Today I’m sharing an upper body strength workout that can be done at home if you have a couple sets of dumbbells.

Before I get into the upper body workout, I want to tell you about the barre workout I did yesterday.

I did this Barre 3 workout on YouTube. By the time I was done the 45 minute video my legs were shaking! It didn’t take long for my legs to start shaking – it was a really great workout. I used this mini stability ball (affiliate link) for the workout.

I really like that there were modifications to make it both easier and harder. I used one of the modifications when they were on their hands and knees because of my bad wrists – I can’t bend my wrist and put weight on it, so I laid on the floor instead and did the exercise from there instead.

And now onto today’s upper body strength workout!

This is a pretty basic upper body strength workout. It can even be done at home if you have a couple sets of dumbbells. I like these ones (affiliate link) from Amazon. Perform 12 reps x 3 sets for each exercise. In between each set rest for 1 set. Below the graphic I’ve listed a description of each exercise just in case you need a refresher.

Dumbbell chest press

With a dumbbell in each hand, lay down on a bench or the floor. Your upper arm should be at a 90 degree angle to your torso and your hands directly over your elbows. Move the dumbbells up while they come above your chest. With control move them back down to the starting position. 

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. 

Tricep kickbacks

With a dumbbell in each hand, flex at the ankles, knees, and hips so that your torso is leaning forward slightly. Bring your arms close to your body with your elbows back slightly. Start with your forearm in a 90 degree angle to your upper arm and slowly extend your forearm until your entire arm is straight and your triceps muscles are contracted. Slowly reverse the movement so that your arm is once again at a 90 degree angle.


Starting on your toes and hands, make sure your body is a straight line from your heels to your knees, 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. An easier modification is instead of being on your toes, lower to your knees.

Bent over rows

With a dumbbell in each hand (palms facing each other) bend forward slightly at the hips so that your torso is at a 45 degree angle to the floor, letting your arms hang straight down and keeping your back in a neutral position. Bring both dumbbells up towards your armpits while contracting your shoulder blades towards each other (kind of like pinching your shoulder blades together). Move dumbbells back towards starting position. 

Chest flyes

With a dumbbell in each hand, lie on a bench or the floor with your elbows slightly bent. Move the dumbbells in a semi circular motion above you until they meet directly above your chest. Return to the starting position by moving the dumbbells with control so that your arms are extended again. 

Lateral raise

As always, talk to your doctor before starting to workout. Honor your body and modify this workout as needed for your body. This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting my blog, I appreciate it!

Do you have a favorite barre workout on YouTube? Share it in the comments below – I would love to do it!

Upper Body Strength Workout