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Dumbells for compound lifts

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  • Dumbells for compound lifts

    I train at home & have currently been working off basic BW training pushups, squats & pull ups. I would like to add compound lifts in once or twice a week to help strength gains but would like to keep equipment minimal.

    Was thinking of getting a pair or interchangeable plate dumbells (not sure how much to start) but wanted some oppinions training was working off basic 5x5 philosophy front squat, OH press, deadlift & bench press (I have a railway sleeper retaining wall to use as a bench) I'm looking at functional strength rather than big numbers & thinking DB maybe safer when training on my own (got stuck under a bar before) oppinions please

    Thanks



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  • #2
    Dumbbells might get you a certain distance with Bench and Press. But your essentially going to get nowhere in the Squat and Dead lift. Unless you have dumbbells that go up to 100 kilos each. IMO, a dumbell deadlift is also unsafe and just unnecessary.

    In my routine, the only thing I use dumbbells for are 1 arm bent over row. My GF uses them sometimes for goblet squats.

    If you CANNOT get to a gym. Start doing some harder body weight variations. Things like convict conditioning. Check out Al Kavadlo – We're Working Out! | We're Working Out! for ideas. Otherwise, you could do some light Rowing, squatting, pressing and benching. But it wont get you far.

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    • #3
      You could try a sand bag or keg, both will give enough weight to progress compound lifts until you decide if you want to either get a bar or join a gym.
      "Times fun when you are having Flies" Kermit the frog

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      • #4
        I struggle to hold on to a 45lb dumbbell and squat it. My arms get tired way before the rest of me. With a barbell I can squat more than 120lbs.
        Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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        • #5
          Dumbbells are a great thing to use for compound lifts when a bar is not an option. The best exercises using dumbbells work strength as well as stability. Exercises like goblet squats, pistol squats, rear foot elevated squats, lunges, and overhead squats are great for squatting. RDL and one legged RDLs are better than regular deadlifts with dumbbells. For upperbody, any pushes and pulls work just fine with dumbbells (chest press, shoulder press, squat to overhead, rows, etc...)

          Definitely a great investment for your health and fitness!
          http://nickburgraff.com/

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          • #6
            Using dumbells with a Turkish Get up is a great exercise. Do 1 rep each side. Reduce the weight by 1 plate each end and do 1 rep each side. Do this 3 times a week.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Vick View Post
              Using dumbells with a Turkish Get up is a great exercise. Do 1 rep each side. Reduce the weight by 1 plate each end and do 1 rep each side. Do this 3 times a week.
              Something I'm thinking of adding to my repertoire vick. I'm still doing my HIT basics though. 1x every 5 days or so.

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              • #8
                I use them with the dead lift, (I work my way up to 10 reps on the first set, then increase the weight. The second set is less weight and I go a max of 10 reps) and then 3 sets of two reps (working my way up to 3 reps) of torture twists three times a week.
                It is variation of Barry Ross's program for Olympic athletes. I've been doing them for about a month now. I like my progress so far.
                Last edited by Vick; 07-01-2013, 07:08 PM.

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                • #9
                  Thrusters are also another "lift" that can be done with dumbbells. Effective, using the squat motion, and high intensity.
                  ~All luck is earned in the end.~

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                  • #10
                    At the same time if you get a barbell set with grip weights you can use them for a lot of the same things you use dumbbells for. I paid less than $200 for a 225# olympic set with grip weights and that's pretty much all I need. that along with a padded mat to protect your floor and maybe a simple squat rack/bench and you've got everything. When you compare the price of all that to most gym memberships you're coming out on top. That and you won't have to wait for a squat rack or work around gym hours. or drive, for that matter.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by ChaserBD04 View Post
                      Thrusters are also another "lift" that can be done with dumbbells. Effective, using the squat motion, and high intensity.
                      What's high intensity about thrusters? You can front squat way more than you can push press, right? So the front squat is actually artificially limited in intensity...
                      The Champagne of Beards

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                      • #12
                        I personally went the route of picking up some good kettlebells. They feel better when doing dead lifts and squats than the dumbells do because of their shape and how easy it is to rack them. Not to mention if you got yourself a couple different weights you could use them for swings, presses, get ups, windmills, and as parallette handles as well! Mike Mahler has a ton of great info on kettlebell training and also strength training in general. I would check out his website! Store | Mahler's Aggressive Strength
                        Fitness Is A Journey, Not A Destination.

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