Andie Thueson » Fitness » Workouts » The BEST Back and Bicep Workout For Women.

The BEST Back and Bicep Workout For Women.


When it comes to women and most of the women I have coached, there is this misconception that when you lift weights, you will instantly become bulky and “big,” which is not the case. I think that old belief is starting to be debunked recently. This back and bicep workout has been designed with women in mind. In this outlined workout, I have picked the best exercises to target muscle groups that will help define and tone your back and bicep muscles to help you look sleek and lean, helping to avoid “bulk.”

With that being said, some body types tend to bulk or add muscle mass quickly, and lifting weights can play a part in that, but for most of us, we have a green light to lift weights.

Like I am always saying, you are your own guru. Try things out and see what works for you and your body. I am in a constant state of awe and wonder over our amazing bodies and how each one is entirely different. As a personal trainer, it does not surprise me anymore that what works wonders for one of my clients may cause all kinds of problems for another. So please LISTEN to your body, take what works for you, and leave the rest.

Please repeat after me; there is no one size fits all fitness program out there.

Choose workouts that you love and feed your soul! If you hate the workout the entire time, it will not be effective for you!

Photo of Andie on Yoga Mat ready to complete the back and bicep workout for women!
Are you ready to tone your arms and back???

Before you get started, I recommend a quick stretch to help loosen up the muscles you are about to work! Check out my quick dynamic stretching routine for some ideas on how to warm up properly. By doing so, you’ll avoid injury or pulling muscles.

So for this back and bicep workout for women, you will need a medium pair of dumbbells. Typically I recommend starting with 5-8 lbs and working yourself up to 10-12 lbs. This is a toning workout, so we are using a lightweight and more reps foundation.

For this back and bicep workout for women, you’ll complete three sets of each exercise with a rep range of 10-15 reps, resting 60-90 seconds before moving on to the next set of exercises.

It is important to practice proper form for all of these biceps exercises. You will want to stand upright with your feet hip-width apart; this is your starting position. Pay attention and keep your back straight and your abdominal muscles tight throughout the workout. This will help protect your back and avoid injury.

Let’s get started, back and bicep workout day!

Photo of Andie completing L biceps curls. Andie is wearing a read top and black leggings a move in the back and bicep workout for women.
L Curls are a unique and very targeted movement

L CURLS – 3 Sets of 10-15 Reps 

  1. For this very effective exercise, start with your elbows close to the body and rotate your arms out to the side, keeping your arms at a 90-degree angle. This unique bicep curl variation is considered an isolation exercise and will help to target small muscle groups in your upper arms. Keep your range of motion tight and controlled.
  2. Keep your back straight and keep your core engaged when completing this exercise. Good form will ensure that the right muscle groups are being worked.
  3. Make sure and rest between sets and stretch out your arms! 
Andie holding ten pound weights while completing 7's a serious of 3 different targeted bicep movements for the back and bicep workout for women.
7’s are one of my favorite exercises for any back and bicep workout!

21s 3 Sets of 21 total biceps exercise 7-7-7 = 1 set {7×3 = 21 get it? 😜}

21s are my favorite exercise for toning your biceps again; this exercise helps isolate the smaller muscles within the bicep muscle.

  1. 7 full-range bicep curls. Start with 7 normal full-range bicep curls going all the way down and back up.
  2. 7 Upper bicep curls. Then you’ll do 7 upper biceps curls, where you start at 90 degrees and elbows tucked by your side and curl up. Don’t go below the 90-degree starting point on the bottom. 
  3. 7 lowe bicep curls. To finish off your first set, you’ll start in the same position, then curl down and back up to the starting 90-degree spot.

When doing bicep curls, you always want to make sure you control the movement and not let momentum take control – think “slow and deliberate.” Whenever I see guys at the gum quickly swinging weights up and down, I inwardly cringe and worry about what I know will soon translate into back issues.

Andie holding ten pound weights while completing a hammer curl another movement in the back and bicep workout for women.
Hammer Curls are great for sculpting your biceps!

