Upper Body Workout

Upper Body Workout

This workout is intended to give you the ability to exercise regardless of your location, access to a gym, and use of equipment. These exercises can be completed anywhere, you'll just need some space, some dumbbells or resistance bands. You can lay on the floor for exercises showing use of the weight bench if you do not have a weight bench. 

This workout can also be utilized by those going to the gym but not quite sure what exercises to put together in a workout. Follow these exercises to get a well rounded training plan for a upper body effect. 

This workout can be completed in a variety of ways; set & reps, circuits, or super sets. Keep the Pro Tips in mind to maintain correct form and prevent injury.    

Exercise 1

Major Muscle Groups: pectoralis major, triceps, anterior deltoid 

Pro Tip: Raise your chest and tighten your upper back before starting any repetitions. This puts your shoulder joint in a stable position to handle the loaded movement. 

Controlled movement is always more important than the amount of weight. 

Bench Press with Dumbells

Bench Press with Resistance Bands

 

Exercise 2

Major Muscle Groups: Deltoids (anterior, medial, & posterior)

Pro Tip: Engage your core throughout this movement. This will add stabilization through the trunk and hips.  

Raise your chest, and slightly draw your shoulder back before starting the movement, this helps protect your shoulder joint. You don't want to perform this movement with your shoulders rounded forward.  

Military Press with Dumbells

Military Press with Resistance Bands

 

Exercise 3

Major Muscle Groups: anterior deltoid, biceps brachii, serratus anterior

Pro Tip: Place feet shoulder width apart with body weight on the balls of your feet, do not allow your body weight to switch to the heels of your feet. 

Try not to swing the body in effort to move the weight, if you find yourself doing this, use less weight and control the movement. 

Front Shoulder Raises with Dumbells

Front Shoulder Raises with Resistance Bands

 

Exercise 4

Major Muscle Groups: Anterior deltoid, supraspinatus, trapezius

Pro Tip: Place feet shoulder width apart with body weight on the balls of your feet, do not allow your body weight to switch to the heels of your feet. 

Try not to swing the body in effort to move the weight, if you find yourself doing this, use less weight and control the movement. 

 

Lateral Shoulder Raises with Dumbells

Lateral Shoulder Raises with Resistance Bands

 

  

Exercise 5

Major Muscle Groups: Back (latissimus dorsi, rhomboids) 

Pro Tip: Stabilize yourself by setting feet shoulder width apart, bend at the hips, and push your chest forward. This creates a "flat back" needed to perform this exercise with correct form. 

Squeeze your shoulder blades together at the top of the movement, this ensures the full range of movement has been completed.  

Bent Over Rows with Dumbells

Bent Over Rows with Resistance Bands

 

Exercise 6

Major Muscle Groups: latissimus dorsi, (secondary muscles include teres major and teres minor, muscles in the rotator cuff) 

Pro Tip: Keep the elbow tucked in toward the side and pull weight behind you, squeeze at the top to make sure to complete the full range of movement.

Try not to throw the shoulder back in effort to move the weight, if you find yourself doing this, use less weight and control the movement. 

 

Single Arm Row with Dumbells

Single Arm Row with Resistance Bands

 

Exercise 7

Major Muscle Groups: biceps brachii

Pro Tip: Keep elbows tucked into sides, try not to let them come away from your sides throughout the movement.

Don't swing the body in effort to move the weight, if you find yourself doing this, use less weight and control the movement. 

You can also stand with your back to a wall, this limits the body's ability to swing in effort to lift the weight. 

 

Bicep Curls with Dumbells

Bicep Curls with Resistance Bands

 

Exercise 8

Major Muscle Groups: brachialis, brachioradialis

Pro Tip: Keep elbows tucked into sides, try not to let them come away from your sides throughout the movement.

Try not to swing the body in effort to move the weight, if you find yourself doing this, use less weight and control the movement. 

You can also stand with your back to a wall while performing the exercise, this limits the body's ability to swing in effort to lift the weight. 

Hammer Curl with Dumbells

Hammer Curl with Resistance Bands

 

Exercise 9

Major Muscle Groups: Triceps brachii

Pro Tip: Keep elbows tucked into sides, try not to let them come away from your sides throughout the movement.

Try to lock elbows straight and squeeze those muscles to make sure you've completed the full range of movement. 

You can also perform this exercise one arm at a time, while stabilizing your body against a bench, wall or chair. 

Tricep Kickbacks with Dumbells

Tricep Kickbacks with Resistance Bands

 

Exercise 10

Major Muscle Groups: Triceps brachii

Pro Tip: Keep elbows from swinging out to the side throughout the movement. The elbows should remain parallel to the body throughout the full range of movement.  

Try not to use your shoulders to initiate the movement of the arms straightening, if you find yourself doing this, use less weight and control the movement. 

Tricep Extensions with Dumbells

Tricep Extensions with Resistance Bands