10 Exercises To Get Rid of Bat Wings

10 Exercises To Get Rid of Bat Wings

Today, we’re tackling a topic that's a common concern for many of us, especially as we age — those pesky "bat wings." While this term might read a bit funny, if you're dealing with this issue, you know it's no laughing matter. 

However, we want to reassure you that it's completely possible to tone your arms and regain confidence in your appearance. Let's roll up our sleeves (pun intended) and dive into everything about bat wings.

What Are Bat Wings?

"Bat wings" is a slang term that refers to the loose skin or extra fat that tends to sag or droop from the upper arms. This arm fat is particularly noticeable when your arms are extended or raised. 

Unfortunately, the issue of flabby arms is more common than you might think, affecting many people as they get older or go through weight changes. It can make some feel self-conscious, especially when wearing sleeveless tops or dresses.

What Causes Bat Wings?

Bat wings can be attributed to several factors:

  • Age 
  • Decreased muscle tone 
  • Increased body fat

As we age, our skin naturally loses some of its elasticity, which can lead to sagging. Simultaneously, muscle tone may also decrease if we're not regularly engaging in strength training exercises, leading to less firmness in our upper body, including the arms.

Additionally, if you carry extra body fat — especially in the upper arms — you might notice the appearance of bat wings. This is because fat distribution is largely determined by genetics, and some people are predisposed to carry extra weight in their arms. 

It's also important to remember that arm fat is not isolated from the rest of the body — it's a part of overall body fat, which also includes belly fat and flab in other areas. A holistic approach to burning more fat can help you tighten up areas across your entire body.

Can You Get Rid of Bat Wings With Exercise?

Absolutely, yes! While it's important to understand that you can't spot-reduce body fat, there are a variety of tricep exercises that can lead to more toned arms. Targeting your tricep muscles with strength training can help improve the appearance of bat wings by creating a firmer, more sculpted look.

Furthermore, when you pair upper body exercises with regular cardio workouts, you may also promote full body fat loss, which will further enhance the results. Cardio exercises increase your heart rate and boost your metabolism, helping you burn calories and reduce overall body fat, including that pesky arm fat.

So, while the term "bat wings" might sound daunting, remember that with the right approach and consistency, you can tone your arms, improve your overall body composition, and experience a host of other benefits!

10 Effective Exercises To Get Rid of Bat Wings

Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s get into the 10 best exercises to help sculpt your arms:

1. Tricep Dips

Tricep dips target the back of the arms, helping to build muscle tone where those bat wings love to hang out.

How to do it:

  1. Begin by sitting on the edge of a bench or chair, with your hands next to your hips, palms facing down, and fingers gripping the edge.
  2. Move your glutes off the bench, keeping your body close to the bench.
  3. Lower your body by bending your elbows until they're at a 90-degree angle.
  4. Push your body back up to the starting position — that's one rep. Aim for 10 to 15 reps.

2. Push-Ups

Push-ups are a full-body workout that uses your body weight to grow several groups of muscles in your body, including your upper arms.

How to do it:

  1. Start in a plank position with your hands shoulder-width apart.
  2. Lower your body until your chest nearly touches the floor, keeping your body in a straight line.
  3. Push your body back up to the starting position. 
  4. If you're a beginner, it may be best to start with modified push-ups on your knees.

3. Tricep Kickbacks

This exercise targets the triceps effectively, helping to reduce bat wings:

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Stand with your feet hip-width apart, holding dumbbells in your hands.
  2. Bend forward slightly at the waist and bend your elbows at a 90-degree angle.
  3. Extend your arms straight back, then return to the 90-degree angle position. 

4. Arm Circles

Arm circles are a great no-equipment exercise for toning your arms.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, extending your arms out to the sides at shoulder height.
  2. Make small circles with your arms, about one foot in diameter.
  3. Do this for 30 seconds, then reverse the direction of the circles for another 30 seconds.

5. Bicep Curls

Bicep curls are classic arm exercises that can help tone your upper arms.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, holding dumbbells in your hands with your palms facing forward.
  2. Keeping your upper arms stationary, bend your elbows and curl the weights toward your shoulders.
  3. Slowly lower the weights back to the starting position. 

6. Diamond Push-Ups

Diamond push-ups target your triceps, helping to shape the back of your arms.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Start in a plank position but with your hands close together so your thumbs and index fingers form a diamond shape.
  2. Lower your body until your chest nearly touches the floor.
  3. Push your body back up to the starting position. 

7. Plank to Push-Up

This exercise engages multiple muscle groups, including your upper arms and core.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Start in a forearm plank position.
  2. Push up from one arm to a push-up position, followed by the other arm.
  3. Lower back down to the forearm plank, one arm at a time. 

