The lower back is one of the most neglected, yet important muscle groups. As a connector muscle, the lower back is responsible for assisting in compound lifts, and keeping you functioning overall.
Today, we’re going over the lower back dumbbell exercises so you can get big.
You’re here to learn the best lower back dumbbell exercises, so I won’t waste your time any further. Let’s get right into it.
Dumbbell Good morning
The dumbbell good morning is one of the best lower back dumbbell exercises. This exercise is the real deal for strengthening your lower back, glutes, and hamstrings, which are super important muscles for lifting heavy and crushing your workouts.
Here are some reasons why you should add the dumbbell good morning to your exercise arsenal:
- Get a strong lower back: The dumbbell good morning is all about hinging forward from the hips, which means your lower back muscles gotta work hard to keep your spine straight. This exercise can help you build a strong lower back, which is key for avoiding injury and lifting heavy weights.
- Get a booty to be proud of: Your glutes are the biggest muscle group in your body, and the dumbbell good morning targets them like a boss! By strengthening your glutes, you’ll be able to jump higher, run faster, and squat heavier.
- Build some killer hammies: The hamstrings are often neglected in lower body workouts, but not with the dumbbell good morning! This exercise works your hammies like crazy, helping you build strong, defined muscles that look awesome and perform even better.
- Improve your posture and stability: The dumbbell good morning is also great for improving your overall body control and stability. By strengthening your core and lower back, you’ll be able to maintain proper posture and avoid injury during other exercises or daily activities.
Here’s how to do it:
- Start by standing with your feet shoulder-width apart and holding a dumbbell in each hand at your sides.
- Keep your back straight and core engaged as you slowly hinge forward from the hips, lowering your torso towards the ground while keeping your knees slightly bent.
- As you lower your torso, feel a stretch in your hamstrings (the muscles at the back of your thighs).
- Pause for a moment at the bottom of the movement, then engage your glutes (your butt muscles) and hamstrings to raise your torso back up to the starting position.
- Repeat the movement for the desired number of reps.
Dumbbell Back Extensions
The dumbbell back extension is one of the best lower back dumbbell exercises, and one of the most underrated exercises out there. This exercise is crucial for strengthening your lower back muscles, which can help you avoid injury, improve your posture, and look a G.
Here are some reasons why you should add dumbbell back extensions to your workout routine:
- Stronger lower back: The dumbbell back extension targets your lower back muscles like a boss, helping you build strength and resilience in this crucial area. When you have a strong lower back, you’ll be able to lift heavier weights, avoid back pain, and look good in a crop top (if that’s your thing).
- Improved posture: When your lower back muscles are weak, it can lead to poor posture and an unbalanced body. But with dumbbell back extensions, you can strengthen those muscles and improve your overall posture, making you look and feel more confident.
- Injury prevention: A weak lower back is a recipe for disaster when it comes to injury. But by doing dumbbell back extensions, you’ll be strengthening those muscles and reducing your risk of injury during other exercises or daily activities.
- Versatility: Dumbbell back extensions can be done with a variety of equipment, from a back extension bench to a stability ball or even just bodyweight. This means you can do the exercise at home, at the gym, or even in a hotel room.
Here’s how to do it:
- Grab a dumbbell and find a back extension bench (or you can use a stability ball if you don’t have a bench). Lie face down on the bench with your hips at the edge and your feet securely hooked under the footpads.
- Hold the dumbbell behind your head with both hands, elbows bent and close to your ears. Keep your head in a neutral position (don’t tuck your chin or look up) and engage your core.
- Slowly lift your upper body off the bench as high as you can, squeezing your lower back muscles as you go. Keep your elbows close to your ears and your head in a neutral position.
- Pause for a moment at the top of the movement, then slowly lower your upper body back down to the starting position.
- Repeat for the desired number of reps, then switch to a lighter weight if you need to.
And that’s it! The dumbbell back extension is a great exercise for building a strong lower back, which is essential for good posture, healthy movement patterns, and injury prevention.
Dumbbell Bent Over Row
How to do the dumbbell bent over row:
- Build a killer back: The dumbbell bent over row is all about pulling those dumbbells up towards your chest, which means your back muscles gotta work hard to get the job done. By doing this exercise regularly, you’ll be able to build a strong, defined back that looks and performs like a boss.
- Improve your posture: When you have a strong back, you’ll be able to maintain good posture throughout the day, which is essential for avoiding pain and injury. Plus, good posture just looks better, so you’ll be turning heads left and right.
- Boost your metabolism: The dumbbell bent over row is a compound exercise, which means it works multiple muscle groups at once. This can help you burn more calories during your workout and boost your metabolism long after you’re done.
