Tricep dips is one of the most common exercises yet few people are not aware of how to do tricep dips exercise with correct form. Here is the complete step by step guide on how to do tricep dips exercise/workout. You can perform this triceps workout at home as well. Follow the instruction given and read precautions carefully before starting this exercise.

Dips is one of the most effective exercise to build your tricep, in other word you can say- this is the best triceps workout and can be performed anywhere at your convenience. This will be a detailed guide on Tricep dips where you will get basics of tricep dips, anatomy, procedure, precautions, variations, etc and much more details to do tricep dips with correct form.

Triceps Anatomy

Triceps is called as triceps brachii (three-headed muscle of the arm) which originates just below the socket of the scapula (shoulder blade) and extends downward where it is attached to upper part of ulna, that is, in the forearm.

What is 'Tricep Dips' ?

‘Tricep dips’ is a variation exercise of normal dips which mainly targets tricep muscle of your upper arm. Moreover, it also activates your core as you need to hold downward position for few seconds which strenthens your core.

Main function of the triceps brachii muscle is to extend the forearm at the elbow joint which literally means to straighten the arm. Tricpes works in co-ordination with the biceps muscle to enable extension and retraction of the forearm.

Best thing about tricep dips is its convenience as it can be done at workout bench, park or even at home if you know the correct form of doing this exercise.

How to do Tricep Dips Exercise?

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Step by Step process of doing Tricep Dips

  1. Make sure your hands are shoulder width apart on a stable bench or block.
  2. Extend your legs in front of you or even you can maintain squats position of legs.
  3. Move your butt straight upwards until your arms gets almost straight.
  4. Keep a little bend in elbows so that the tension will apply on your triceps.
  5. Slowly lower your butt towards the floor by bending your elbow.
  6. Lower your body until your elbow are at about 90 degrees.
  7. While your body is lowering down, keep your back close to the block/bench.
  8. Now return to the starting position by moving your body straight up, pressing the bench down to straighten your elbow.
  9. With this, you have completed 1 repetition.
  10. Repeat this until you feel stress in your tricep.

Precautions for Tricep Dips Exercise

This is one of the simplest tricep exercises you can perform anywhere. Even if it seems easier, you can harm your muscles/ body if you doing it in the wrong manner. Follow the proper instructions before performing tricep dips. If you have joint problems then you should use alternate to this exercise to build your triceps. If you have shoulder problems, then you may have to drop the idea about this workout. Consult with the doctor before doing any workout. Following are the common mistakes happen while performing this exercise.

  1. Shoulders are to be kept down (Straight Shoulders), Should not move towards ears.
  2. Focus on the shoulder strain while lowering your body and stop going down if you feel the uncontrollable strain. It may injure your shoulder if you keep moving your body downwards.
  3. When you are at the top position, don’t lock your elbow. It should have a slight bend to strengthen your tricep and to avoid elbow joint injury.
  4. You can modify this exercise in a few ways to make it more or less difficult.

Variation of Tricep Dips

There are some variations of Tricep dips which are also called as ‘advanced tricep dips’. These variations can target tricep muscle and core at its best. But you must shift to advanced tricep dips only when :

  1. You have attained good form over tricep dips
  2. You can perform 3 sets of 12 reps each without failure
  3. You can hold downward position for 3 seconds (good control over posture)

Variation 1: Adding external weights

In this case, you can add external weights in terms of Dumbell or Plates to increase the difficulty level of tricep dips. It increases the load on triceps brachii.


  1. Take external help to add and remove weights during exercise
  2. Gradually increase the weight to avoid injury
  3. Maintain a constant distance from ground in downward position

Variation 2: Horizontal Tricep Dips

This variation of tricep dips can be done without any external support. It is more effective because your whole body weight acts on your tricep muscle as well as core.


  1. Keep your back straight during the complete exercise
  2. Keep the knee position fixed
  3. Your knee and ankle must be along a straight line (vertical axis)
  4. Maintain eye contact on a stationary point for proper form

Variation 3: Tricep Dips using Double Bar

The resistance you need during tricep dips is provided by your bodyweight. Moreover, you are lifting your body against gravity which increases the difficulty level of this exercise and benefits too. In previous variations, as legs touched ground, the body weight was divided between the ground and tricep muscles. But in this case, whole body weight completely acts on triceps brachii.


  1. Avoid wrist rotation during exercise
  2. Maintain upper body and lower body vertically alligned.
  3. Avoid swinging or front/backward movement of lower body
  4. Maintain your eye contact parallel with the ground during exercise

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