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5 Pro Tips for Bigger Biceps

The Editors

Richy Chan reveals his proven training tips for building better biceps!

While he may not exactly be a household name yet, one thing is certain: Richy Chan is the hottest bodybuilder out of Canada’s westernmost province. The 39-year-old British Columbia native was born in Victoria and now calls Maple Ridge home. Richy began weight training 16 years ago (and in case you are interested, he names the über-popular West Coast Iron his gym of choice) and continues to make quality gains to his finely tuned physique to this day. He lists Kevin Levrone and action film star Jean Claude Van Damme (aka the Muscles from Brussels) as his physique influences. With his amazing aesthetics, near-perfect proportions, and ability to maintain quality size with razor-sharp cuts, there was no doubt that the Classic Physique division was the right fit for this exceptional athlete. 

It was at the 2018 North American Championships Pro Qualifier—held in Pittsburgh, PA—where Richy earned his IFBB professional status in resounding fashion. It was at the 2019 Vancouver Pro where the BC-born Chan would make his pro debut. He managed a very respectable 7th place finish in his debut IFBB event. Even though he didn’t claim victory in his first pro outing, you wouldn’t know it from the cheers of the audience. The hometown hero was a definite crowd favourite. It’s no wonder that he’s already secured an impressive amount of sponsorship from the likes of Perfect Sports, Broactivewear, PureNutrition, and Mama T’s Cookies.

So what’s next for Richy? For this popular athlete (whom you can follow on Instagram @richychanifbbpro or friend on FaceBook at Richy Chan) the answer is pretty simple: win the next pro show he competes in. After that, take his game to the elite level of the Olympia. But personally and professionally, Richy is all about giving back, whether it be helping to make West Coast Iron the mecca of bodybuilding in British Columbia or aiding in supplying high-grade supplements to the bodybuilding community. Here at Muscle Insider, we love Richy’s drive and expect him to make big waves in the Classic Physique division.


1. Proper Warmup for Biceps. Never start your biceps routine with an exercise that locks your arms in fixed position, as the chances of injury are much higher. To avoid a bicep tear—which seems to be the most common arm-training injury—I always start with standing dumbbell curls. Beginning with 30-pound dumbbells, I pyramid up in 10-pound increments—in sets of 7 reps—until I hit 90-pound dumbbells. This way, the muscles are nice and warm and less likely to get injured by the time I get to the heaviest sets.

2. First Exercise—Go Big or Go Home. People always ask me, “Richy, why do you go so heavy?” It’s simple: Heavy lifting equals bigger muscles. So on your first exercise, I suggest going with a heavy mass builder. As mentioned in my first point—heavy dumbbell curls, pyramiding up, until you can no longer do 7 reps per arm—for me, is just what the doctor ordered. I find this exercise blitz keeps great size on my biceps.

3. Second Exercise—Chase the Pump. I use a preacher bench with very strict form locked in. Since we already did super heavy dumbbell curls now I chase the pump with still medium high weight in the 7 to 8 clean rep range and go to the point where my biceps feel like they are going to explode!

4. Don’t Mix Back and Biceps. Unless your arms dominate your build and you can ease off arm training, you don’t want to train biceps after back. Personally, I found that after a grueling back workout and trying to finish off with biceps, I don’t have strength left in me to finish, as back really fatigues the biceps—even with lifting straps. If you want big arms, give them their own day, which they deserve! Also, I would not recommend training back and biceps in back-to-back days.

5. The Finishing Touches. To have complete, well-rounded arms, make sure you hit the brachialis. This gives the arm the a real 3-D appearance. I always use a rope hammer curls on a 45-degree angle in a standing position. This exercise builds awesome brachialis and is awesome for doing some drop sets for a great pump. In a pinch, cross body dumbbell hammer curls will do the trick.

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