This 20-Minute Workout Combines Dumbbells and a Resistance Band for a Full-Body Burn

Adding resistance bands to dumbbells naturally increases their load.
Image Credit: novoselov/iStock/GettyImages

You've been crushing your home workouts in quarantine, but now those 10-pound dumbbells you've been slinging around aren't feeling like the big boulders they did a few months ago. That's a sign it's time to level up your workouts with heavier weights, aka progressive overload.

But if your space or budget doesn't allow for a new set, wrapping a long resistance band to your weights will help you keep those muscle-building gains going strong. Adding a resistance band to your dumbbells naturally increases their load, making them more challenging to lift. And you can adjust the load by simply changing the way you hold the band or using one that has a lighter resistance.

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Adding load isn't the only thing resistance bands can do; they also encourage better form and control over the weights, helping you get more out of the eccentric (downward) phase of exercises. Without resistance bands, gravity assists your downward movement.

This 20-minute, full-body dumbbell workout requires a pair of dumbbells and one light-to-medium resistance band. Complete 10 reps of each exercise for 4 four rounds.

Check out more of our 20-minute workouts here — we've got something for everyone.

Move 1: Banded Dumbbell Romanian Deadlift

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Sets 4
Reps 10
Body Part Legs
  1. Using a long resistance band, loop each dumbbell through each end of the band so that the band is around the handles of the weights.
  2. Stand on top of the resistance band with your feet hip-distance apart, and hold a dumbbell in each hand in front of your thighs.
  3. With a slight bend in the knees and a flat back, hinge your hips back, tracing the weights down your legs until you feel the tension in your hamstrings. Keep your shoulders back and down to engage your lats and brace your core.
  4. Driving your feet into the ground, lift the weights back up to stand, squeezing your glutes at the top.

Tip

When hinging your hips back in a deadlift, make sure to let your eyes follow your movement to keep your spine long. If you keep your eyes forward, you will put all of the tension in your lower back.

Move 2: Banded Dumbbell Front Raise

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Sets 4
Reps 10
Body Part Shoulders
  1. Stand at the center of the resistance band with your feet hip-distance apart. Hold one end of the band and a dumbbell in each hand in front of your thighs.
  2. Keeping your upper and lower body still, raise your arms straight up in front of you until they're at shoulder height and parallel with the ground.
  3. Slowly lower the dumbbells back to the starting position.

Move 3: Banded Dumbbell Chest Press

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Sets 4
Reps 10
Body Part Chest
  1. Loop each dumbbell through each end of the band so that the band is around the handles of the weights.
  2. Lie face-up on the ground with your back at the center of the resistance band. Keep your knees bent and feet flat on the ground.
  3. Hold a dumbbell in each hand by your chest, arms bent to 90 degrees. Press your shoulders down on the ground.
  4. On an exhale, press the weights above your chest.
  5. Slowly lower the dumbbells back down to the starting position.

Move 4: Banded Dumbbell Crunch

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Sets 4
Reps 10
Body Part Abs
  1. Lie face-up with your back at the center of the resistance band. Keep your knees bent and feet flat on the ground.
  2. Hold one end of the resistance band in each hand and one dumbbell right above your chest. Straighten your arms to feel the tension in the band.
  3. Lift your head, neck and shoulders off of the ground by squeezing your core.
  4. Lie back down with control to return to the starting position.

Move 5: Banded Seated Dumbbell Row

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Sets 4
Reps 10
Body Part Back
  1. Loop each dumbbell through each end of the band so that the band is around the handles of the weights.
  2. Sit on the ground with your legs straight out in front of you and your back upright.
  3. Place the center of the band at the bottom of your feet and hold a dumbbell in each hand in front of you.
  4. Pull the dumbbells towards your hips, squeezing your shoulder blades together.
  5. Extend your arms back out to return to the starting position.

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