Bench Press With Dumbbells – How To & Starter Kit (2024)

The dumbbell bench press is a close relative to the popular barbell bench press.

When you’re at the gym, you might find it easier to manage and control two slightly lighter dumbbells, making this exercise accessible to people of various skill levels.

This movement is valuable for building strength and muscle in your entire upper body, potentially enhancing your barbell bench press, and even contributing to chest muscle growth.

bench press with dumbbells
bench press with dumbbells

How To Bench Press With Dumbbells

Here’s a detailed guide on how to perform the dumbbell bench press correctly:

  1. Preparation: Pick up the dumbbells from the floor to your knees.
  2. Initial Positioning: Hold the dumbbells with a firm grip, squeeze your shoulder blades together, and lift your knees one by one to bring the dumbbells to your shoulders. As you lift the last dumbbell, lie back on the bench. Your arms should be fully extended with the dumbbells over your chest.
  3. Execution: Keep your shoulder blades squeezed and your feet pressing into the floor. Gradually lower the dumbbells towards your chest, allowing them to move slightly outward. Lower them until your upper arms are parallel to the floor or your elbows reach chest height, while keeping your elbows under your wrists.
  4. Pressing: Push the dumbbells up and inward as you exhale, bringing your hands back to the starting position above your shoulders.
how to bench press with dumbbells
how to bench press with dumbbells

Bench Press With Dumbbells Workout

For effective programming, consider the following set-and-rep options:

  • For Muscle Growth: 3 to 5 sets of 7 to 12 reps, leaving 1-2 reps in reserve.
  • For Strength Gains: 4 to 6 sets of 5 to 8 heavy reps with a rest of at least two minutes between sets.
  • For Beginners: 3 sets of 10 reps with a light to moderate weight.

Common Mistakes – Bench Press With Dumbbells

Common mistakes to avoid include starting with too much weight, using alternating arms, and not lowering the dumbbells deep enough.

bench press with dumbbells movement
bench press with dumbbells movement
bench press with dumbbells do's and dont's
bench press with dumbbells do’s and dont’s

Bench Press With Dumbbells Variations

There are also variations of the dumbbell bench press, such as the dumbbell floor press, alternating dumbbell bench press, and single-arm dumbbell bench press. These can add diversity to your training routine.

Benefits of Bench Press With Dumbbells

Benefits of the dumbbell bench press include increased muscle and strength, greater freedom of movement compared to barbells, improved unilateral strength, and an extended range of motion. This exercise is beneficial for powerlifters, strongmen/women, weightlifters, and bodybuilders, each group reaping specific advantages.

Dumbbells Workout For Chest home
Dumbbells Workout For Chest home

Bench Press With Dumbbells Starter Kit

At GymNirvana, we’ve had a chat with loads of folks who have their own home gyms all around the globe.

And guess what?

The two things you’ll find in pretty much every one of these home gyms are dumbbells and a bench. These two are like the champs, super common and super simple to kick off with. And hey, dumbbells open up a crazy load of workout options too!

If you’re gearing up to begin your home gym adventure with a bench and some dumbbells, these are the ones we highly recommend:

how to bench press with dumbbells home
how to bench press with dumbbells home

Bench Press With Dumbbells FAQs

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