The BEST full body workout at home in 30 minutes. Twelve full body dumbbell exercises — from basic squats and push ups, to compound exercises like a lateral lunge and row. Build full body strength at home!
Start standing, feet hip width apart, slightly bent knees. Holding one dumbbell in each hand at your sides.
Step your right leg out to the side as you push your hips back, bending your right knee while leaving your left leg straight. Think of performing a single leg squat with your right leg while your left leg remains straight. Dumbbells frame right foot with knees and toes pointing forward.
Then, drive off your right foot to reverse the movement, pushing back to center.
Lower into a narrow squat (feet no wider than hip distance apart), sitting your hips back as you lower down. Push through your heels to stand tall returning to the starting position.
3. Lateral Squat + Single Arm Row
Targets: Legs, quads, outer glutes (gluteus medius), back (lats) and core.
How to do a Lateral Squat + Single Arm Row:
Start standing in a wide-stance squat, feet outside of shoulders, knees softly bent. Hold a dumbbell in your left hand between your legs.
Transfer your weight into your right leg as you sit your hips back and to the right. Bending your right knee while leaving your left leg straight. Think of performing a single leg squat on your right leg while your left leg remains straight. Knees and toes pointing forward.
Hold your lateral squat on the right as you perform a single arm row with the dumbbell in your left hand, pulling your elbow towards your rib cage.
Then, drive off your right foot to reverse the movement, pushing back to center. Transfer the weight to your right hand as you push your hips back towards the left, sitting into a lateral squat on your left leg.
Perform a single arm row with your right arm. Repeat this pattern.
4. Dumbbell Pullover + Leg Lower
Targets: Back (lats), chest (pecs), core and lower abs.
How to do a Dumbbell Pullover + Leg Lower:
Lay flat on your back with legs full extended overhead (modification: bent at 90 degrees). Hold a dumbbell horizontally between your hands, arms extended overhead.
With a slight bend in the elbows, slowly lower the dumbbells overhead towards the ground. Try to keep your low back pressed into the mat/ground. As you lower the dumbbell, lower one or both of your legs towards the ground.
Then exhale as you pull the dumbbells back overhead while also pulling your legs back to center. Think of pulling your armpits down towards your hips to return back to the starting position.
5. Bicep Curl + Reverse Overhead Press
Targets: Biceps, shoulders (specifically the front head of the shoulders), back and core.
How to do a Bicep Curl + Reverse Press:
Start standing, feet under hips, core engaged, soft bed in the knees. Holding a dumbbell in each hand with palms facing out.
Squeeze your biceps to pull the dumbbells up to shoulder height.
Then press the dumbbells straight overhead, palms still facing in towards your body (reverse press).
With control, lower the dumbbells back to shoulder height and then back down to the starting position.
6. Split Lunges
Targets: Legs, quads, glutes, hamstrings and calves.
How to do a Split Lunge:
Start standing feet hip-distance apart, holding a dumbbell in each hand at your sides, palms facing your body.
Step your right leg forward, then drop your back left knee towards the ground. Lowering your hips until both knees reach a 90 degree angle, front right thigh parallel to the floor. Shoulders remain stacked over hips throughout the entire exercise.
Press into your front right heel stand tall, returning to the starting position.
7. Alternating Front Lunge + Single Arm Curl Press
Targets: Legs, quads, hamstrings, biceps, shoulders, abs and all the stabilizing muscles in the core.
How to do a Front Lunge + Single Arm Press:
Start standing, feet shoulder-width apart with a soft bend in knees. Holding one dumbbell in each hand (palms facing in towards the body).
Step your right foot forward, lowering down until both knees reach a 90 degree angle or right thigh is parallel with the ground. As you step the right foot forward, curl the dumbbell in your left hand up to shoulder height, then press overhead.
With control, reverse the shoulder press, lowering the dumbbell back to shoulder height and back to the starting position. As your arm lowers, press through your right heel to drive back to starting position. Switch sides, repeating on the other side of the body.
8. Plank + Dumbbell Pass
Targets: Entire core, back, shoulders, and arms.
How to do a Plank + Dumbbell Pass:
Start in a high plank position, shoulders over wrists, core engaged. Place a dumbbell outside your right hand.
Engage your core, then reach your left hand underneath your body to grab the dumbbell and pull it through to the left side. Place the dumbbell on the mat outside and just outside where you’ll plant your left hand when you return to high plank.
