Dumbbell Compound Exercises List and How to Do Them

Dumbbell compound exercises are a great way to strengthen and tone muscles. They work on various muscles simultaneously and promote muscle growth. In this article, I’ve shared a complete list of full body dumbbell compound exercises. And you’ll also see how to do the 10 best compound exercises with dumbbells that will help you build a muscular body.

So if you’re fitness enthusiasts who exercise at home with dumbbells, then this post will be useful for you in a couple of ways.

Firstly, it will help you design your own dumbbell compound workout plan with the help of a compound dumbbell exercises list.

And secondly, doing the compound dumbbell workouts that I’ve included in this article with how-to instructions will help you improve overall fitness.

Related: List of All Compound Exercises

List of Dumbbell Compound Exercises

Below is the list of full-body dumbbell compound exercises with the names of the muscle they work on.

List Of Dumbbell Compound Exercises
List Of Dumbbell Compound Exercises
  1. DB Squat to Calf Raise
    1. Quad
    2. Calves
    3. Core
  2. Dumbbell Floor Press
    • Chest
    • Triceps
    • Core
  3. One-arm Dumbbell Rowing
  4. Dumbbell IYT Raises
    • Back
    • Shoulder
  5. Dumbbell Pullover
    • Chest
    • Back
    • Shoulder
  6. DB Drag Curl
  7. Dumbbell Arnold Press
    • Shoulder
    • Triceps
    • Biceps
  8. Dumbbell Deadlift
    1. Quadriceps
    2. Hamstrings
    3. Back
    4. Glutes
  9. DB Bulgarian Split Squat
    • Quadriceps
    • Hamstrings
    • Glutes
  10. Incline DB Overhead Extension
    • Triceps
    • Shoulders
  11. Dumbbell Crossover Curl to Extension
  12. Incline Dumbbell Bench Press
    • Chest
    • Shoulder
    • Triceps
  13. Dumbbell Zottoman Curl
    • Biceps
    • Forearms
  14. Dumbbell Man maker
    • Fully body
  15. DB Squeeze Press
    • Chest
    • Triceps
    • Core
  16. Dumbbell Surrenders
    • Full body
  17. Dumbbell Lunges to Hammer Curl
    • Lower Body
    • Biceps
  18. DB Squat to Overhead Press
    • Lower Body
    • Shoulders
  19. Dumbbell  Squat to Swing
    • Lower Body
    • Shoulders
  20. Dumbbell Hip Thrust
    • Hips
    • Glutes
    • Hamstrings
    • Lower Back
  21. DB Inverted Row
    • Back
    • Shoulder
  22. Dumbbell Burpee
    • Fully Body
  23. Dumbbell deadlift to Upright Row
    • Lower Body
    • Upper Trap
    • Shoulder
  24. DB Bent-Over Reverse Fly
    • Rear Delt
    • Back
  25. Dumbbell Good Morning
    • Hamstrings
    • Lower Back
    • Glutes
  26. Dumbbell RDL
    • Hamstrings
    • Lower Back
    • Glutes
  27. Single Arm Dumbbell Landmine Press
    • Chest
    • Shoulder
    • Triceps
  28. Standing Dumbbell Y Raises
    • Shoulder
    • Back
  29. Dumbbell T Pushup
    • Chest
    • Arms
    • Shoulder
    • Back
  30. Weighted Pushup to Row
    • Chest
    • Arms
    • Shoulder
    • Back
  31. Dumbbell Side Plank
    • Oblique
    • Rectus Abdominish
  32. Dumbbell Rusian Twist
    • Oblique
    • Rectus Abdominish

The 10 Best Dumbbell Compound Exercises For Full Body Training

Whether you want to build strength and mass or lose weight, compound dumbbell exercises will help you achieve your fitness goal.

Doing dumbbell compound workouts at a fast pace will help you lose weight, ensuring no muscle loss. And performing them at a normal pace will promote muscle growth.

So let’s take a look at a list of the 10 best compound dumbbell exercises with step-by-step instructions on how to do them.

  1. Dumbbell Squat To Calf Raise
  2. Arnold Press
  3. Dumbbell Drag Curl
  4. Dumbbell Pullover
  5. DB Good Morning
  6. Dumbbell Bulgarian Split Squat
  7. Dumbbell Crossover Curl
  8. DB Deadlift to Upright Row
  9. Dumbbell Squeeze Press
  10. Dumbbell Bent-Over Reverse Fly

These dumbbell compound workouts will train your full body; from the chest, shoulder, arms to back, leg, and core.

