Strengthen your Upper Body PULL muscles with this BACK and BICEPS Workout at home! Super-setting back exercises, bicep exercises AND Cardio Tabata intervals. The ultimate dumbbell arm workout for defined back and biceps at home.
From back rows to biceps curls, this is STRENGTH TRAINING for your back and biceps with dumbbells. No fancy gym machines needed.
Pull Workout FAQs
Should You Train Back And Biceps Together?
Yes! Back and biceps are two arm muscles that you use for ‘pulling movements.’ Your back and bicep muscles contract when you pull the weight towards you. So it’s ideal to pair these two muscle groups together in a back and bicep superset workout.
Why Pair Upper Body Strength And Cardio?
Studies show that people who include both weight training and cardio exercises (like HIIT) in their weekly exercise routine have the best overall results in terms of weight loss, strength and cardio endurance. I personally like to pair cardio with an upper body strength day because you get the muscle building benefits of strength training AND the calorie burning benefits of HIIT training.
35-Minute Pull Workout
SplitStrong 35 Day 7
Back and biceps workout for building upper body strength and defined arms at home.
Four dumbbell back exercise and three dumbbell bicep exercises combined with heart-pumping cardio tabata intervals!
This back and bicep superset workout for women is the perfect strength and cardio combo.
A medium-to-heavy set of dumbbells.
I recommend 8-25 lbs depending on your fitness level. I’m using 15 and 20 lb dumbbells in this workout video. The last 2-3 reps of each exercise should feel challenging to complete; that means you chose the right weights.
Shop My Dumbbells
I’m using 15 and 20 lb dumbbells in this back and biceps workout.
Targets: The largest back muscle, latissimus dorsi (or lats); biceps and core.
How To Do A Bent Over Back Row (Single, Single, Double)
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent. Hold a dumbbell in each hand, palms facing in towards each other.
Hinge forward at the hips maintaining a flat back, and belly button pulled back towards your spine.
Pull the dumbbell in your right hand back towards your right hip (think of pulling from your elbow versus your wrist). Stop once your right elbow is in line with your rib cage, making a straight line from shoulder to elbow.
Hold the row at the top for a moment squeezing your shoulder blade down and back. With control, lower the dumbbell back to the starting position.
Repeat with the dumbbell in your left hand.
Then, squeeze your shoulder blades together as you row both dumbbells towards your rib cage (the “double” row).
Targets: The arms, back (lats), abs and core.
Note, this is one of the only dumbbell back exercises that creates lateral flexion (like using the lat pulldown machine).
How To Do A Dumbbell Pullover
Lay flat on your back with legs bent at 90 degrees. Hold one or two dumbbells in your hands with arms extended overhead (one dumbbell horizontally or two dumbbells vertically).
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.
Then exhale as you pull the dumbbell(s) overhead, engaging the lats. Think of pulling your armpits down towards your hips to return back to the starting position.
Modification: Hold one dumbbell horizontally (one head of the dumbbell in each hand) instead of using two dumbbells.
Single Arm Back Fly
Targets: The rear delts (rear shoulders), and major upper back muscles including the rhomboids and trapezius.
How To Do A Single Arm Back Fly
Stand with your feet hip-width apart, knees slightly bent. Option to keep feet parallel or take a slightly staggered stance to better support your low back (stepping your right leg slightly behind your left leg, as pictured above).
Hold one dumbbell in your left hand at your left hip; palm facing in.
Hinge forward at the hips, and pull the dumbbell out to the left side of your body, up to shoulder-height. Keep a soft bend in your left elbow and squeeze your left shoulder blade.
Lower the dumbbell back to the starting position with control.
Switch sides and repeat on the right arm.
Modification: Option to place your non-working hand on a chair or bench for additional core and balance support.
Flip Grip Bicep Curl
Targets: The bicep muscles (upper arms). The brachialis (mid-arm) and brachioradialis (forearm).
How To Do A Flip Grip Bicep Curl
Start standing with feet hip-width apart and core engaged. Hold a dumbbell in each hand at your sides, palms facing outward (underhand grip or supine curl).
Keeping your elbows locked by your sides, squeeze your bicep muscle to curl the weights up to shoulder-height.
At the top of the movement, rotate your hands so palms face in towards each other (hammer curl). With control, slowly lower the dumbbells down to your sides.
At the bottom of your movement, flip your grip so palms face out again. Return to the starting position and repeat this movement.
4 Bicep Curls And Isometric Bicep Hold
Targets: The bicep muscles. While one arm is working through movement the other arm is recruiting bicep strength in an isometric hold.
How To Do Bicep Curls And Isometric Half Curls
Start standing with feet shoulder-width apart and core engaged. Hold one dumbbell in each hand at your sides, palms facing out (standard bicep curl grip).
Keeping your elbows locked by your sides, hold the dumbbell in your left hand in a half curl (elbow bent at 90-degree angle).
Then squeeze your right bicep to curl the dumbbell in your right hand up to shoulder height. Repeat for four bicep curls on your right arm.
Then, switch sides. Hold the dumbbell in your right hand at a 90-degree angle as you perform four bicep curls on your left arm.
Repeat this pattern.
3-Way Back Row (Wide Row, Narrow Row, Reverse Grip Row)
Targets: Upper back, mid-back, lower back (lats, rhomboids, traps, rear delts), and biceps.
How To Do A 3-Way Back Row (Wide Row, Narrow Row, Reverse Grip Back Row)
Stand with your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent.
Hinge forward at the hips with a neutral spine, core engaged.
Grip a set of dumbbells, palms facing in towards your body (wide row position).
Pull your elbows wide towards the ceiling, squeezing your shoulder blades together as you bring your elbows parallel to shoulders. Control the dumbbells back down to the starting position.
Rotate your palms to face in towards each other (narrow row position). Pull the weights back towards your hips, elbows parallel to ribcage. Return to starting position.
Rotate your palms to face outwards (reverse grip row position). Pull the weights back towards your hips, elbows parallel to ribcage.
Return to starting position and repeat this 3-way row pattern.
Alternating Hammer Curls
Targets: Both heads of the bicep muscle as well as the forearm muscles.
How To Do Alternating Hammer Curls
Start standing feet hip-width apart and core engaged. Hold a dumbbell in each hand at your sides, palms facing in towards each other (hammer curl).
Keeping your elbows locked by your sides, alternate single hammer curls on each side, squeezing your bicep muscles to curl the weights up to shoulder-height as you exhale.
Your goal is to constantly be in motion – as one dumbbell gets to shoulder height and starts lowering, the other hand should begin to raise.
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