Switch sides, pulling the dumbbell back to the right with the right hand. Repeat this pattern while holding a high plank.
9. Chest Fly + Skull Crusher
Targets: Chest (pecs), shoulders, and triceps.
How to do a Chest Fly and Skull Crusher:
Lay flat on your back, legs bent at 90 degrees, arms straight overhead holding one dumbbell in each hand, palms facing in.
With a soft bend in the elbows slowly open your arms, lowering the dumbbells in a wide arc until they reach shoulder level (or the ground).
Exhale as you pull the dumbbells back to starting position. Keeping your chest puffed out. This is a chest fly.
Once back to the starting position, perform a skull crusher by bending at the elbows to lower the dumbbells towards your forehead. Then squeeze the back of your arm (triceps) to press the dumbbells back overhead to return to the starting position.
Alternate performing one chest fly and one skull crusher.
10. Staggered Deadlift + Squat
Targets: Legs, hamstrings, glutes, hips, quads and core.
How to do a Staggered Deadlift + Narrow Squat:
Stand with feet hip-width apart, hold one dumbbell in each hand at your thighs, palms facing your body.
Stagger your feet, so your right leg is slightly in front of your left foot. Kickstand your back left foot, left heel floating off the ground.
Keep 80% of your weight in your front right foot, 20% in your back left toe.
With a soft bend in the knees, hinge at your hips to lower your torso as you slide the dumbbells down your legs. Think about pushing your hips back behind you.
Hinge until you feel a stretch in the back of your front right leg (range of motion will be different for everyone). Then drive through your front right heel to stand up straight; returning to the starting position.
Maintain a staggered stance as you lower your hips down, sitting back into a staggered squat. Push through the heel of your right foot to return to standing.
Continue to alternate one staggered deadlift and one staggered squat.
11. Push Up + Dumbbell Burpee
Targets: Chest, shoulders, triceps, legs, glutes, quads, hamstrings, abs and core. A compound dumbbell exercise to build full body strength.
How to do a Push Up + Dumbbell Burpee:
Start in a high plank position, hands on dumbbells, core engaged.
Elbows fall back towards your body as you lower your chest towards the ground for a push up. Press back up to high plank.
Step or jump your feet outside of your hands, landing in a loaded squat position.
Then drive through your heels to stand, holding one dumbbell in each hand (palms face in).
Lower into a squat to return the dumbbells to the mat; then step or jump your feet back to high plank position.
12. Seated Twist with Dumbbell
Targets: Upper abs, lower abs, obliques, core and hips.
How to do a Seated Twist with Dumbbell:
Start in a seated position, sitting on your sit bones as you lean back; heels resting on the ground (option to float one or both feet to increase intensity).
Holding a dumbbell in your right hand, pull your right elbow back towards your right hip as you rotate through your torso to tap the dumbbell to the mat near your right hip.
Use your obliques and abs to return to center. Then transfer the dumbbell to your left hand.
Pull your left elbow back towards your left hip as you rotate through your torso to tap the dumbbell to the mat near your left hip.
Repeat this pattern.
How to Build Full Body Workout Routines
As mentioned at the top of this post, I believe a comprehensive full-body training sessions should include compound exercises that target multiple muscle groups at a time, including:
Upper Body Exercises
Push Exercises for the chest, shoulders and triceps (think overhead press, bench press and push ups).
Pull Exercises for the back and biceps (think back rows and bicep curls).
Lower Body Exercises
Knee-Dominate Exercise that target the quad and glute muscles supporting the knees (think squats and lunges).
Hip-Dominate Exercise that target the hamstring and glute muscles supporting the hips (think deadlifts and swings).
Bilateral and Unilateral Exercises
Bilateral Exercises require both limbs to produce force at the same time (think deadlift or double arm back row).
Unilateral Exercises work one side of the body at a time and require increased core engagement (think single leg deadlift or single arm back row).
Full Body Exercises in ALL Planes of Motion
Sagittal Plane – forward and backwards movements like forward and reverse lunges.
Frontal Plane – side-to-side movements like lateral lunges or lateral raises.
Transverse Plane – rotation or twisting of the spine movements like a seated twist.
The above list of exercises is the perfect combination for a full body workout that builds muscle and burns fat!
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