1. Dumbbell Squat to Calf Raise

The dumbbell squat to calf raise is one of the best compound lower body exercises that primarily works on your quadriceps and calves.

 You can do this exercise anywhere you like; at home or in the gym. You only need a pair of dumbbells and a little space.

How to do dumbbell squat to calf raises

  • Holding one dumbbell in each hand, stand upright with your feet shoulder-width apart.
  • Bend your elbows and hold the dumbbells on your shoulder. This is your starting position.
  • Bend your elbows and push your hip back to lower yourself in the squat position until your butt is parallel to the floor.
  • Now, press into the floor through your feet to stand on your toes, so your heels are off the floor and calves engaged.
  • Stay in the standing position for a couple of seconds and then repeat the all steps to perform the next repetitions.
  • Do three sets of 10 to 15 repetitions each.
  • Use as heavy dumbbell as possible and perform each reps in a controlled manner.

Related: 5 Calf raises Exercise & Benefits

2. Dumbbell Arnold Press

The dumbbell Arnold press is a highly effective compound workout for building upper body strength and muscles.

It works on several muscles at the same time, such as triceps, biceps, upper trap, and especially shoulders.

This exercise named after seven times Mr Olympia champion Arnold Schwarzenegger.

You can do DB Arnold press in seated and standing both position.

The seated one allows you to lift more weight and put less stress on the lower while the standing variation engages the abdominal muscle.

Let’s how to do seated dumbbell Arnold press with step by step instructions

  • Sitting on the edge of a bench, grab a pair of dumbbells with an underhand grip.
  • Hold the dumbbells at your chest level by bending your elbows with your palms are facing the chest. Keep your feet firmly on the ground.
  • Keep your abdominal muscle tight and maintain a straight back. That’s your starting position.
  • Twisting your wrist, press the dumbbells overhead until your arms are fully straight. At the top, your palms will face away and elbows point out to sides.
  • And then twisting your wrist lower the dumbbell in the start your arms are facing your body. This is your one repetition.
  • Do three sets of 10, 8, and 6 repetitions with as heavyweights as possible.

You may also like: The Top 10 Dumbbell Exercises For Shoulders

3. Dumbbell Drag Curl

The dumbbell drag curl is primarily a compound biceps workout but it also works on the forearms, rear delt, and the upper trap.

It is one of my favorite compound dumbbell exercises. I do three to four sets of 6-8 repetitions each, at least once in two weeks.

Doing drag curl will help you increase strength, tone muscles and build mass.

Here are the steps to do dumbbell drag curl

  • Holding one dumbbell in each hand with a neutral grip, stand straight in the normal width stance.
  • Hold your arms straight at your sides with your palms are facing inward.
  • Pulling your elbows back, curl your arms along the side of your body until you feel a full contraction in your biceps.
  • Pause for a moment at the top and then lower the dumbbell to the start. That’s one rep.
  • Do as many reps as you can in three different sets and with as heavier weight as possible.

Related: The 10 Best Dumbbell Biceps Curl Exercises

4. Dumbbell Pullover

The pullover is the best compound exercise you can do with dumbbells to strengthen and build your upper body.

The dumbbell pullover works on several muscles at once such as the chest, lats, shoulder, and core. And will help you develop a muscular physique.

How to do the dumbbell pullover

  • Grab a dumbbell with your hands.
  • Lie on the bench and keep your feet flat on the ground.
  • Hold the dumbbell behind your head with your arms are straight. That’s your starting position.
  • Slightly lift your lower back off the bench, and pull the dumbbell until it comes over your chest. Keep your arms as straight as possible.
  • Squeeze your chest at the top and then lower to the start.
  • Try to do three sets of 10, 8, and 6 repetitions with as heavy dumbbells as you can.

Also read: Top 5 Dumbbell Workouts for Lats

5. Dumbbell Good Morning

The Good Morning is another great dumbbell compound workout you can do to strengthen your posterior lower body muscles.

It works on various muscles at the same time, such as lower back, hamstrings, and glutes.

If you’re a beginner, you can try without dumbbell.

This is one of the best compound exercises you can do with dumbbells for strengthening your lower back at home.

