Lying tricep extensions are also called skull crushers and French press. If you do this workout in a poor form then there might be the risk of injury to your skull that’s why the name is given as skull crusher. They are isolated workouts and their main target is tricep muscles. With just proper and accurate technique, apart from targeting on triceps, lying tricep extensions will also focus on other muscles groups like deltoids and lats. You can perform them with either the barbell, dumbbell, or kettlebell.

Lying tricep extensions is the best variation of tricep extensions. Whether it is enhanced synergy between lower and upper body muscles or improving the stability of shoulders it’s always good to try on triceps incorporating them on the gym floor. Major functions of a tricep are extensions of elbows and shoulders and this workout will do these functions effectively. Keeping meticulous attention to the technique will help you achieve the maximum benefits of lying tricep extension. Keeping meticulous attention to the technique will help you achieve the maximum benefits of lying tricep extension. Let us check out more information about this extension below. 

How to do Lying Tricep Extension or Skull Crusher

  1. You can start with dumbbells that are low weight.
  2. Lie down on a bench with your face facing up towards the ceiling.
  3. By holding the pair of dumbbells in your hand, push them towards the ceiling straight.
  4. Your core should be engaged throughout the entire set.
  5. When your weights are up, bend your elbows so that dumbbells just reach beside your temple part of the head.
  6. The arm and shoulder positioning should be optimal and tension should be felt in your lats muscles.
  7. Pause for a moment then straighten up your arms and slowly keep the dumbbells aside.
  8. Repeat this movement for around 5-6 reps.

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Lying Tricep Extension Variation

Floor Form

3 Best Lying Tricep Extension Guide for Achieving Strong Triceps

The only difference in this form is instead of lying on the bench you can try to do it on the floor. However, you have to be cautious with its form. Do not bang the weight on the floor and with this form, you will not be able to lower more weight. 

Barbell Skull Crusher

Barbell Skull Crusher

This is the most preferred variation of this workout. Instead of a dumbbell, we use a barbell. Lie down on the bench or the floor. Just keep the barbell near your chest area. With a strong grip, move your elbows and try pushing the barbell above your head, just like you did with a dumbbell in the standard version. And bring the bar back to normal position. Remember with this form, your wrist has to be strong. The most strain on the wrist is expected with this variation. 

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Incline Skull Crusher

Instead of a flat bench or floor, you can try this form o incline bench too. Incline one is easier to practice than flat because it provides extra comfort to your back muscles. 

Common Mistakes while Performing Lying Tricep Extension

Common Mistakes while Performing Lying Tricep Extension

1. The most common mistake is loose grip. If your grip is not firm then there are chances of slipping the weight and getting injured straight on your face. So strong or tightening grip is essential to perform this workout. 

2. The weight should be wither backside of your head or near your head. Most people lower the load towards the front of your face. This is a major mistake. 

3. Do not lift the weight at high speed. This could strain your triceps and forearms. Perform the movement slowly. 

4. During the entire workout, the position of your hand should be shoulder-width apart. This would put less strain on your elbow joints. 


3 Best Lying Tricep Extension Guide for Achieving Strong Triceps

1. A major benefit you could attain from this workout is strong shoulders, triceps, and mobility of elbow joints. 

2. Strong triceps furthermore helps to lift or push heavy load things. 

3. Also, it helps to perform and give good performance in sports activities like baseball, basketball, and swimming. 

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