This 6 day dumbbell only workout program only requires dumbbells and is perfect for those looking to build lean muscle mass at home or on the go!
Workout Summary

Workout Description

We cap off our dumbbell only workout series with a 6 day workout split that utilizes nothing but dumbbells.

This workout is perfect for anyone who works out at home in their home gym, travels frequently and needs a go-to program they can do in limited hotel gyms, or anyone out there who prefers training with dumbbells over other implements.

This is the final program in this particular series. Each program was written as a progression from the previous program. The main form of progression being increasing the total volume of your workouts by increasing the number of training days each week.

Prior to performing this program, it is recommended to go through the following phases:

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6 Day Dumbbell Workout Split Overview

This workout can be performed for up to 12 weeks.

It follows a push/pull/legs workout scheme. As a result, you’ll train each muscle group at least twice per week. Some supporting muscle groups (especially the back and shoulders) are indirectly targeted even more than that.

The program is void of any ab work and cardio work. However, both can be easily added at a frequency that aligns with your goals.

The main goal of the program is to help you build lean muscle mass. It can also be used for those with fat loss goals as well. Both goals will heavily rely on whether or not you’re currently eating in a calorie surplus or deficit at the time of performing the workouts.

Keep rest periods between 45-60 seconds when performing each workout.

When selecting a weight, choose a weight that is challenging for each exercise. You should feel as though you have just 1 more rep left in the tank upon completing each set.

After you’ve finished this workout program’s recommended duration, you’re more than welcome to continue on with it if you are enjoying it and still seeing results from it. Alternatively, you can cycle through the other workouts in the series, attempting to get stronger at the lifts each time you perform them.

Day 1: Push Dumbbell Workout A

Exercise Sets Reps
Dumbbell Bench Press 5 8-12
Decline Dumbbell Bench Press 3 8-12
Dumbbell Floor Press 3 8-12
Seated Dumbbell Press 4 8-12
Dumbbell Lateral Raise 3 8-12
Dumbbell Tricep Overhead Extension 3 8-12

Day 2: Pull Dumbbell Workout A

Exercise Sets Reps
Dumbbell Bent Over Row 4 8-12
Chest Supported Dumbbell Row 4 8-12
Dumbbell Pull Over 3 10-15
Rear Delt Fly 3 10-15
Dumbbell Bicep Curl 3 12-15
Zottman Curl 3 12-15

Day 3: Leg Dumbbell Workout A

Exercise Sets Reps
Dumbbell Squat 4 8-12
Dumbbell Stiff Leg Deadlift 4 8-12
Dumbbell Goblet Squat 4 8-12
Dumbbell Hip Thrust 4 8-12
Dumbbell Calf Raise 4 15-20

Day 4: Push Dumbbell Workout B

Exercise Sets Reps
Dumbbell Incline Bench Press 5 8-12
Dumbbell Chest Fly 3 8-12
Standing Dumbbell Press 4 8-12
Arnold Press 3 8-12
Lateral Raise 3 8-12
Dumbbell Skullcrusher 3 8-12

Day 5: Pull Dumbbell Workout B

Exercise Sets Reps
One Arm Dumbbell Row 5 8-12
Reverse Grip Dumbbell Row 4 8-12
Dumbbell Pullover 4 8-12
Dumbbell Hammer Curl 3 10-15
Reverse Curl 3 10-15

Day 6: Leg Dumbbell Workout B

Exercise Sets Reps
Dumbbell Deadlift 4 8-12
Dumbbell Split Squat 4 8-12 Each
Dumbbell Goblet Squat 3 8-12
Dumbbell Hip Thrust 3 10-15
Dumbbell Calf Raise 4 20

If you have any questions about this 6 day dumbbell only workout program, please feel free to ask away in the comments section below!

346 Comments
Amr Alnajar
Posted on: Wed, 08/18/2021 - 16:54

Hi couch!
Can I replace Dumbbell Stiff Leg Deadlift with Hamstring Curl , as dead leift really hurts my lower back.

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Roger
Posted on: Tue, 09/07/2021 - 09:33

Hi, Amr. You can perform hamstring curls if you like. More importantly, if any form of deadlift hurts your lower back, you should consider seeing a physician. Best of luck.

