimal Set & Rep Range For Building Strength

For optimal results, you should use a different set and rep range for building strength.

You’ll be lifting heavier dumbbells, and so the number of reps you’ll complete per set will reduce.

For effective strength building with incline curls, you should aim for 2 – 6 sets of 1 – 5 reps.

Strength training requires heavy weights, so if you can complete more than 6 reps, then you should use heavier dumbbells for best results.

Optimal Set & Rep Range For German Volume Training

German volume training (GVT) is about exhausting the working muscles during your workout.

It involves performing 10 sets of 10 reps with a minute rest between each set.

Getting the correct weight for GVT can be quite tricky. Some suggest that 60% of your 1 rep max will be a suitable weight for GVT.

As a rough guide, this’ll likely be a weight that you can do a set of 20 reps with before failure.

This may seem like a light weight, but trust me – the last 5 sets are torture!

How Often Should You Do Incline Curls?

In general, your muscles need between 24 – 48 hours to recover after a heavy workout.

Again though, the frequency will depend on your goals and training style.

The heavier the weights you’re lifting, the more recovery time your muscles will need. This may mean you can only do incline curls twice a week if you’re training for strength.

Whereas if you’re training for size, you may get away with an extra workout or two. 


Hypertrophy Rep Range