How to do Good Morning with Dumbbell

  • In the standing position, grab the sides of the dumbbell with your arms and hold it on your deltoids.
  • Keep your core tight and back straight. That’s your starting position.
  • To begin the next step, slightly bend your knees, push your hips back and lean forward until you feel a slight stretch in your hamstrings.
  • Pause for a couple of seconds and then slowly return to the starting position.
  • Do as many reps as possible.

Related: 6 Dumbbell Workouts For Lower Back

6. Dumbbell Bulgarian Split Squat

The Bulgarian split squat is super effective workout for the lower body.

It strengthens multiple muscles at the same time. For example, quadriceps, hamstrings, and Glutes engaged when you do Bulgarian split squat.

How to do dumbbell Bulgarian split squat

  • Grab one dumbbell in each hand with a neutral grip, stand upright with your arms straight at your sides and your palms are facing inside.
  • Place the top of your left foot on a bench behind you.
  • Keep your back straight and chest up. That’s the start.
  • Now, lower your hips toward the ground so your right knee comes close to the ground.
  • Press into the floor through your right foot to return to the starting position. This is your one repetition.
  • Do three sets of 12, 10, and 8 repetitions in a controlled fashion.
  • Focus on lower body muscles during the entire movement.

Also read: An Ultimate Guide To The Dumbbell Leg Exercises

7. Crossover Curl to Extension (Best Dumbbell Compound Exercise for arms)

The crossover curl is the best compound workouts for arms you can do with dumbbells. It works on the biceps, triceps, forearm, and wrist at the same time.

Whether you’re a beginner or intermediate, you must include this exercise in your overall compound workout routine.

You can do this compound exercise at home and in the gym, anywhere you like. It only requires one dumbbell and space for standing position.

Here are steps to do the dumbbell crossover curl

  • Holding one dumbbell in each hand with a neutral grip, stand straight in the hip to shoulder width stance. Palms are facing inward.
  • Curl the right arm across your body until your palm faces your left shoulder.
  • And then lower the dumbbell and extend your elbows fully so you feel contraction in your triceps muscles. This is one rep for your right arm.
  • Perform three sets of 12, 10, and 8 repetitions with as heavier weight as possible.
  • To get a better contraction in your triceps muscle, you can stand slightly across, in the staggered position with your working arm in the front position.

You may also like: 10 Best Dumbbell Triceps Exercises For Bigger Arms

8. Dumbbell Deadlift to Upright Row

The dumbbell deadlift to upright row is an effective full body compound dumbbell exercise that works on the shoulder and traps in the upper body; and hamstrings, quads, and glutes in the lower body.

How to do deadlift to upright row with dumbbells

  • Holding one dumbbell in each hand with an overhand grip, stand straight in the hip width stance.
  •  Keep your arms straight in front of your thighs with your palms are facing inward. This is your starting position.
  • Push your hips back and bend your knees to lower yourself in the full squat position.
  • Now, pushing through your feet into the floor, return to the standing position and bring the dumbbells upright toward your neck so your elbows flare out to the sides. You’ll feel contraction in your upper trap and shoulder muscle. Once your muscle engaged, lower the weight to the start. That’s your one rep.
  • Do three sets of six to eight repetitions each.

You can include this compound dumbbell workout in your weight loss weight training program. And to get the effective result, perform it at your maximum heart rate.


Related: Full Body Dumbbell Workout For Weight Loss

9. Dumbbell Squeeze Press

The squeeze press is one of the best compound dumbbell exercises you can do without a bench at home.

It strengthen and build chest and triceps muscles simultaneously.

It is one of my favorite exercises because, on my chest day, I always do this exercise to end my session.

How to perform dumbbell squeeze press

  • Grab a pair of dumbbells with a neutral grip and lie on the floor with your knees bent.
  • Hold your dumbbells slightly above your chest with your palms are facing each other.
  • Brace your core. And squeezing your chest, press the dumbbells toward the ceiling until your arms are fully straight.
  • Squeeze your pecs at the top, and then lower the weight to the start. This is your one rep.
  • Perform three sets of 12, 10 and 8 repetitions with as heavy dumbbells as you can.

10. Dumbbell Bent Over Reverse Fly

The bent over reverse fly is an efficient compound workout you can do with dumbbells to strengthen and build muscles of the posterior deltoid and the upper back.

