Arm workout for weight loss is a great way to get started if you are new to working out. There are many different kinds of arm workouts that can be done at home or in the gym. This article will cover some of the best arm exercises for weight loss, as well as some tips on how to get started with your own workout plan.

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Best Arm Workout For Weight Loss

Shedding stubborn body fat can be tricky, especially when it’s concentrated in a specific area of your body.

The arms are often considered a problem area, leaving many people seeking out ways to lose extra arm fat.

Fortunately, there are several methods you can use to slim down and tone your arms.

Here are 9 ways to decrease arm fat and promote overall weight loss.

1. Focus on Overall Weight Loss

Spot reduction is a technique that focuses on burning fat in a specific part of your body, such as the arms.

Though spot reduction is popular in the fitness industry, most studies have found it to be ineffective.

One study in 104 people showed that completing a 12-week resistance training program using only the non-dominant arm increased overall fat loss but had little impact on the specific area being exercised.

Another small 12-week study found that resistance training focusing on one leg was effective at decreasing overall body fat but did not reduce body fat in the leg being trained.

Therefore, it’s best to focus on overall weight loss and use exercise for muscle toning rather than fat loss.

SUMMARY Multiple studies show that spot reduction is ineffective. Instead, try using specific exercises for muscle toning and focus on overall weight loss.

2. Start Lifting Weights

Resistance training is a type of exercise that involves working against a force to build muscle mass and increase strength.

Lifting weights is a common example. While it may not cause fat loss in your arms specifically, it can help increase overall fat loss and tone your arms to help them look slimmer.

For example, one 12-week study in 28 women with type 2 diabetes showed that performing low-intensity resistance training promoted total fat loss while increasing muscle mass and strength.

Another study in 109 people observed that resistance training alone or combined with aerobic exercise was more effective at increasing lean body mass than aerobic exercise alone.

Building lean body mass can help boost metabolism and increase the number of calories burned at rest throughout the day.

Bicep curls, overhead tricep extensions, overhead presses, and upright rows are a few examples of exercises that can help tone your arms and boost muscle mass.

SUMMARY Lifting weights can help decrease body fat, increase muscle mass, and tone your arms to help them appear slimmer.

3. Increase Your Fiber Intake

Adding a few additional servings of fiber to your diet can jumpstart weight loss and help you lose excess body fat.

Fiber moves slowly through your digestive system, which increases the amount of time it takes to empty your stomach and helps you feel fuller for longer.

According to one study in 252 women, each gram of dietary fiber consumed was associated with 0.25% less body fat and 0.5 pounds (0.25 kg) less body weight over 20 months.

In another review, increasing daily fiber intake by 14 grams for 4 months was linked to a 10% reduction in total calorie intake and 4.2 pounds (1.9 kg) of weight loss — without making any other changes.

Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, seeds, and legumes are some examples of nutritious, high-fiber foods that you can enjoy as part of a healthy diet.

SUMMARY Eating more fiber can enhance feelings of fullness to reduce hunger and increase overall weight loss.

4. Add Protein to Your Diet

Increasing your intake of protein is another simple way to curb cravings and keep your appetite under control. This, in turn, may support weight management and help you reduce excess body fat.

A study in 20 young women found that eating a high-protein breakfast reduced hunger, increased fullness, and decreased levels of ghrelin, the hormone that stimulates hunger.

Another small study showed that consuming more quality protein at meals was associated with less belly fat. This suggests that a high-protein diet could help improve body composition and increase fat loss.

Meat, poultry, seafood, legumes, eggs, and dairy products are all high-protein ingredients that can help you lose arm fat fast.

SUMMARY Protein can help decrease hunger and increase fullness. Higher protein intake may aid both weight and fat loss.

5. Do More Cardio

Cardio is a type of exercise that focuses on elevating your heart rate to burn calories.

When trying to lose arm fat, including cardio in your daily routine is essential.

Studies show that cardio can be an effective strategy for weight loss and can increase lean body mass.

For example, one study in 141 people showed that pairing 40 minutes of cardio 3 times per week with a weight management program resulted in a 9% decrease in body weight in just 6 months.

It’s typically recommended to do at least 20–40 minutes of cardio per day, or between 150–300 minutes each week.

Jogging, biking, rowing, swimming, jumping rope, and dancing are all activities that can help you meet your daily cardio goals.

SUMMARY Cardio can help increase weight loss and fat burning to help you lose arm fat over time.

6. Cut Down on Refined Carbs

Refined carbs are carbohydrates that have undergone processing, resulting in a final product that is lower in several key vitamins and minerals.

Typically, refined carbs are high in calories but low in fiber, which can cause blood sugar levels to increase more rapidly and result in hunger.

While whole grain intake is associated with decreased weight gain and body fat, eating more refined grains has been linked to increased body fat.

Examples of refined carbs that are often lacking in nutrients include pasta, white bread, breakfast cereals, and other pre-packaged ingredients.

Instead, select whole-grain foods like quinoa, buckwheat, barley, oats, sorghum, and spelt and enjoy in moderation.

