Why Must You Do These 8 Dumbbell Push Up Exercises?

Most of us would love to have a good-looking, strong body. I mean, who doesn’t want to be fit right? You may be a student or a working professional, or a young parent. All of us need to lift heavy things from time to time. Be the groceries, moving furniture, or kids, everyone benefits from strong arms.

So what are some dumbbell pushups you can do to strengthen your arms? Those with prior gym experience can do Dumbbell T Pushups. They activate the core and improve performance while lifting. Beginners can try Dumbbell deficit pushups. Those with enough experience and upper body strength can go for Dumbbell push-up rows with burpees. So depending on your expertise level, we have presented different exercises for you!

Doing Dumbbell pushups also have many benefits like improved stability and greater upper body strength. So it’s good to do a few exercises every day, even for beginners. Don’t shy away from having the body you love!

Different Pushup Exercises with Dumbbells

Dumbbell T Pushups

This exercise trains your arms as well as the whole body. The whole body works together while improving performance during lifts. If you are an experienced gym buff, then this intermediate-level exercise is for you.


  • At a shoulder’s width apart, keep both dumbbells on the floor.
  • Keeping your abs engaged, try and keep your arms straight. Now, take your legs backward and grab both dumbbells to set your body in a pushup position.
  • This is your start position for this exercise. Now, lower your body with your elbows flexed to start exercising. Be neutral without dropping your hips.
  • Make sure your back is straight all this while. Stop while your chest is just above the floor at the bottom. Next, bring your body back to the start position. Simply push with your arms to do this.
  • Raise an arm to the side. Keep your arms straight, all the while making a ‘T’ figure after a second move to the starting position. Now do the same exercise on the other side.

Use lighter dumbbells at the start of your core is not strong enough. It becomes hard to lift heavier dumbbells from the starting position.

Renegade Row

Another great intermediate-level exercise for a good balance and core. Here, the rowing works on your rhomboids and laterals. This exercise needs a lot of core strength as you hold your body in a pushup position for a long time.


  • Hold both dumbbells shoulder-width apart. Now, slowly go down on a pushup position while maintaining the stance with the dumbbells.
  • Retract your shoulders while keeping your chest up. Have your back straight up and your knees stable.
  • Once you have established the above starting position, you can start exercising.
  • Keep your elbow at a 90-degree angle and start by bringing one arm up. It must look like you are rowing. Also, squeeze your lats at the top.
  • Now, come back to the start position again. Repeat the same movements on the other arm too.

Now, there are many complex variations of this exercise too. So master this basic version before you move on to those. You must learn to renegade rows properly.

Pushup to Rows

For the more advanced gym-goers, this exercise is great for making your upper body strong. It targets both the back and chest together. This combo of a row and push-up strengthens your arms, oblique, and abs. The muscles targeted in this are the traps, pecs, latissimus dorsi, and abs.


  • At a shoulder-width length apart, hold both dumbbells and move down into a pushup position.
  • Retract your shoulders while keeping your chest up. Have your back straight up and your knees stable.
  • Once you have established the above starting position, you can start exercising.
  • Keep your back straight and bring your torso down slowly. Stop before the chest almost touches the ground.
  • Now, return to the starting position by pushing with your arms from the bottom position.
  • Keep your elbows close to the body and move the dumbbells by performing a rowing motion.
  • Complete one rep by performing the same movements on the other side.

As for this exercise, for advanced trainers, beginners must try the renegade rows exercise to start with. Once they have mastered that, they can move on to this exercise. It is the foundation exercise needed to perform these smoothly.

Dumbbell Deficit Pushups

Do you want to improve your droopy posture? Then this exercise is the perfect way to improve your posture. They also make your pushups more effective and safer too. It hits the lower and mid traps while making your scapular muscles strong.


  • At shoulder width apart, keep both dumbbells on the floor.
  • Extend your knees and keep both your feet back. Slide down onto the floor and keep your back flat. This is the start position.
  • Now, move your shoulders back and retract them. Start lowering your chest slowly and stop until you can almost touch your chest to the floor.
  • Next, protract your shoulders at the top by pushing with your arms. Slowly bring your body up to the starting position again.

This exercise targets your triceps, chest, abs, and mid and lower traps. This exercise shows you how to retract your shoulders during pushups. Retracting your shoulders during pushes activates all the muscles at the back of your shoulder joint. It puts the scapula in a safe position and stabilizes it. This exercise is great for intermediate and beginner-level people.

Dumbbell Pushup Front Raise

Are you bored with your normal exercise routine? Add a little zing to it by incorporating our next pushup exercise into your workout regime. This targets your chest and shoulders. It is an intermediate-level exercise for the deltoids and abs.