- Get swole: Let’s be real, who doesn’t want big, ripped biceps? The dumbbell bent over row works your biceps as well as your back, helping you build those guns you’ve always wanted.
Here’s how to do it:
- Grab a pair of dumbbells and stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Bend your knees slightly and lean forward at the hips, keeping your back straight and your core engaged.
- Hold the dumbbells with your palms facing towards your body and your arms straight down towards the ground. This is your starting position.
- Slowly pull the dumbbells up towards your chest, squeezing your shoulder blades together as you go. Keep your elbows close to your body and your wrists straight.
- Pause for a moment at the top of the movement, then slowly lower the dumbbells back down to the starting position.
- Repeat for the desired number of reps, then switch to a lighter weight if you need to.
And that’s it! The dumbbell bent over row is a killer exercise that’ll help you build a strong, defined back and biceps. Just remember to keep your back straight and your core engaged, and you’ll be good to go!
Dumbbell Side Plank
The dumbbell side plank is one of the best lower back dumbbell exercises. out there for building a strong core and improving your overall fitness. This move targets your obliques, which are the muscles on the sides of your abs, making it an awesome way to tone your waistline and improve your posture.
Here are some reasons why you should add dumbbell side planks to your workout routine:
- Build a strong core: The dumbbell side plank is all about holding your body in a stable position, which means your core muscles gotta work hard to keep you steady. By doing this exercise regularly, you’ll be able to build a strong, stable core that looks and performs like a boss.
- Tone your waistline: If you’re looking to tighten up your waistline and get rid of love handles, the dumbbell side plank is a must-do exercise. This move targets your obliques, which are the muscles that wrap around your sides and help you maintain good posture.
- Improve your balance: The dumbbell side plank requires you to balance your body on one arm and one leg, which is a great way to improve your balance and stability. Plus, having better balance can help you avoid injury and perform better in other exercises.
- Boost your metabolism: Like all plank exercises, the dumbbell side plank is a great way to boost your metabolism and burn more calories. By holding your body in a stable position, you’ll be engaging multiple muscle groups at once, which can help you burn more calories during your workout and throughout the day.
Here’s how to do it:
- Grab a dumbbell and lie on your side, propping yourself up on your elbow. Make sure your elbow is directly under your shoulder and your forearm is flat on the ground. Your feet should be stacked on top of each other.
- Place the dumbbell on your hip, holding it in place with your top hand. This is your starting position.
- Engage your core and lift your hips off the ground, keeping your body in a straight line from your head to your feet. Hold this position for as long as you can, making sure to keep your abs and glutes tight.
- Lower your hips back down to the ground and repeat for the desired number of reps.
- Switch to the other side and repeat the exercise.
Dumbbell B Stance Deadlift
The dumbbell B stance deadlift is a super effective exercise that’ll help you build strength, improve your balance, and target your glutes and hamstrings like nobody’s business. It’s one of the best lower back dumbbell exercises. This is similar to my guide on the b stance hip thrust.
This move involves standing on one leg while lifting a dumbbell with the opposite hand, which may seem simple, but trust me, it’s anything but easy!
Here are some reasons why you should add the dumbbell B stance deadlift to your workout routine:
- Build strength: The dumbbell B stance deadlift is a great way to build strength in your lower body and core. By standing on one leg and lifting a weight with the opposite hand, you’ll be challenging your muscles to work harder than they would in a regular deadlift.
- Improve balance and stability: Since the dumbbell B stance deadlift requires you to stand on one leg, it’s a great way to improve your balance and stability. Plus, having better balance can help you avoid injury and perform better in other exercises.
- Target your glutes and hamstrings: The dumbbell B stance deadlift is a killer exercise for targeting your glutes and hamstrings, which are two of the largest muscle groups in your lower body. By doing this move regularly, you’ll be able to build a strong, toned booty and improve your overall lower body strength.
- Increase flexibility: Since the dumbbell B stance deadlift involves a deep hip hinge, it can help improve your flexibility and range of motion. This can be especially beneficial for athletes or anyone who wants to improve their overall mobility.
How to do it:
- Grab a dumbbell and stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.
- Take a big step back with your left foot, placing it behind your right foot. Your left heel should be lifted off the ground.
- Hold the dumbbell in your right hand and let your arm hang down by your side. This is your starting position.
- Engage your core and hinge forward at your hips, keeping your back flat and your chest lifted. Your left foot should stay planted on the ground as you hinge forward.
- Lower the dumbbell towards the ground, keeping it close to your body as you lower it. Make sure to keep your back flat and your core engaged throughout the movement.
