If you're looking to add size or shape to your biceps without using free weights or machines, use your body weight as a form of resistance. It's possible to tone and strengthen your arm muscles with a few basic movements while saving yourself time and money. Before starting an exercise program, be sure to consult a physician.
Seated Bent-Knee Biceps Stretch
The American Council on Exercise notes that seated bent-knee biceps stretches target the biceps muscles and the pectoral muscles as a secondary group. Take a seated bent-knee position with arms outstretched behind you and place your feet and palms flat on the floor. Distribute your weight evenly between your butt, arms and feet by shifting your position. Avoid arching or slumping and keep your head aligned with the spine. Slowly slide your butt toward your feel while keeping your hands still and gently exhaling. Feel the stretch in your biceps and through the front shoulder. Move yourself forward until you feel tension but never to the point of experiencing pain. Maintain this position for 15 to 30 seconds then slowly return to the starting position and repeat the movement two to four times.
Half Moon Rotation
The half-moon rotation exercise helps to target the biceps and tone your arms without the use of weights. Stand erect with your feet at hip-width and move your arms straight out to both sides at shoulder height, keeping your fingers together and palms down. Rotate your thumbs back until your palms face up. Slowly rotate your palms forward to complete the movement. Perform 30 repetitions, keeping your arms elevated the entire time.
Chin-ups help to build the biceps muscle while also targeting the latissimus dorsi muscles across your back. Grasp a chin-up bar with your hands spread shoulder-width apart and stabilize your body by stiffening your abdominal muscles and crossing your legs. Pull your shoulders back and down and make sure your head is aligned with your trunk. Slowly move your body toward the bar while exhaling, pulling your arms to your sides. Avoid swinging your body during the movement. Pause when your chin is level with the bar and slowly return to the starting position by letting your arms extend back overhead. Repeat the movement.
Pay strict attention to form when performing chin-ups to reduce stress on your shoulders and effectively target the biceps muscles. Consider using a spotter for an extra boost on your last repetitions before failure.