Triceps Extension

A weight training exercise to target the triceps muscle.

Primary Muscle Triceps
Secondary Muscle(s) None
Difficulty Intermediate
Also known as Skull Crushers, French Extensions, French Presses
Optional Barbell and Weights, Dumbbells

How to do Triceps Extension

These instructions are assuming a horizontal lying position is being used with a barbell. 

  1. Lie on a bench with feet on the ground, hands gripping a barbell with overhand grip.  
  2. Position the barbell over the forehead with arms extended. 
  3. Bend the arms at the elbow, lowering the weight towards and over the head
  4. Press the weight back up to the starting position by extending the arms
  5. Repeat for desired reps.  

Triceps Extension Guide

The triceps extension is an isolated weight training exercise designed to target the triceps muscles directly. 

The exercise has many variations as it can be performed in standing, flat lying, declined, and inclined positions or using barbells / dumbbells for the weighted object. The different positions affect the difficulty of the exercise. 

Triceps Extension Variations

  • Barbell Triceps Extension - utilising a barbell for the weights
  • Dumbbell Triceps Extension - utilising dumbbells for the weights
  • Incline Triceps Extension - performing the extension on a raised incline bench
  • Decline Triceps Extension - performing the extension on a lowered, decline bench
  • Lying Triceps Extension - the body is laid flat on a bench for the exercise
  • Standing Triceps Extension - the body is standing upright during the exercise
  • Single-Arm Triceps Extension - one arm is trained at a time


Always consult your GP before undertaking any form of weight loss, fitness or exercise.