How to do the dumbbell bent over reverse fly

  • With one dumbbell in each, stand straight with your feet hip to shoulder width apart.
  • Slightly bend your knees and hinge forwards from your hips to lower your trunk.
  • Keep your arms straight underneath your chest (but do not lock your elbows). Your palms should be facing each other.
  • Keeping your back flat, raise the dumbbells out to the sides until you feel a full contraction in your rear upper body muscles. You can slightly bend your elbows when you fly outwards.
  • Squeeze your shoulder blades at the top and then lower the dumbbell to the start. That’s one repetition.
  • Perform three sets of 12, 10 and 8 repetitions with as heavy dumbbells as you can.

Benefits of Doing Compound Exercises with Dumbbells

You can do plenty of compound workouts with dumbbells at home, as you’ve already seen in this article. Now, you may want to know what are the benefits of performing compound workouts with dumbbells.

So, let’s look at some of the important benefits here.

  1. Dumbbells allow a greater range of motion and help you target muscle more specifically. You can also do a plethora of compound exercises with the help of only one dumbbell.
  2. Training with dumbbells allows two types of overload; mechanic and metabolic. And these two overloads promote muscle growth – according to an article published by the American Council of Exercise (ACE).
  3. Dumbbell exercises work efficiently when it comes to muscle activation. They create inter and intramuscular coordination in the muscles and increase muscle activation.
  4. Doing compound exercises with dumbbells will improve your balance. Compound dumbbell workouts like good morning, single leg RDL, DB pushup to row, and dumbbell T pushup enhance body balance.

Dumbbell Compound Workout Plan For Mass

Here is sample of 4-Day dumbbell compound workout plan that you can do at home.

  • Duration: 30-45 Minutes;
  • Weight: As Heavy As Possible for Muscle Growth, and Light Dumbbells for weight loss;
  • Intensity: Moderate for Muscle Gain and Fast for Fat Loss;
  • Rest: As Little Rest As Possible for weight watchers, and 1-2 minutes rest for Muscle Gainers

Monday

  1. DB Squat to Calf Raise – 3 sets of 12, 10, and 8 repetitions
  2. One-arm Dumbbell Rowing – 3 sets of 10, 8, and 6 repetitions
  3. Dumbbell IYT Raises -3 sets of 8, 6, and 4 repetitions
  4. DB Drag Curl – 3 sets of 10, 8, and 6 repetitions
  5. Incline Dumbbell Bench Press – 3 sets of 12, 10, and 8 repetitions
  6. DB Squeeze Press – 3 sets of 8, 6, and 4 repetitions

Tuesday

  1. Dumbbell Deadlift to Upright Row – 3 sets of 8, 6, and 4 repetitions
  2. Dumbbell Pushup to Row – 3 sets of 8, 6, and 4 repetitions
  3. DB Pullover – 3 sets of 10, 8, and 6 repetitions
  4. Dumbbell Arnold Press – 3 sets of 12, 10, and 8 repetitions
  5. DB Bulgarian Split Squat – 3 sets of 12, 10, and 8 repetitions
  6. Dumbbell Hip Thrust – 3 sets of 12, 10, and 8 repetitions

Thursday

  1. Dumbbell Floor Press – 3 sets of 10, 8, and 6 repetitions
  2. Incline DB Overhead Extension – 3 sets of 10, 8, and 6 repetitions
  3. Dumbbell Lunges to Hammer Curl – 3 sets of 10, 8, and 6 repetitions
  4. DB Squat to Overhead Press – 3 sets of 10, 8, and 6 repetitions
  5. DB Inverted Row – 3 sets of 10, 8, and 6 repetitions
  6. Dumbbell Good Morning – 3 sets of 10, 8, and 6 repetitions

Friday

  1. Standing Dumbbell Y Raises – 3 sets of 8, 6, and 4 repetitions
  2. DB Bent-Over Reverse Fly – 3 sets of 10, 8, and 6 repetitions
  3. Single Arm DB Landmine Press – 3 sets of 8, 6, and 4 repetitions
  4. DB Crossover Curl to Extension – 3 sets of 10, 8, and 6 repetitions
  5. Dumbbell Side Plan – 20 seconds each side
  6. Dumbbell Rusian Twist – 20 seconds each side

This is just a sample of a compound dumbbell workout routine. You can create your own routine with the help of a compound dumbbell exercise list. This is all I have. So, work out hard but safely.

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