SUMMARY Refined carbs are low in nutrients and may be linked to weight gain and increased body fat. Focus on whole-grain foods instead and enjoy them in moderation.

7. Set a Sleep Schedule

Aside from making modifications to your diet and exercise regimen, getting enough sleep each night is another important factor to consider for losing arm fat.

Several studies have found that sleep plays a role in regulating appetite and may also enhance weight loss.

For instance, one study in nine men found that just one night of sleep deprivation caused increased feelings of hunger and higher levels of ghrelin, a hormone that stimulates appetite.

Another small study showed that participants who slept 5.5 hours each night lost 55% less weight. Moreover, they lost 60% more lean body mass than those who slept 8.5 hours per night.

Try setting a regular sleep schedule by going to bed at the same time throughout the week, avoiding distractions before bed, and minimizing your exposure to stimulants like nicotine and caffeine.

SUMMARY Not getting enough sleep can increase hunger and slow down weight loss, which could prevent fat loss in the arms.

8. Stay Hydrated

Drinking plenty of water each day is very important when it comes to losing arm fat.

Some research suggests that drinking water with meals could promote feelings of fullness and decrease the total amount of food and the number of calories consumed.

Water may also help temporarily increase metabolism, with one study showing that drinking 16.9 ounces (500 ml) of water increased the metabolic rate by 30% for 30–40 minutes.

However, be sure to select water, tea, or other unsweetened beverages instead of sugar-sweetened drinks like soda or juice.

Regular consumption of these high-calorie drinks can quickly cause extra calories to add up and may contribute to weight gain over time.

SUMMARY Drinking water can support weight loss by increasing feelings of fullness, decreasing food intake, and temporarily enhancing metabolism.

9. Do Bodyweight Exercises

If you don’t have access to a gym or are running short on time, doing bodyweight exercises is a great way to enhance muscle tone in your arms and keep them looking slim.

Bodyweight exercises involve using your body as a form of resistance to build up muscle mass and strength.

It’s not only convenient and budget-friendly but can also produce some pretty impressive results.

For example, one study in 23 men found that calisthenics — a type of exercise that involves minimal use of gym equipment — was effective at increasing upper body strength.

Next time you work out, try doing upper-body exercises like tricep dips, planks, and push-ups to build muscle strength and tone your arms.

SUMMARY Bodyweight exercises can help increase muscle mass and strength to keep your arms toned.

The Bottom Line

Although research shows that spot reduction may be ineffective, there are plenty of strategies that you can use to lose arm fat.

In addition to hitting the gym, switching up your diet and maintaining a healthy lifestyle can also play a role in regulating body composition.

Implementing just a few of these changes in your daily routine can support weight loss and help you shed your unwanted arm fat.

Exercises To Lose Arm Fat At Home

As much as we all want it to be true, we can’t pick a place on our body to “spot reduce.” Research has shown that exercises and machines claiming to get rid of love handles or to slim down your thighs are a hoax.

You can’t burn off fat from a specific area of the body with an exercise that targets only one area.

But that doesn’t mean that you can’t slim down your arms, and the rest of your body, with these exercises.

According to the American Council on Exercise, combining cardio, strength training, and a healthy diet is a great way to reduce body fat. These exercises will help you elevate your heart rate, strengthen your arms, and reduce body fat.

1. Arm slide

Arm slides are great for activating your arms (especially your triceps), and they also work your entire core. According to the Mayo Clinic, core exercises like arm slides can improve your overall balance, stability, and body alignment.

Equipment needed: Sliders, paper plates, or two small towels

  1. Kneel with your hands on both sliders. Place a mat under your knees to make this more comfortable, especially if you have sensitive knees or you’re on a hard floor.
  2. Engage your core by pulling your belly button toward your spine and tightening your abs.
  3. Keeping your spine straight and your core engaged, slowly slide your arms in front of you to get your chest close to the ground.
  4. Pull your arms back in, toward your knees, and return to your starting position without bending your elbows. Be careful to not arch your back as you pull your arms in. Throughout the movement, make sure you’re focused on keeping your core engaged and your back straight.


  • You can make this easier by sliding each arm individually.
  • You can also get all of the benefits without touching your chest to the ground. Simply go as low as you can, stopping before:
    • you can no longer pull your hands back in with a straight spine
    • before your chest touches the ground
    • To make it more challenging, slide your arms from a plank and keep your knees off the ground throughout the exercise.

2. Ball slams

This plyometric movement gives you all of the benefits without the pounding. Ball slams are a full-body movement that will fatigue your arms and add a little cardio to your workout.

Equipment needed: Medicine ball or slam ball

  1. Stand with your feet hip-width apart and hold the ball at your chest.
  2. Lift the ball up and slightly behind your head.
  3. Bend your knees and actively throw the ball down on the ground as hard as you can.
  4. Catch the ball as it bounces back up (or scoop it up if it doesn’t bounce) and bring it back up over your head. All the while, keep your spine straight and use your knees to lift you back up.
  5. Begin your next repetition.


