How Breon Ansley Trains for 20-Inch Arms In His Move to the 212 Division

Ansley looks to add as much mass as his frame can support in his quest for a 2023 Olympia qualification.

Former two-time Classic Physique Olympia champion (2017-18) Breon Ansley is not holding anything back in his move up to the 212 division. Ansley was constantly plagued by the weight cap required in the Classic Physique division, which scales with an athlete’s height — taller athletes can weigh more and, in theory, pack on more muscle if the height difference doesn’t cover the additional allotted pounds.

Ansley packed on the maximum amount of muscle he could at his capped weight. The judges still ranked him behind taller athletes like four-time reigning Olympia champion Chris Bumstead. The only reasonable option for Ansley is to change divisions.

Ansley uploaded a video to his YouTube channel which details his arm training to prepare for his 2023 season as a 212 competitor. Check it out below: 

[Related: Terrence Ruffin On Why Unilateral Pulldowns Stifle Beginner Back Gains]

Why Breon Ansley Is Changing Divisions

Although Ansley secured back-to-back Olympia wins in the Classic Physique division, his weight cap of 185 pounds for his height of five feet, seven inches prevented him from gaining more mass while staying eligible to compete.

This puts Ansley at an inherent disadvantage against guys like Bumstead, Ramon QueirozUrs Kalecinski, and Mike Sommerfeld, who are all over six feet tall — as previously mentioned, taller competitors are allowed to weigh more than shorter competitors.

Moving to the 212 division allows Ansley to pack on as much size as possible without worrying about tipping over the 212 weight cutoff — since that’s well past the range his body can gain in a year.

It is 212 training, putting on as much muscle as possible, not holding anything back, which I have been doing for the last five years.

Without a weight cap to worry about, Ansley plans to maximize the added size he can put on — and the caloric surplus that comes with that goal. He intends to grow everywhere except for the waist. 

[Related: Brenda Farias Wins 2023 Musclecontest Campinas Bikini Pro Bodybuilding Show]

Breon Ansley’s Men’s 212 Arm Training Tips 

To start his massive arm day, Ansley noted that it’s critical to train triceps more than biceps since triceps comprise three muscles while the biceps contain two. 

Rotate Wrists on Cable Bent-Over Tricep Extensions

The first movement was the cable bent-over triceps extension. He turns his wrists forward at the end of the extension to contract more of the lower portion of the triceps. 

Stay Stable on Dumbbell Skull Crushers

Ansley offered tips on maximizing the effectiveness of dumbbell skull crushers:

  • Stay as strict as possible.
  • Work the hinge.
  • Do not allow any movement from the shoulders or lats.
  • Focus on the eccentric.

The added stability while working the negative allows Ansley to maintain tension on the meat of the triceps for the full range of motion.

I feel like I’m putting on some tissue when I control that negative portion of the lift. That’s a great base for fiber recruitment.

[Related: 6-Time Mr. Olympia Dorian Yates Explains How Smith Machine Squats Outshine Barbell Squats]

Torso Upright on Machine Tricep Extension

Ansley included machine triceps extensions and offered an essential tip on the position of the torso to help bias the triceps without involving the chest

“The difference with the dips when focusing on triceps is the torso is more upright,” said the two-time Olympia champion. “As opposed to chest-focused [dips] when leaning forward 45 degrees, we want [to be closer to] 90 degrees….for triceps.”

The Potential Clash with Clarida

Ansley is working hard to grow his physique for his 212 return — he competed in 212 before Classic Physique existed. Should Ansley win a pro show during the 2023 season — a necessity to qualify for the 212 Olympia in November — there could be an epic showdown in Orlando, FL, between him and the two-time reigning 212 champ Shaun Clarida.

Featured image: @breonma_ on Instagram