8. Lateral Raises

Lateral raises work the shoulders and also engage the upper back and arms.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Stand with your feet hip-width apart, holding a dumbbell in each hand at your sides.
  2. Keeping your arms straight, lift the weights out to the sides until they're at shoulder height.
  3. Lower the weights back to your sides. 

9. Bent-Over Rows

Bent-over rows target your upper back, but they also work your biceps, making them a great exercise for toning your arms.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Stand with your feet hip-width apart, holding a dumbbell in each hand.
  2. Bend at the waist, keeping your back straight, and let your arms hang down.
  3. Pull the dumbbells up to your chest, squeezing your shoulder blades together.
  4. Lower the weights back down.

10. Resistance Band Exercises

Resistance bands are versatile tools for arm workouts. You can do a variety of exercises, like bicep curls, tricep kickbacks, and more.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. For a bicep curl, stand on the resistance band and hold the ends in your hands. Curl your hands toward your shoulders, then lower them back down.
  2. For a tricep kickback, stand on the band, bend at the waist, and hold the ends of the band. Extend your arms straight back, then return to the starting position.

Tips for Creating a Workout Routine

Let's talk a little about creating an effective workout routine. Having a solid plan in place is crucial for achieving your fitness goals. Here are some tips to guide you on this journey:

Set Clear Goals

Start by identifying what you want to achieve. Do you want to tone your arms, lose weight, or improve your overall fitness? Having clear goals will guide your workout routine and keep you motivated.

Start Slow

If you're new to exercise, it's important to start slowly to prevent injuries. Begin with lighter weights and fewer repetitions, gradually increasing both as your strength and endurance improve.

Warm-Up and Cool-Down

Every workout should start with a warm-up to prepare your body for exercise and end with a cool-down to help your body recover. This can prevent injuries and improve your workout performance.

Consistency Is Key

Regular workouts are more important than sporadic, intense ones. Try to establish a consistent exercise routine, aiming for at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous activity each week, as recommended by most health and fitness professionals.

Mix It Up

Variety is the spice of life, and this holds true for your workout routine, too. Mixing up your exercises can prevent boredom and plateauing, ensuring your muscles are constantly challenged.

Monitor Progress

Keep track of your progress. This can be a powerful motivator as you see your strength increase and your body change. Consider working with a personal trainer who can provide professional guidance and support.

What Else Can Help Get Rid of Bat Wings?

While exercise is important, it's just one piece of the puzzle. Here are some other factors to consider.

Healthy Eating

Proper nutrition is key in providing your body with the energy it needs for workouts as well as reducing body fat and building muscle. Fuel your body with nutrient-dense foods, focusing on lean proteins, fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. If you’re unsure where to start, then it might be worth consulting with a nutritionist. 


Staying hydrated is essential, especially around your workouts. Water helps regulate body temperature, lubricate joints, and transport nutrients for energy and health.

Adequate Sleep

Don't underestimate the power of a good night's sleep. Your body needs time to rest and recover, and this happens primarily during sleep. Aim for seven to nine hours per night to ensure you're giving your body the rest it needs.

Cardio Exercises

Regular cardiovascular exercise is important for overall body fat loss. Activities like brisk walking, jogging, or high-intensity interval training (HIIT) can increase your heart rate and help burn calories.

Stress Management

High stress levels can hinder your fitness goals. Incorporate stress management techniques into your routine, such as yoga, meditation, or deep breathing exercises.

Limit Alcohol

Excessive alcohol can lead to weight gain and can also have a negative impact on muscle recovery and growth. Limiting alcohol can support your fitness goals and overall health.

The Takeaway

Bat wing arms may be a common issue, but they're not something you have to live with. By incorporating these exercises into your daily routine, you can tone your arms and improve your overall fitness. Remember, your journey to wellness is unique, and every step you take brings you closer to your health goals.

If you're looking to further support your efforts, consider exploring our weight loss programs. They're designed to help you achieve your health and wellness goals, providing you with the tools and guidance you need to succeed. 

So, go ahead and embrace the power of exercise and nutrition with me, Dr. Kellyann!


Bat Wings and Muffin Tops: How Women Play into Their Own Body Shaming | Huff Post

Genetics of Body Fat Distribution: Comparative Analyses in Populations with European, Asian and African Ancestries | PMC

Exercise: How Much Do I Need Every Day? | Mayo Clinic

How Sleep Works - How Much Sleep Is Enough? | NHLBI

Alcohol Consumption and Obesity: An Update | PMC