60 minute beginner upper body workout with dumbbells

Here's everything you need to try our 60 minute beginner upper body workout with dumbbells. For each circuit, complete each exercise one after the other and repeat it for 3 rounds before continuing on to the next circuit.

60 min read
Sean Klein Photo
Created by
Sean Klein
Last updated
09/02/24
In This Workout
  • Circuit 1
  • Reverse Flies
  • DB Floor Press
  • Tall Kneeling Single Arm DB Press
  • Circuit 2
  • Single Arm Hammer Curl
  • Half Kneeling DB Press
  • Single Arm DB Floor Press
  • Circuit 3
  • Tall Kneeling Dual Hand DB Press
  • Half Kneeling Arnold Press

Circuit 1

Complete this round 3 times.

Reverse Flies

Complete 8 repetitions

Coaching Tips For Reverse Flies

Follow these cues to perform Reverse Flies correctly:

  • Hinge into position, making sure the lower back is arched and chest perpendicular with the floor
  • Use the muscles in the upper back
  • Do not add any momentum.

DB Floor Press

Complete 10 repetitions

The dumbbell floor press is an effective horizontal pressing variation, especially for beginners just getting into resistance training.

Benefits of DB Floor Press

The main benefit of the dumbbell floor press is its ability to create different types of stimulus in the horizontal pressing movement pattern.

How To Do DB Floor Press

  1. Lye on the floor with the feet securely connected to the ground.
  2. Start with the dumbbells out in front with the elbows locked.
  3. Lower the elbows towards the floor creating an arrow head with the elbows and head (this means the elbows don’t flare out but also that they don’t come too close to the body).
  4. Gently touch the elbows to the floor, but do not lose tension in the upper body and rest the elbows on the floor.
  5. Press the dumbbells back to the starting position.

Coaching Tips For DB Floor Press

Follow these cues to perform DB Floor Press correctly:

  • Touch elbows gently to the floor
  • Lock elbows at the top.

Tall Kneeling Single Arm DB Press

Complete 14 repetitions

Coaching Tips For Tall Kneeling Single Arm DB Press

Follow these cues to perform Tall Kneeling Single Arm DB Press correctly:

  • Keep rib cage tucked at all times
  • Finish with the biceps next to the ears.

Circuit 2

Complete this round 3 times.

Single Arm Hammer Curl

Complete 12 repetitions

Coaching Tips For Single Arm Hammer Curl

Follow these cues to perform Single Arm Hammer Curl correctly:

  • Do not use any momentum
  • Isolate the biceps
  • Keep the elbows in a fixed position.

Half Kneeling DB Press

Complete 10 repetitions

The half kneeling dumbbell press is an excellent unilateral vertical press variation for all abilities.

Benefits of Half Kneeling DB Press

The primary benefit is the strength gained in the shoulder, improving the vertical press strength. The secondary benefit is the core adaptation through resisting rotation.

How To Do Half Kneeling DB Press

  1. Find a stable half kneeling position with the knee at
  2. degrees.
  3. Start with the dumbbell at the shoulder, with the elbow facing slightly away from the body.
  4. Press the dumbbell overhead and lock the elbow to move through the full range of motion.
  5. Move back to the starting position with control. Do not let the weight pull you out of position.

Coaching Tips For Half Kneeling DB Press

Follow these cues to perform Half Kneeling DB Press correctly:

  • Create a stable base in the lunge position, with the front knee at 90 degrees
  • Keep the rib caged tucked and lock the elbow overhead.

Single Arm DB Floor Press

Complete 12 repetitions

Coaching Tips For Single Arm DB Floor Press

Follow these cues to perform Single Arm DB Floor Press correctly:

  • Touch elbows gently to the floor
  • Lock elbows at the top
  • Keep other hand on ribs.

Circuit 3

Complete this round 3 times.

Tall Kneeling Dual Hand DB Press

Complete 10 repetitions

Coaching Tips For Tall Kneeling Dual Hand DB Press

Follow these cues to perform Tall Kneeling Dual Hand DB Press correctly:

  • Finish with the biceps next to the ears
  • Lock the elbows at the top of each repetition.

Half Kneeling Arnold Press

Complete 10 repetitions

The half kneeling arnold press is a good vertical press variation, especially for those who are training at home with limited equipment.

Benefits of Half Kneeling Arnold Press

The main benefit of the half kneeling Arnold press is it’s ability to build muscle in the shoulders and add variety to a home training set up.

How To Do Half Kneeling Arnold Press

  1. Find a stable half kneeling position (which knee is planted doesn’t make to much of a different, if you want to change each round go ahead, if not thats also fine).
  2. Start with the palms of the hands facing the shoulders.
  3. As you lift the weights overhead twist the hands so the palms are facing away from the body.
  4. Move back to the starting position with control.

Coaching Tips For Half Kneeling Arnold Press

Follow these cues to perform Half Kneeling Arnold Press correctly:

  • Start with your palms facing your sternum and rotate outwards as you press
  • Finish with the biceps next to the ears.

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This workout was made by Sean Klein

Sean Klein

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