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Old 09-04-2011, 11:01 AM   #1
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Default Dumbbell Fullbody

I get this question a lot so I thought I would toss it out. If you have to design a fullbody workout for a novice using only dumbbells and basic bodyweight movements, how would you structure it.
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Old 09-04-2011, 11:22 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by BendtheBar View Post
I get this question a lot so I thought I would toss it out. If you have to design a fullbody workout for a novice using only dumbbells and basic bodyweight movements, how would you structure it.
What is the goal of this hypothetical novice?
Recent history of exercise or sedatary? (SP)
Wanting to train at home (equipment?) or at gym
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Last edited by Chillen; 09-04-2011 at 11:29 AM.
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Old 09-04-2011, 11:30 AM   #3
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Probably approximately the same way I'd structure one using a barbell with big, compound exercises like squats and presses combined with bodyweight movements, such as press-ups (with variety: plyo, incline, decline, etc.), chins and dips.
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Old 09-04-2011, 11:33 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Chillen View Post
What is the goal of this hypothetical novice?
Recent history of exercise or sedatary? (SP)
Wanting to train at home (equipment?) or at gym
Gain size and strength. Assume he is semi-athletic, plays sports, is 18 and trains at home. He knows some basic lifts, but needs a workout to add both size and strength over the next year.
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Old 09-04-2011, 12:39 PM   #5
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Just thinking here..

Day 1:

Gobet squats
DB Squat Cleans
DB Bench
DB Snatch
Chins

Day 2:
DB Row
DB Clean And Press
Goblet squat
Dips

Day 3:
DB Squat Clean
Goblet Squat
DB Seated Press
DB Upright rows
DB Curls
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Old 09-04-2011, 12:50 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by BendtheBar View Post
Gain size and strength. Assume he is semi-athletic, plays sports, is 18 and trains at home. He knows some basic lifts, but needs a workout to add both size and strength over the next year.
Maybe WS4SB, but replace the barbell lifts with dumbbells. DeFranco has his athlete's do a lot of work with DBs and bodyweight so it might work well.
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Old 09-04-2011, 01:54 PM   #7
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Upper body lifts would be fairly easy to program with just DB clean and presses or even floor presses. With DB Rows and maybe even shrugs for the back (assuming you had enough weight).

Lower body lifts get complicated though because of the lack of resistance, but I really think Split Squats with 2 DBs and one legged deadlifts with 2 DBs may provide enough for the legs. Maybe some explosive swings or snatched for the hip work.

So something like

Day 1:
Split Squats 3-5setsx5-10reps
DB C+P 3-5x5-10

Day 2:
1 Leg DL 3-5x5-10
Floor Press 3-5x5-10

Throw in some DB Rows, Curls, or Tricep Ext. when you feel like it. Reps would probably go higher since you can't really do heavy triples with DBs.

Just a thought. Might not be a perfect program, but it would get the basics covered...
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Old 09-04-2011, 07:12 PM   #8
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One leg deadlift sounds interesting.
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Old 09-04-2011, 08:35 PM   #9
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let me think a little.
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Old 09-04-2011, 08:40 PM   #10
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Each session follows a template of Chest/Back/Shoulders/Legs/Posterior/Biceps/Triceps:

Heavy 3x5
  • DB. Bench
  • DB. Row
  • DB. Seated Press
  • Goblet Squat
  • DB SLDL
  • DB Curls
  • Overhead DB Extension

Light 3x15
  • DB Pullover
  • DB Flyes
  • Side Laterals
  • Sissy Squats
  • DB RDL (high reps)
  • Incline DB Curls
  • Kickbacks

Medium 3x10
  • DB Incline Press
  • DB Kelso Shrugs
  • Standing DB Press
  • DB Step Ups/Lunges
  • DB SLDL
  • DB Curls
  • Lying DB Extensions

Probably stick in some DB Calf Raises and DB Sit Ups a few times a week too.

Last edited by Fazc; 09-04-2011 at 08:43 PM.
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