What are dumbbell exercises
The dumbbell is a piece of sports equipment on which weights in the form of discs are hung. They are suitable for gymnastics, cardio training, weight training or bodybuilding. A distinction is made between dumbbells (consisting of a short bar), barbells (consisting of a long bar), SZ dumbbells (consisting of a long, wavy bar) and ladder dumbbell (consisting of parallel and diagonal grip variations of the bar; also called triceps dumbbell). Depending on which dumbbell is used, you can perform different dumbbell exercises to target specific areas of your body. With dumbbells only, you can train legs, chest, back, shoulders, biceps, triceps, and even your abdomen – an absolute all-rounder, in fact. All of this can be done in the gym with an instructor or with specific dumbbell exercises at home.
Why should you do dumbbell exercises
There are many reasons to do dumbbell exercises. Most of them have strength and muscle building as their goal. This can be done with dumbbells anywhere, for example, in the comfort of your own home without spending money on a gym. Dumbbell exercises for home can be considered as an alternative to gyms, at least if you combine them with cardio training. For women, these are also suitable, even if muscle building is not the primary goal. Dumbbell exercises can tighten muscles and connective tissue. To achieve this, more repetitions must be done with lighter weight. The result: a sculpted, defined and toned body, which can cause you to look younger. In addition, strength training stimulates the metabolism. Consequently, calories are burned and weight is lost. Strength training also has a positive effect on your health. Do you want to build muscles, or do you prefer to lose weight? Do you just want to stay fit, or do you want to do something for your health? If any of these questions appeal to you, then I would suggest you read on now.
Dumbbell exercises or equipment
In addition to dumbbells, there are also many home fitness machines that are suitable for strength training. What is the difference between these two options and what are the advantages and disadvantages? In a classic gym you can find both, equipment and dumbbells. At home, it would not be financially worthwhile to buy both. Strength training with machines is especially suitable for beginners. The machines are usually labeled with information on how to use them and the muscle group they work. This makes it possible to train specifically by muscle group. In addition, there is the possibility to perform heavier weights without support, which leads to a lower risk of injury. In favor of the so-called free weights is functional training, a form of training that is relevant to everyday life. You can train with complete amplitude of movement, so during dumbbell exercises you are not guided as with the machines. This also trains the stabilizing muscles that are otherwise neglected when training on equipment. As mentioned in the previous paragraph, the financial aspect is also interesting, as dumbbells are cheaper than most fitness equipment. Our recommended product also shows that it can keep up with gym products in terms of quality.
What are the dumbbell exercises
Here I’ll introduce you to a few dumbbell exercises that are ideal for home workouts, how exactly to perform them, what muscle groups are worked and what you need to keep in mind when performing them.
DUMBBELL EXERCISE 1: BICEPS CURLS (BICEPS)
This is one of the most famous dumbbell exercises of all. You hold a dumbbell in each hand. You grab the dumbbell from below (underhand grip) and hold both horizontally. It is important that you stand upright and that your back is straight. Now bend both arms upward without moving the elbow, but only the forearms. A variation would be to lift both dumbbells one after the other instead of at the same time or to focus on one arm first. Because of how easy it is to perform, this exercise is perfect for beginners.
DUMBBELL EXERCISE 2: SINGLE ARM TRICEPS PRESS (TRICEPS)
In this dumbbell exercise you place your hand over a dumbbell (overhand grip), which you hold horizontally. Now bring the arm with the dumbbell vertically up and back to the starting position (body height). During the exercise you have to stand upright and move only the forearms, not the body or the elbow.
DUMBBELL EXERCISE 3: DUMBBELL BENCH PRESS (CHEST)
For this dumbbell exercise, lie on your back on a weight bench and hold a dumbbell in each hand with an overhand grip. The arms are first held at the sides of the body, in line with the chest. Only the forearms are now lifted vertically upward, with the dumbbells horizontal in the hand. To perform the exercise, extend both arms upward, but not completely, otherwise the elbow joints will be too much stressed. Repeat this several times.
DUMBBELL EXERCISE 4: DUMBBELL SHOULDER PRESS (SHOULDER)
In this dumbbell exercise you stand upright with a dumbbell in each hand. Hold the dumbbells with an overhand grip, stretch your arms to the left or right, and stretch your forearms upward to create a right angle. The dumbbells are now brought up and back again. Here you should be careful not to stretch your arms too much.
DUMBBELL EXERCISE 5: DUMBBELL CROSS LIFT (BACK)
In this dumbbell exercise you squat down and hold the dumbbells with the upper grip. Now try to stretch your body. Very important: your back must be straight all the time (not bent)! Your arms must also remain straight at all times. Hold the dumbbells close to your legs.
Tips for training with dumbbells
You now know how to perform which dumbbell exercise. Here I’ll give you a few more tips on what else you need to pay attention to when performing them.
THE RIGHT START
Before you start directly, you should first inform yourself in detail about the dumbbell exercise or about the equipment. You must know exactly how the dumbbell exercise is performed and what posture you must adopt. Otherwise, the wrong execution of an exercise could lead to injury. At the beginning, you should not choose too heavy dumbbells, but focus on the movements. The right grip is also important, the dumbbell should be firm and non-slip in your hand.
THE RIGHT PLACE
Dumbbell exercises can be done anywhere, whether in the gym or at home. The only requirement for the training place is a good stand, which can be ensured with the help of a fitness mat. Another advantage of a mat would be that it cushions the dumbbells in case of a fall.
THE CORRECT EXECUTION
In addition to the exercise-specific execution, there are also general tips to which one must pay attention. One should always work with muscle strength and not body momentum when performing dumbbell exercises. Slow movements with steady breathing minimize the risk of injury.
Once you’re into the rhythm of training, you’ve probably found individual dumbbell exercises that you like best. Nonetheless, it’s important to not just do these dumbbell exercises, but to work all muscle groups, including the often-neglected legs. Also, you should vary the number of repetitions, for example, from 8 to 10 and then to 15, in order to make good progress.
THE RIGHT REGENERATION
In order for you to achieve optimal training results, you should give your muscles a recovery break. Therefore, you should not do strength training two days in a row. However, on these rest days you can go for a casual jog or run on the treadmill instead of doing dumbbell exercises. Rest periods between sets (runs) should also not be too long.
Dumbbell exercises at home are an easy and efficient workout alternative to equipment in gyms. Dumbbells are an absolute all-rounder and are suitable for a wide variety of exercises. You can train not only the biceps and triceps, but also the legs, chest, back or shoulders. Muscle building, losing weight or just keeping fit, everything is possible. This is ideally supplemented with cardio equipment to keep fit conditionally as well.
As I mentioned earlier, it’s worth setting up a home gym. Here I wanted to give you some suggestions on what equipment and products to ideally buy and how best to set up the space. In addition to strength training with dumbbells, it is also important to do endurance training to keep fit. For this purpose, cardio equipment is suitable, with which you can improve your endurance, for example on a treadmill or exercise bike. A weight bench, which can be adjusted to different positions, is essential for training with dumbbells and barbells. The purchase of weight plates is also worthwhile if you want to vary the weight of the dumbbells. A dumbbell rack can be used for storage. Fitness mats are also a must in any gym. There you can do abdominal exercises, for example sit-ups or push-ups. A music system completes the whole thing and your basement could soon become a gym.