Sarah
Posted on: Tue, 08/17/2021 - 10:40

Just finished this program with good results. I’d like to repeat it, but lift only 5 days a week. Could I drop either a push day or a pull day on alternating weeks (so one week has 2 push 1 pull, next week 2 pull 1 push)? I saw the 5 day program but don’t really want to do a full body day. Thanks!

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Roger
Posted on: Thu, 09/02/2021 - 18:12

Hi, Sarah. Glad you saw good results. You can certainly make adjustments like the one you mentioned. Just keep tabs on how you progress. Let us know how it goes for you. Thanks for checking out M&S.

Sasha
Posted on: Thu, 08/12/2021 - 05:00

I'm now at the end of my second week, it's been really great so far. The only thing is I have lower back pain and I'm finding some workouts that involve bending over particularly "Reverse Grip Dumbbell Row" and to a lesser extent "Dumbbell Stiff Leg Deadlift" - to be quite painful.
Can you suggest any alternative but similar workouts?

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Marina
Posted on: Fri, 08/13/2021 - 09:57

Sasha -

Do you have a workout band handy? It might be worth using bands to nail down the proper exercise execution before advancing to dumbbells. Proper form is key here. Let us know.

Josh
Posted on: Mon, 07/19/2021 - 06:45

Thanks for this program! I have finished it twice now and have been curious as to what a next step could be for maintaining a dumbbell only exercise routine at home? Hoping to change things up a bit but still maintain a similar structure. Any resources would be super helpful, thank you!

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Abigail
Posted on: Mon, 07/19/2021 - 09:53

Hey Josh - glad you're liking it! Check out this article on how to modify your current gym routine to make it more challenging: https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/7-ways-make-your-home-gym-wor...

Christian
Posted on: Wed, 07/14/2021 - 15:29

Hello all, I have 2 weeks left of this 12 week program. Any suggestions what program I can do next? I have dumbbells and a adjustable bench so this program was great. I also have some bands and adjustable barbell and easy bar. I do not have a rack for squats etc. My goal is to lose some more body fat at the same time get stronger and build muscle.

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Abigail
Posted on: Fri, 07/16/2021 - 08:59

Hey Christain - glad you're liking the program. You can repeat this program after you finish the first round of 12 weeks.

Brody
Posted on: Wed, 07/14/2021 - 09:10

How can I add abs to my workout and what exercises?

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Abigail
Posted on: Wed, 07/14/2021 - 09:13

Hey Brody - yes you can, check out this program: https://www.muscleandstrength.com/workouts/core-destroyer-8-week-home-ab...

Kostas
Posted on: Tue, 06/29/2021 - 12:42

Hey, how many times a week can I do cardio while following this program? When would it be best to be done?

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Abigail
Posted on: Wed, 06/30/2021 - 10:01

Hey Kostas - cardio can be done multiple times per week. There's no set amount of cardio to do but it is best to do your cardio after your weight training or in a separate session (ie. morning cardio and evening weights).

Pratyaush
Posted on: Sat, 06/26/2021 - 12:26

What should be the weight of the dumbbell for the 6 day split workout?

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Abigail
Posted on: Mon, 06/28/2021 - 09:26

Hey Pratyaush - the weight will vary based on the individual. You should use a weight that you can move safely and with proper form for the given number of reps.

Pranay
Posted on: Sat, 06/26/2021 - 10:38

Does it show result fast

Vikram Santhanam
Posted on: Tue, 06/22/2021 - 10:40

Hi ... Can I replace some excercise with barbell variations ? How to add cardio to this workout ?

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Abigail
Posted on: Wed, 06/23/2021 - 09:20

Hey Vikram - yes you can use barbell variations for some of the exercises. If you're wanting to add cardio, you can add 2-3 days per week after your workouts.

Josh
Posted on: Mon, 06/14/2021 - 07:15

Where is the best place in this workout to insert pull ups?
Thanks

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Abigail
Posted on: Mon, 06/14/2021 - 10:37

Hey Josh - you can add them at the beginning of your pull days.

tom
Posted on: Sat, 06/05/2021 - 16:19

hi,
i am nearing the end of this program, what would you recommend as the next level in the progression?

i have done the 3,4,5 day split as well and overall i did gain size and strength and would like to progress.

any help is appreciated.

thank you.

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Abigail
Posted on: Mon, 06/07/2021 - 10:15

Hey tom - check out this guide to choosing your next workout program: https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/5-frequently-asked-questions-...