  • Before you begin, test your ball to make sure it doesn’t bounce too aggressively. The ball should be relatively heavy, but not so heavy that you can’t perform the whole movement with your back straight.
  • This movement should be done fluidly. Once you finish a rep, use the slight bounce of the ball to launch you into the next set. Do your best to keep moving through these repetitions to keep your heart rate up and the movements fluid.
  • Start with as many reps as possible in 20 to 30 seconds for three to five sets. Be sure to take adequate rest between sets.
  • Stop when you’re fatigued and can no longer safely hold the ball over your head or keep your spine straight throughout the movement.

The National Strength and Conditioning Association recommends taking 48 hours to recover after a plyometric workout, so be mindful to give your arms a break from intense or high-impact plyometrics until you have recovered.

3. Dumbbell bench press

You don’t have to lift huge weights to get the benefits of a bench press.

Doing a dumbbell bench press challenges your muscles and helps reduce muscle imbalances or weakness between your dominant and nondominant arms. While it’s best known for working your chest, the dumbbell bench press will also strengthen your deltoids, triceps, and lats.

Equipment needed: Two dumbbells and a bench

  1. Lie with your back flat on the bench and feet firmly on the ground. If your feet don’t firmly touch the ground, place plates or a step bench under them to give you a stable position, or put your feet up on the bench.
  2. Keep your spine in a neutral position (your lower back should be slightly curved) by engaging your core.
  3. Pull your shoulder blades away from your ears and slightly together. Your shoulders, hips, and head should be firmly in contact with the bench.
  4. Keep your arms tight against your sides as you raise the dumbbells up. The palm of your hands should face forward throughout the movement or at a 45-degree angle.
  5. Slowly lower the dumbbells back to your chest with your elbows at your sides. Keep your elbows in tight throughout the entire movement to work your triceps.


  • If you don’t have a bench available, you can do these on the floor or on a step bench.

4. Bicep curls with band

Equipment needed: Resistance band

  1. Step on the band so it rests underneath the arch of your foot.
  2. Grab the ends of the band so your palms face forward and your arms are by your side.
  3. With your elbows tight against your ribs, slowly bend your arms to bring your hands to your shoulders.
  4. Slowly lower your hands back down to your sides.


  • Don’t swing or lean back to bring your hands up. Your body should remain completely upright and still except for your arms.

5. TRX or supine barbell rows

Not only will you work your arms with this exercise, but you’ll also strengthen those muscles of your upper back that help to improve posture.

Equipment needed: TRX straps, low gymnastics rings, or an empty barbell and a rack.

  1. Grab the handles and slowly walk backward to get tension on the straps.
  2. With your chest facing the anchor point of the straps, walk your feet toward the straps until you’re at a 45-degree angle. Hold the straps so your palms face forward.
  3. Engage your core like you would in a plank position and keep your body in a straight line while you begin to pull your chest up to the handles. Keep your shoulder blades down, away from your ears, and pulled slightly together.
  4. Once your hands and chest meet, slowly lower back down to your starting position with your entire body in a straight line.


  • Play around with your grip. Palms facing your feet will work your triceps. Palms facing your head will target your biceps.
  • To make the rows easier, stand more upright by walking your feet closer to the anchor point. You should be upright enough that you can keep your hips and back straight throughout the entire movement without arching or bending your spine.
  • If you want more of a challenge, walk your feet farther away from your hands.
  • If you don’t have TRX straps or rings, you can use an empty barbell on a rack. Be careful to position your head under the rack so that you’re pulling the bar back into it instead of toward the front of the hooks. You can adjust the height of the bar to make it easier (up) or harder (down).

6. Narrow push-up

Equipment needed: None.

  1. Start in a plank position with your hands directly under your shoulders and your fingers pointing forward.
  2. Lower down with your elbows at your sides and pointing toward your feet. Keep your shoulders, hips, and knees all in a straight line as you lower your chest to the floor.
  3. Push yourself back up to the start without arching into your lower back. Your shoulders and hips should lift at the same time.


  • To make this easier, you can do these on your knees, or with weight plates or a step bench under your hands.

7. Battle ropes

Burn fat, increase your cardiovascular endurance, and tone your arms all at once with these ropes. Not only will they raise your heart rate and get you sweating, but they’ll also improve your core and shoulder strength.

Equipment needed: Battle ropes

  1. Stand with your feet hip-width apart, knees slightly bent, and back straight.
  2. Grab the ropes and raise your hands together to create a wave.
  3. Try speeding up your hand movements to create smaller waves, or slow things down and move your hands a greater distance to create big waves.
  4. Try to keep the ropes moving for 30 seconds, three times, with rest in between each set.


  • Play with short waves, long waves, moving your arms at the same time, alternating one up and one down, and moving your arms in and out as well as up and down.
  • You can also slam the ropes into the ground like the ball slam above.

The takeaway

These exercises will help you strengthen and tone your arms. They won’t help you melt the fat off your arms, but they can help you lose weight across your whole body and reveal the muscles you worked so hard to build.

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