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Health Checkup: October 9, 2008

Biceps Workout For Strength And Size

By Richard Black

When people begin working out, chances are the arms will be one of the first areas of their body they will begin to train. After all, other than the chest, the arms represent one area of the body that serves as a clear indicator that a person is working out and lifting weights.

The general function and movement of the biceps makes training and exercising them relatively simple. In most cases, a biceps workout involves using exercises that require a curling and/or extension of the arm at the elbow. This usually means the use of old-fashioned curls.

Other than simple and traditional curls, there are many other ways to train and exercise the biceps. From free weights to machines, there are a variety of ways and methods to help train and develop the biceps.

Preacher curls
This exercise is done using one arm at a time on a preacher machine/bench, with a set of dumbbells. This is the perfect exercise for developing full biceps, since it does isolate and train the "peak" of the muscle. With weight in hand and the elbow locked in place against the bench, curl the dumbbell up slowly toward the shoulder. Hold for a second or two, then slowly return to the starting position.

Incline curls
Using an incline bench, hold a pair of dumbbells with arms hanging down the sides and the palms facing in. Curl the weights up while at the same time rotating the wrists. Hold and return the weights to their original position. Form is very important in this particular exercise, so lighter dumbbells should be used here. The fact that it allows a full range of motion will still yield awesome results, even with the lower weights.

Standing barbell curls
This exercise can be performed using barbells or dumbbells. They key here though, is to do the curls from a stable, solid, standing position. With the weight in hand and the arms straight down, slowly curl the weight in the direction of the chest, keeping the elbows and back in a fixed position. Hold the position for a second or two to contract the muscles, then slowly lower the weight back down.

Hammer curls
Not just an exercise for the biceps, hammer curls are an effective (and dramatic) exercise for the development of the entire region in between the biceps and the triceps. Proper development of this area can actually push the biceps up, giving them a larger appearance and thickness.

To do this exercise, hold a pair of dumbbells with palms facing in and arms at the sides of the body. Curl the weight up (keeping the elbows fixed at all times) without rotating the wrists. Hold and slowly lower the weights to their original position. This exercise can be done one arm at a time, or both arms at the same time.

Richard Black runs the Web site www.hugebicepsguide.com.  Source: www.physicalfitnessarticles.net

LINK OF THE WEEK

www.medhelp.org

MedHelp is one of the largest online health information-sharing communities with searchable community forums and patient journals.

Dr. Fenig Answers Your Questions about Male Sexual Health and Fertility

David M. Fenig, M.D., Associate Director of Reproductive Medicine and Surgery, Sexuality and Aesthetics at Chesapeake Urology Associates answers your questions.

Q: Can my vasectomy be reversed? What are the odds?
A:
If you’ve had a vasectomy and want to have children, a vasectomy reversal may be possible. An experienced surgeon can reconnect the vas deferens to allow sperm to pass through the tube. The odds of a successful reversal depend on the skill of your surgeon and the findings during surgery. The skilled doctors at Chesapeake Urology have performed many successful vasectomy reversals.

Q: My partner and I are having trouble having a baby.  Could I have an infertility problem?
A:
   A male factor is present in 50% of infertile couples.  As a urologist, I evaluate the male with a thorough examination and laboratory tests, including a semen analysis.  Medical and surgical treatments will often help improve a man’s fertility.

Q: My erections aren’t as hard as they used to be.  What can I do?
A:
You are not alone.  Erectile dysfunction is a common problem.  ED is associated with a variety of medical conditions and medications.  Oral medicines such as viagra, levitra, and cialis are very effective in restoring a man’s potency.  Injectable medications and surgical implants will help in severe cases.

Q: I’ve noticed a decrease in my energy and sex drive as I’ve gotten older.  Is this normal?
A:
These symptoms should not be considered a normal part of aging.  While systemic illnesses and medications can cause these symptoms, a testosterone level should be checked routinely in these situations since testosterone does decrease with age.  Low testosterone, or hypogonadism, may also affect exercise capacity and erections.  It can be effectively treated with testosterone replacement therapy, most commonly with topical gels or injectable preparations.

Q:  My penis has developed curvature.  What is wrong?
A:
The medical term is Peyronie's Disease, a process where fibrous plaques develop and cause the penis to bend.  Peyronie's Disease is not contagious or related in any way to cancer. It can be treated by a urologic specialist. Medications may help slow the process or surgical straightening can be considered.

David M. Fenig, M.D., received his undergraduate and medical degrees from the University of Pennsylvania and completed his urology training at New York University and Baylor College of Medicine. Dr. Fenig specializes in vasectomy, vasectomy reversal, male infertility, erectile dysfunction, hypogonadism, and Peyronie’s disease.

As the largest urology practice group in Maryland, Chesapeake Urology combines the expertise of 46 top physicians in 16 offices and 14 ambulatory surgical centers throughout the state. CUA offers expertise in treating prostate cancer, testicular cancer, erectile dysfunction, vasectomy, vasectomy reversal and more. For details, call 1-866-955-0002 or visit chesapeakeurology.com.

Issue 3.41: October 9, 2008