What is a Zottman Curl?

A Zottman curl is a specific resistance exercise that targets the muscles of the arms, specifically the biceps and forearms. It’s a variation of the traditional dumbbell curl and is known for its ability to work multiple muscle groups in a single movement.

The Zottman curl combines elements of both bicep curls and reverse curls into one exercise. To perform a Zottman curl, you start with a traditional dumbbell curl, lifting the weight with your palms facing up. However, as you lower the dumbbell, you rotate your wrists, so your palms face downward, and then lift the weight again. This combination targets both the biceps (during the upward phase) and the forearms (during the downward phase).


  • Bodybuilders and strength athletes often incorporate Zottman curls into their arm workouts to develop both bicep size and forearm strength.
  • If you’re looking to increase your grip strength, Zottman curls can be an effective addition to your routine.

Related Terms:

  • Bicep Curl: An exercise that primarily targets the biceps by lifting a weight with the palms facing up.
  • Reverse Curl: An exercise that primarily targets the forearm muscles by lifting a weight with the palms facing down.

Common Related Questions:

  1. What are the benefits of including Zottman curls in my workout routine?
    • Zottman curls can help develop well-rounded arm strength by targeting both the biceps and forearms.
  2. How heavy should the dumbbells be for Zottman curls?
    • The weight you choose should challenge you, but it should still allow you to maintain proper form throughout the exercise.
  3. Can beginners perform Zottman curls, or are they better suited for experienced lifters?
    • Beginners can perform Zottman curls, but it’s essential to start with a manageable weight and focus on proper technique to avoid injury.

Do Not Confuse With:

  • Hammer Curl: Another exercise that targets the biceps and forearms but involves lifting the weight with the palms facing each other throughout the movement, distinct from the wrist rotation in Zottman curls.

Incorporating Zottman curls into your workout routine can help you build balanced arm strength and develop both your biceps and forearms effectively.

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