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  1. #1
    Tommy Gunn is offline Member
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    Just started skullcrushers. Could you guys tell me how to properly do them?

    I have never done skull crushers before in my life. But after doing some searches here, I can see that many of you believe it is the best mass building tricep exercise you can do. SwoleCat recomended doing them on a slight decline bench.

    Here's the thing, I workout without a partner, so I have no spotter. Could you guys tell me how to do this exercise from the beggining (mounting the weight, doing the exercise, and dismounting the weight)?

    Is it possible to do skullcrushers without a spotter?

    Thanks fellas.

  2. #2
    Flexor is offline Banned
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    I wouldn't honestly see the point of a decline bench, because that wouldn't pre-stretch the long triceps head but there could be another reason. You would want a flat bench or a high incline bench just to lean against, IMO

  3. #3
    Blown_SC is offline Retired Vet
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    They're certainly a good mass-builder, as are CGBP's, JM Presses, Dips, etc...

    This is slightly different than how I do them, but you get the jist of the movement. I usually bring my arms over my head a lil further...
    http://www.2-fit.com/video/sklcrshr.htm

  4. #4
    THE CROW is offline Associate Member
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    You can do them without a spotter. just put two milk crates or boxes at the end of a bench, spread out the width of your barbell or ez-curl bar. so that you can set the weight down on them without interfering with your grip. don't let not having a spotter slow you down. just adapt.hope this helps.

  5. #5
    Warrior's Avatar
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    They allow a good balance between a heavy load and a good stretch. Close Grip Bench Presses are a good mass/strength builder... and rope extensions would be a good all around strech movement for full-range mobility.

    I prefer skull crushers with a cambered bar on a slight incline bench... this gives me a good range of motion while allowing me to preview my form with a peak at a mirror. Letting the bar go behind my head and not using collars to insure both arms keep there end balanced - otherwise the weights fall off!

    BTW - I have to step load this movement to protect my elbows - to give them enough of a warm up. I will add 20 pounds - then subtract 10, add 20, subtract 10... moving up to the desired weight...

    Not using collars is a personal preference. If you can control the bar it will help force you to keep it parallel with the ground. Make sure you remind a spotter so if they grab the bar after the completions of a set - they know to hold it parallel too. I handed off a cambered bar with a 45 and a 35 on each end to a spotter after finishing a set yesterday, and it fell apart on him... he was kinda pissed about it... Prolly not a good thing to recommend...

  6. #6
    SAGAD_01 is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flexor
    I wouldn't honestly see the point of a decline bench, because that wouldn't pre-stretch the long triceps head but there could be another reason. You would want a flat bench or a high incline bench just to lean against, IMO
    just my thought man...

    i also prefer doing it with a sligt decline...

    at the top of the movement, there's less stress on the elbow joint than if you do it on a flat...

  7. #7
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    decadbal is offline Banned
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    if u do it right, u wont need a decline..


    wow look at who shown up, sup warrior

  8. #8
    Warrior's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Decadbal
    if u do it right, u wont need a decline..


    wow look at who shown up, sup warrior
    Yeah... I will always be in the mist of things waiting for a right time to strike...

    Been a hell of a summer - got married, moved to a new house, got a dog, a bunch of biz stuff, bulked myself back up to 270... you know... the basic stuff...

  9. #9
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    I have always wondered if I was doing them correctly...I do them on a flat bench...so when you bring the bar back to the starting position are you supposed to lock out your elbows ?? I always seem to have a great amount of pain in my elbows when I do skullcrushers. Do you warm up elbows before you do them ....and if you do....how do you warm up ...

  10. #10
    Flexor is offline Banned
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    Quote Originally Posted by GotMilk?
    I have always wondered if I was doing them correctly...I do them on a flat bench...so when you bring the bar back to the starting position are you supposed to lock out your elbows ?? I always seem to have a great amount of pain in my elbows when I do skullcrushers. Do you warm up elbows before you do them ....and if you do....how do you warm up ...
    Warming up is essential!!! You could do some serious damage to your elbow joints if you don't warm up. Everyone's elbows would hurt if they didn't warm them up.

    You can warm up by doing three warm up sets, stepping up the weight each time. For example, warm up with 10 light reps at 25% your usual operating weight. Then do 6 reps at 50% your usual, then go for 4 reps at 75% before doing your usual reps at 100%. The warmups will not fatigue your triceps much but you will protect your elbows.

    Alternatively, exercises like dips and perhaps close grip bench will warm your elbows up, but there is nothing like actually warming up with skulls, to do skulls.

  11. #11
    Warrior's Avatar
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    Yeah - shoulder and elbow pain are too things I have learned to avoid since I managed to clear it up several years back. Such as, I don't work anything in my verticle plain (no behind the neck presses or pulldowns) and I make sure to get a good warm up - blood flow - in the area prior to doing anything heavy.

    One thing I do for Tricep Extensions, like I mentioned above, is step loading. Increase 20 pounds, back down 10, increase 20, back down 10... this gives me a nice warm up. In fact - this is the only area (tricep extensions) I do this type of "pyramiding" of the load. Even starting with dips or close grip presses doesn't get the proper warm up... not as good as step loading with the actual movement. Also, don't get too anxious and start going heavy until you can feel comfort in your elbows for the intended movement (such as extensions)... the warmth, the blood flow... don't go heavy cold.

  12. #12
    Warrior's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GotMilk?
    I have always wondered if I was doing them correctly...I do them on a flat bench...so when you bring the bar back to the starting position are you supposed to lock out your elbows ?? I always seem to have a great amount of pain in my elbows when I do skullcrushers. Do you warm up elbows before you do them ....and if you do....how do you warm up ...
    Don't lock out - it takes the tension of the muscle and puts it on your bone structure... or worse, your connective tissue. IMO - work for a good stretch but don't lock it out, keep your elbows in and focus on those triceps working.

  13. #13
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    alright !!! thanks guys....yeah I'm going to start warming up from now on...before I would go heavy my first set with skullcrushers with no warmup at all ...

  14. #14
    Billyspt4 is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by GotMilk?
    I have always wondered if I was doing them correctly...I do them on a flat bench...so when you bring the bar back to the starting position are you supposed to lock out your elbows ?? I always seem to have a great amount of pain in my elbows when I do skullcrushers. Do you warm up elbows before you do them ....and if you do....how do you warm up ...

    Never lock out, it's one way to prematurely get tendonitis too upon other injuries. The joints, connective tissue just aren't made to withstand that much weight and it will cause injuries that can easily be avoided.

  15. #15
    GotMilk?'s Avatar
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    worked out arms today...and the did a warmup of skullcrushers before I went heavy....and it made HUGE difference !!! THANKS !!!! you guys warm other muscles to ?? like back or chest before you go heavy ??

  16. #16
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    collar is offline Anabolic Member
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    i dont do skull crushers anymore
    they screwed my elbows

  17. #17
    Flexor is offline Banned
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    Quote Originally Posted by GotMilk?
    worked out arms today...and the did a warmup of skullcrushers before I went heavy....and it made HUGE difference !!! THANKS !!!! you guys warm other muscles to ?? like back or chest before you go heavy ??
    Warming up is essential for every exercise, just less so for certain muscles.

    Warming up primes the nervous system for maximum intensity and allows you to lift more weight than cold. It also prevents injury

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