Hammer Curls 3 sets of 10-15 Reps

  1. Hammer curls are pretty much exactly like they sound. You’ll be moving the weight down like you would if you were nailing a nail with a hammer! Just remember to go slow and be in control of the movement. 

Now that we completed the best bicep exercises to tighten and tone your arms, so you’re on your way to looking hot in that tank top this summer let’s move on to some back exercises. You always want to work on complimentary muscle groups when working major muscles together. i.e., back and biceps, chest, and triceps. This is the best way to target muscle groups.

So now it’s on to the best back exercises for sculpting a lean, toned, sexy back. Cue Justin Timberlake’s – I’m bringing sexy back. Back Workout Time!

Andie holding weights demonstrating how to complete a reverse fly as part of the back and bicep workout for women
Reverse Flys are a great way to target upper back muscles

Bent-Over Reverse Flys 3 Sets of 10-15 Reps

  1. With your feet shoulder-width apart, slightly bent over, keeping a straight back, and extending your arms out to the side, keeping them in a “hug-curve,” it does help to envision you are squeezing a quarter between your shoulder blade as you are working your upper back muscles. 
Andie lying on her stomach lifting up into a superman position and holding it in this back and bicep workout for women.
Supermans, love ’em’ or hate them. They are effective!

Supermans 3 Sets of 10 -15 Reps 

When I started working out, the trainer I had hired made me do these, and I hated them. I felt like a beached whale. They are done in a super unflattering pose to put yourself into at the gym. But I promise they are an excellent exercise and a great way to help sculpt your lower back, and I was grateful my trainer made me do them, no matter how unflattering they were.

  1. So lay flat on your tummy and lift up, then hold for a couple of seconds, lower back down, and repeat the process 10-15 more times! If you are uncomfortable about doing these in a crowded gym, knock these out when you get home, or this whole workout can be done entirely in the solidity of your own home.
Seated rows with a resistance band are another amazing movement for sculpting your back, Andie is demonstrating how to correctly complete the movement in this back and bicep workout for women.
Seated Rows are a great exercise that can be done anywhere!

Seated Rows 3 Sets of 10-12 Reps 

  1. The first step is getting the proper wrap on your feet. This will help the resistance bands not slide and stay firmly where you want them to be! Go over your feet first, then around!
  2. Keeping your back straight, pull the weights back, squeezing that quarter between your shoulder blades again! 

If you are not feeling some of the above exercises, feel free to swap them out for another exercise with similar movements as swaps in this back and bicep workout for women.

For alternate back movements, try these instead:

  • dumbbell rows
  • bent-over barbell row
  • lat pulldowns
  • t-bar rows
  • cable rows

For alternate bicep exercises, consider any of the following:

  • barbell curls
  • preacher curls
  • concentration curls
  • dumbbell curl
  • resistance band curls
  • reverse curls

And that is it, dear friends, you did it! This back and biceps workout focuses on toning and tightening your muscles. So if you are looking to build stronger, bigger biceps, this is not the workout for you.

Some important things to remember for this workout and any other workout routine are constantly focusing on good posture and proper form. As you work different muscles, always remember “slow and controlled,” making sure you are working the muscle on the way up and on the way down.

Congrats on a great workout! Strength training is a great way to mix things up and target muscles in different ways; variety is a great way to get the best results! I hope you loved this back and bicep workout for women!

If you need a video demonstration of any of these exercises, head over to my video library!

Much Love,

Andie's signature


  1. Thank you for sharing this!! We’ve created a space in our home, where we can workout & I need all the tips I can get!

  2. Valentina says:

    5 stars
    Love these workout ideas! Will definitely be using these to get into perfect shape for summertime!

  3. I’ve been looking for a great arm workout, thanks so much for sharing!

  4. 5 stars
    This is awesome!! I am always trying new things to help my body!! These are right up my alley!

  5. 5 stars
    This was very informative and helpful, I really enjoyed following your workout and I am excited to get back into shape!

  6. 5 stars
    Amazing Tips. The blog deeply explains all the exercises that a woman should do in order to have a strong back and toned biceps. The exercises listed here are indeed helpful.

  7. 5 stars
    Loved all these tips! I need all the help I can get for work outs and you make it easy!

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