4 Examples of Dumbbell Circuit Workouts with PDF

If you’re looking for a workout that combines both strength and cardio workout, then you can perform circuit training with dumbbells.

I’ve shared some of the best examples of dumbbell circuit workouts that will help you build muscle and burn fat at the same time.

You can also incorporate them into your cardio gym training program to level up your overall fitness, especially stamina and muscular endurance.

What is Circuit Training, and How to do it?

A circuit workout is one of the high-intensity training programs that require you to perform a set of exercises in succession with brief rest periods in between.

It allows you to perform more exercises in less time than if you do each exercise individually. So it is excellent for those who have limited time to work out in a day.

A study has shown resistance circuit-based training is a great way to enhance endurance and cardiovascular fitness, decrease total body fat and increase muscle mass, build strength throughout the body, and improve body composition.1Ramos-Campo, Domingo Jesús et al. “Effects of Resistance Circuit-Based Training on Body Composition, Strength and Cardiorespiratory Fitness: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.” Biology vol. 10,5 377. 28 Apr. 2021, doi:10.3390/biology10050377

In circuit training, you can do exercises at your own pace, but it’s best to do it at around 70 percent of the maximum heart rate.

Here’s the formula for calculating heart rate in case you don’t know: 220-age. For example, if you’re 25 years old, your maximum heart rate would be 220-25= 195, and 70% would be around 136 beats per minute.

Benefits of Doing Circuit Workouts with Dumbbells

Dumbbells are good for circuit training for multiple reasons, such as:

  • They are easy to grip and moveable.
  • They provide a greater range of motion and allow you to perform various exercises at high intensity.
  • They allow you to perform unilateral exercises, meaning you can also do single-arm or one-leg exercises.

Top 4 Examples of Dumbbell Circuit Workouts

From beginner to advanced, I’ve created four samples of dumbbell circuit workouts.

If you’re a beginner, you can start with the easy one, and once you progress, you can increase the duration over time.

However, if you’re working out for a while, you can start with whichever you like.

15-minute Full Body Circuit Workout for Beginners

Details about the workout:

  • Duration: 15 minutes
  • Intensity: 60-75% of MHR
  • Number of rounds: 1
  • Interval time between exercises: 30-45 seconds
  • Suitable for: Beginners (Male and Female)

Workout:

How many days a week can you do this? You can perform this 15-minute dumbbell circuit workout seven days a week. But make sure to replace some exercises with new ones.

30-minute Upper/Lower Circuit Workout

By alternating between upper body exercises, such as bicep curls and triceps extensions, and lower body exercises, such as squats and lunges, you’ll be able to work out both your upper and lower body at the same time.

Summary:

You’ll do three rounds of 10 minutes each to complete thirty minutes of circuit training.

  • Duration: 30 minutes
  • Intensity: 70% of MHR
  • Number of rounds: 3
  • Rest between rounds: 3 minutes
  • Interval time between exercises: 30-90 seconds
  • Suitable for: Intermediate (Men and Women)

Circuit 1

ExerciseReps
Overhead Press12
Sumo Squat12
Floor Press12
Leg Curl12
Alternate Bicep Curl12

Circuit 2

ExerciseReps
Bent-over Row12
Step-up12
Lateral Raises12/side
Front Lunges12
French Press12

Circuit 3

ExerciseReps
Dumbbell Pullover10
Dumbbell Deadlift10
One-arm Dumbbell Row10/side
Glute Bridge10
Seated Rear Delt Raise10

How many times a week can you do this workout? You can perform this 30-minute workout four to five times a week.

Note: You can increase the rest time between exercises or decrease the number of reps if you feel over-exhausted.

45-minute Push/Pull/Legs/Core Circuit Workout

dumbbell circuit workouts
45-minute Dumbbell Circuit Training

This 45-minute circuit training includes five rounds, each of which will take 9 minutes to complete.

  • Duration: 45 minutes
  • Intensity: 60-70% of MHR
  • Number of rounds: 5
  • Rest between rounds: 3 minutes
  • Interval time between exercises: 30-60 seconds
  • Suitable for: Intermediate (Men only)
RoundPushPullLegCore
110 Arnold Presses10 Bent-over Rows15 Sumo Squats10 Side Bends
210 Incline Bench Presses10 Pullovers10 Lunges10 Reverse Crunches
310 Lateral Raises10 Single-arm DB Row10 Step up15-sec Russian Twist
410 French Presses10 Hammer Curls10 Leg Curl10 Crunches
510 Single-arm Tricep Extension10 Reverse Flyes10 Calf Raises10-sec Hollow Body

How often can you do this? You can do this 45-minute dumbbell circuit workout three to four times weekly.

Note: It will be challenging and test your endurance level, so make sure you’re ready for this.

60-minute Total Body Circuit Workout

Doing one hour of dumbbell circuit training can be challenging and require decent stamina and muscular endurance. However, if you’re working out for a while, you should try this routine.

It includes four rounds of 15 minutes each, and each round comprises five exercises.

  • Duration: 60 minutes
  • Intensity: 60-70% of MHR
  • Number of rounds: 4
  • Rest between rounds: 3 minutes
  • Interval time between exercises: 30-45 seconds
  • Level: Advanced
  • Target Gender: Men only

Circuit 1

  • 15 Dumbbell Squats
  • 12 Overhead Presses
  • 12 Bent-over Rows
  • 12 Floor Presses
  • 10 Lunges

Circuit 2

Circuit 3

  • 12 Incline Bench Presses
  • 10 One-arm DB Rows/side
  • 12 Rear Delt Flyes
  • 10 Lying Leg Curls
  • 10 Alternate Bicep Curls/arm

Circuit 4

  • 15 Sumo Squats
  • 10-sec Hollow Body
  • 10 Single-arm Tricep Extension/side
  • 10 Alternate Hammer Curl/hand
  • 10 Straight-arm Crunches

How many days a week can you perform this? It will be intense circuit training, so doing it three times a week would be enough.

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Final Thoughts

Doing circuit training with dumbbells helps boost strength, endurance, and cardiovascular health, decreases total body fat, increases muscle mass, and helps you get in shape.

This training is also ideal for those who have a limited amount of time to work out.

In this article, I’ve shared some of the best dumbbell circuit workouts that will help you train your entire body and improve your overall fitness.

You can start with a 15-minute workout and increase the duration over time.

You can also make changes depending on your fitness level and workout goals.

I’ve also created an ultimate 72-day dumbbell workout plan to help you build muscles and improve your fitness at home. So, you can check that out as well.

Please note: Circuit training is demanding on the lungs and heart and makes you feel out of breath, so it’s best to consult with your fitness consultant before starting the program.

References

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Murshid Akram
I'm a certified personal trainer, fitness blogger, and nature lover. I always learn more about exercise science and human anatomy so that I can provide the best information possible. I share science-based, practical, and logical information that can help you achieve your desired fitness goal.