Luke
Posted on: Mon, 05/31/2021 - 15:33

Hey, I’ve seen some great recommendations for warmups and ab work to accompany this plan, but are there any guides for HIIT & MISS cardio to pair with it that you’d recommend?

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Abigail
Posted on: Fri, 06/04/2021 - 10:23
Luke
Posted on: Sun, 06/06/2021 - 08:41

Thanks!

Woody
Posted on: Sun, 05/30/2021 - 21:37

Hi, when would you recommend putting rest days in for this program? Thanks!

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Abigail
Posted on: Fri, 06/04/2021 - 10:24

Hey Woody - you'll have a rest day after day 6.

karan
Posted on: Thu, 05/27/2021 - 02:17

HI need your suggestion if i don't have bench how can i perform incline and decline chest press

Allan
Posted on: Thu, 06/03/2021 - 23:49

As an incline bench press alternative, do incline closed grip push up for additional weight, carry a shoulder bag while doing push ups and add little weights in it. For flat bench press alternative, use normal closed grip push up

Mike
Posted on: Mon, 05/24/2021 - 09:33

I workout in the mornings and have three young kids to wake up and get ready. Time is always an issue. Can I superset these? 2 exercises then rest?

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Abigail
Posted on: Mon, 05/24/2021 - 09:53

Hey Mike - while that is not ideal, yes, you can superset the exercises.

tom
Posted on: Sun, 05/23/2021 - 01:18

hello,
i am 6 weeks into this; i did the 4 & 5 day split before. i dont feel like my upper chest is getting any attention. should i add an incline bench or other lift to replace or supplement the program?

tom
Posted on: Sat, 06/05/2021 - 16:17

any suggestions appreciated :)

La Ruby
Posted on: Sat, 05/22/2021 - 12:08

Are there any warmup or core exercises to complement this program?

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Abigail
Posted on: Mon, 05/24/2021 - 09:57

Hey La Ruby - there isn't a specific warm up or ab routine for this program. Check out this guide on warming up (https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/warming-up-for-dummies) and this ab routine (https://www.muscleandstrength.com/workouts/core-destroyer-8-week-home-ab...).

Arash
Posted on: Wed, 05/19/2021 - 09:53

Can I rest in between each ppl like pplr pplr then repeat?

jj
Posted on: Sun, 05/16/2021 - 22:10

how long should rest breaks be between each exercise?

I believe it is 45-60 seconds between each set. But what about each exercise.

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Abigail
Posted on: Mon, 05/17/2021 - 11:06

Hey jj - rest between exercises can be 45-60 seconds or however long it takes you to set up for the next exercise.

jj
Posted on: Mon, 05/17/2021 - 20:11

I have been doing 2 - 3 minutes between each exercise. Does this affect progress (building muscle)?

So you're saying 45 - 60 sec between each exercise?

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Abigail
Posted on: Tue, 05/18/2021 - 10:17

Check out this article for more info on rest periods and muscle growth: https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/ideal-repetition-speed-and-re...

jj
Posted on: Sun, 05/16/2021 - 20:12

What can I do for Decline Dumbbell Bench Press? I do not have a bench.

I am planning to begin this this plan today for 12 weeks

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Abigail
Posted on: Mon, 05/17/2021 - 11:08

Hey JJ - you can do pushups as an alternative

George
Posted on: Sat, 05/15/2021 - 15:08

What could I do instead of decline Db bench press as my bench only inclines?

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Abigail
Posted on: Mon, 05/17/2021 - 11:08

Hey George - you can do pushups as an alterantive.

Arash
Posted on: Wed, 05/19/2021 - 09:53

You could also try doing it on the floor

Sarah
Posted on: Mon, 05/10/2021 - 18:56

I have a bench, but it’s not adjustable. What can I sub for the decline dumbell bench press on Push A? It’s already got dumbell bench press and floor press.. should I add another set of one of these? Something else? Thanks!

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Abigail
Posted on: Tue, 05/11/2021 - 09:34

Hey Sarah - you can do dumbbell pullovers as a replacement

Romit
Posted on: Fri, 04/23/2021 - 02:19

Can I get alternatives for exercises that require bench. As I don’t have one, or should I perform the same on floor. Thanks

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Abigail
Posted on: Fri, 04/23/2021 - 10:36

Hey Romit - you can perform the bench exercises on the floor.

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