  • Hold the dumbbells, and using them, place your body in the pushup position on the floor.
  • Get into the starting position now. Retract your chest and shoulders to achieve this.
  • Next, keep your core engaged and back straight, and do a pushup.
  • Once the pushup is done, return to the starting position. Do this by raising an arm to the front without moving your body.

Always keep a yoga mat or exercise mat on the floor. This is because you may lose balance during this exercise and hit your face on the floor. So, it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Dumbbell Push up Rows with Burpees

Once you have mastered most of the above beginner and intermediate exercises, it is time for something a little more advanced. These exercises help burn a lot of calories and engages the whole body. It is a mix of a burpee, a row, and a pushup.


  • Start with the normal pushup position of holding both dumbbells at about shoulder width. Make sure your abs are tight and your back is straight.
  • Bring your torso down slowly and keep your back straight. Stop when the chest is almost touching the ground.
  • Return to the start position again by pushing from the bottom position using your arms.
  • Next, keep your elbows at a 90-degree angle and start lifting the dumbbells. Now, repeat the same with the other hand.
  • Then hop forward and stand up for a burpee. Keep your arms straight, hold the dumbbells tight and jump.
  • Now keep the dumbbells back down and jump back into the pushup position. Repeat this for further reps.

It might seem tough at the start. But if you stick to it, with practice, you will get better! Keep this exercise at the end of your heavy workout regime. It gives overall conditioning.

Dumbbell Pushup With Side Toe-Tap

Not just your arms but even your legs deserve a decent workout with dumbbells. You can place the next exercise at the start of your workout regime. It charges up your entire body. In this exercise, we move our legs instead of our arms.


  • Ready yourself in the regular pushup position. Hold both your dumbbells at about shoulder length apart.
  • Keep your dumbbell below your chest and both your feet together. This is the start position for this exercise.
  • Now, slowly lower your body. Keep breathing in as you go lower.
  • Stop when you are almost about to touch the floor.
  • Next, bring your body up by pushing the floor using your arms. Also, stretch your elbows to the top.
  • Bring your toe close to your arm by moving your right leg forward.
  • Now, go back to the starting position and repeat the same movement for the future reps.

The group of muscles we target here are the front delts, hip flexors, abs, and chest. It is an intermediate-level exercise that needs a proper core and initial strength to carry out properly. During the whole exercise, your back must be straight, and your hips stand up.

Many people make the mistake of bringing down their hips instead of their torso. Avoid such mistakes as they make the exercise less effective.

Lopsided Single Dumbbell Pushup

Another great exercise for advanced users, it requires good balance and core strength. It’s a great way to make your chest and arms strong. If any side of your chest is weak, you can do this exercise to build it up. It focuses on each side of the chest separately.


  • Keep a dumbbell on the floor. Now put one hand on the floor and the other on the dumbbell. Let your back be straight.
  • This is the start position. Now, lower the body while breathing in. When the chest is fully stretched, stop and focus on your chest.
  • Come back to the start position again by pushing your hands. You must activate your core throughout the exercise.
  • Now try the same routine by switching sides and placing your hand on the other dumbbell.

Try and focus on your chest muscles during this exercise. This way, the exercise is more effective if you focus on the right body part. Those who are moderately experienced can go for this exercise. It targets the abs, triceps, and chest.

Safety Tips on Performing Pushups on Dumbbells

Doing pushups is a great way to strengthen your overall upper body and core. But how far is too far? What are some tips we can follow to practice injury-free pushups?

Injured Shoulders

You need strong, injury-free shoulders while doing pull-ups. So if you have an injury in your shoulder, always consult a doctor first. Once you get their approval, you can resume your dumbbell pushups routine. Also, if any time you hear a clicking noise or feel any pain in your shoulders during your pushup exercises, call the doctor right away.

Weakness in the Spine

Your spine is one of the sensitive parts of your body. As such, to prevent any spine injury during pushups, you must take care of your form. You can always ask a friend or gym buddy to spot you while you perform your exercises. Always remember to keep your head and neck in a straight line while doing pushups. Your trainer can look out for if they are in the right alignment.

Wrist Pressures

Our wrists support the entire weight of our body during pushups. So you must protect them well during exercises. Using dumbbells instead of your hands to support your body puts pressure on the dumbbell weight rather than your wrist. Now, use the entire dumbbell weight to lift your body. Also, lower your body only to the height of the dumbbells and not to the floor.


Anybody can start with dumbbell pushups at any time in their lives. All they need is good guidance and the right set of exercises. We hope our article was able to point you in the direction of a good start. Start with easy beginner exercises and graduate on to tough ones with burpees and single dumbbell pushups. These will finally help you achieve your goal of building a strong core and tremendous upper body strength.

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