Today I’m sharing a beginner upper body workout – perfect for those people who have decided to work on their fitness in 2018.

This workout is pretty straight forward in terms of design, and can be done with some dumbbells and a bench and a medicine ball, all three of which can be found at any gym. Perform 8 reps of the first exercise, rest for 60 seconds, and then repeat three more times for a total of 4 sets. Once that has been completed, move onto the next exercise. Be sure to do a 5 to 10 minute warm up at the beginning of the workout and a 5 to 10 cool down at the end as well. Correct form should always be your number 1 priority, so if you have to decrease the weight of a dumbbell, do it.

As always, if you’re looking for something specific when it comes to workouts, you can find more of my workouts on my workouts page.

Beginner Upper Body Workout

Overhead press

Stand with your feet hip width apart with a dumbbell in each hand. With your upper arms in a 90 degree angle to your torso and your hands directly above your elbows, lift your hands straight up so that your arms are straight above your head. Slowly lower your hands back down to the starting position.

Knee pushup

Starting on your knees and hands, make sure your body is a straight line from your knees to hips, shoulders, and neck. Your hands should be a bit wider than your shoulders. Slowly bend at the elbows, lowering yourself to the ground. Try to get at low as possible, and then push yourself back up, all the while maintaining that straight line.

One arm dumbbell bench row

Put your hand and knee on the same side on a bench, which your hand directly under your shoulder and your knee directly under your hip. With your other foot on the floor and a dumbbell in the other hand, raise the dumbbell up to the side of your torso using your back and shoulder muscles, while keeping your shoulder and torso stationary. Return the dumbbell to the starting position and repeat.

Med ball slam

With your feet shoulder width apart and a medicine ball in your hands, lift it over your head and slam it into the ground just in front of your feet. Pick it up quickly and repeat.

Front shoulder raise

With a dumbbell in each hand, stand straight with your feet shoulder width apart. Slowly lift your hands in front of you so that they’re at shoulder height, with a micro bend in your elbows. Slowly lower your hands back to your sides.

Bicep curl

Start with the feet hip width apart, and back in a neutral position. With a dumbbell in each hand, keep your elbows in close to your side and raise the dumbbell upwards. Movement should be at the elbow, not the wrist. Lower the dumbbell with a controlled movement, not allowing gravity to take over.

Upright row

Stand with your feet hip width apart, a dumbbell in each hand just in front of your thigh, palm facing your thigh. With a neutral spine slide your hands up your body until your hands are almost at your armpit. Slowly lower your hands back down to the starting position.

Tricep extension

Laying on your back on a bench with a dumbbell in each hand, move your arms so that they are straight up above your shoulders. Bending at the elbow, bring the dumbbells towards each side of your head and then return to the starting position.

Side shoulder raise

With your arms down at your sides with a dumbbell in each hand, slowly raise your hands away from your body to the side, keeping your arm straight at the elbow. Once your hands reach shoulder level, slowly lower them back down to your sides.

As always, you should check with your doctor before beginning to workout. Honor your body and modify this workout for you. 

What’s your favorite upper body exercise?

Beginner Upper Body Workout