- Once you feel a stretch in your hamstrings, squeeze your glutes and push through your right foot to stand back up to the starting position.
- Repeat the exercise for the desired number of reps, then switch sides and repeat with the dumbbell in your left hand.
Pros and Cons of Doing Lower Back Workouts with Dumbbells
Here’s a rundown of the pros and cons of doing lower back workouts with dumbbells:
- Mix it up: Dumbbells can add some spice to your lower back workouts by offering a range of exercises that target different areas. This variety can keep your workouts interesting and challenging.
- Control: With dumbbells, you have more control over the weight you’re lifting, which can be especially helpful if you’re recovering from an injury or just starting out. You can start with lighter weights and gradually increase as you get stronger.
- Core strength: Lower back exercises with dumbbells often engage your core muscles as well, which can help improve your overall strength and stability.
- Convenience: Dumbbells are relatively small and easy to store, making them a convenient choice for home workouts.
- Limited weight range: While dumbbells are great for lighter weights, they may not offer enough resistance for more advanced lifters who need heavier weights to challenge their muscles.
- Form: Dumbbells require proper form and technique to avoid injury, which can be more challenging for beginners who are just starting to learn how to lift.
- Imbalance: If you’re not careful, using dumbbells for lower back exercises can lead to muscle imbalances, especially if you always use the same weight or only work one side of your body.
- Cost: While dumbbells are generally affordable, purchasing a range of weights can add up, making them a more expensive option than other lower back workout equipment like resistance bands or bodyweight exercises.
Anatomy of the Lower Back
Back in high school I got a “B” in anatomy. I definitely wasn’t the best student, but funny enough still remember some things with the help of google.
The lower back, or lumbar spine, is made up of a complex network of muscles, bones, and nerves that work together to support the weight of your upper body and allow for movement.
I’m obviously not a doctor, so we won’t get into every part and what they do. BUT- here are the key ones:
- Spinal column: The lumbar spine is made up of five vertebrae that sit between the thoracic spine (your upper back) and the sacrum (your pelvic bone).
- Muscles: The lower back muscles include the erector spinae, which run along the spine and help with extension and rotation, as well as the quadratus lumborum, which help with lateral flexion and stabilization.
- Nerves: The lumbar spine is also home to many important nerves that control movement and sensation in your lower body, including the sciatic nerve.
- Ligaments: The ligaments in the lower back help stabilize the spine and protect against injury.
- Discs: Between each vertebrae in the lumbar spine are intervertebral discs, which act as shock absorbers and allow for movement.
All of these parts work together to help you move, lift, and support your body throughout the day. Don’t end up like that old guy who walks hunched over because he doesn’t have a strong back.
The Best Lower Back Workout Program
The lower back is typically hit once or twice depending on your workout routine.
If you were doing the Arnold Split, you should hit it on chest/back day, and part of it on leg day.
Old school bodybuilders like Arnold incorporated exercises like back extensions, hyperextensions, and good mornings into his workout routine to hit his lower back from different angles and target different muscle fibers.
I recommend you do these at first.
If you are on a PPL (push pull legs) split, you are likely hitting the lower back on pull days or legs with deadlift.
Any other split, I couldn’t tell you.
Incorporate 1-2 exercises that target the lower back on whatever day works best for you. I personally do it on my chest/back day and add it in towards the end of hitting back.
What are the benefits of doing lower back exercises with dumbbells?
- Increased strength: Dumbbell exercises like deadlifts and rows can help you build lower back strength, which can improve your overall lifting ability and reduce your risk of injury.
- Improved posture: A strong lower back can help you maintain good posture, which can reduce strain on your back and neck muscles and make you look taller and more confident.
- Reduced back pain: Strengthening your lower back muscles can help reduce or prevent back pain, which is a common issue for many people.
- Better balance and stability: Lower back exercises can improve your core strength and balance, which can help you perform other exercises more safely and effectively.
- Increased calorie burn: Dumbbell exercises that target the lower back can be quite challenging, which means they can help you burn more calories and fat during your workout.
Of course, there are other exercises you can do to target your lower back, but using dumbbells can be a great way to add variety and challenge to your routine.
How can I train my lower back effectively?
Start with lighter weights and focus on proper form when doing these exercises. Trust me, you do not want a lower back injury.
The most effective way to train your lower back is to focus on form, but keep the intensity high. Think of this as incline benching.
You will seriously mess up your shoulders/chest if you do it wrong. BUT- it has a lot of benefits so you do it anyways.
You don’t hit incline bench at the same weight as regular bench. Use this analogy when training lower back and getting an idea of how intense you should go.
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