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!

507 Comments
Abhi
Posted on: Sun, 01/22/2023 - 14:47

Hey, after finishing this 12 week program, what should I do next with the equipment i have. Since this program was targeted for building lean muscle, I’m looking for something that doesn’t necessarily have to be for building lean muscle as I’m currently on a bulk.

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Roger
Posted on: Wed, 01/25/2023 - 08:50

What equipment do you have? Anything besides dumbbells and bodyweight?

Abhi
Posted on: Wed, 01/25/2023 - 17:31

i got a power rack and a pullup bar

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Roger
Posted on: Thu, 01/26/2023 - 20:07

If you don't find anything on this link, let me know and I'll try to find you something.

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/how-to-choose-your-next-train...

André
Posted on: Wed, 01/18/2023 - 08:35

Perhaps a silly question: are there serious objections to performing this 6 day workout in 2 blocks of one week. Point is that I want to workout 3 days a week and I like the variety in exercises, which is lacking in 3 day workouts.

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Roger
Posted on: Wed, 01/18/2023 - 21:53

If you're not an advanced lifter, it could impact your recovery. If you feel you can handle it, try it, but monitor your recovery. Once you feel like it's affecting you negatively, return to the normal program.

André
Posted on: Thu, 01/19/2023 - 10:20

Hi Roger,
thanks for your quick reply. I think you misunderstood me. Instead of 1 week, I intend to do the 6 day workout in 2 weeks, so recovery won't be a problem. I'm an intermediate lifter and more or less forced to bring down my workout days to 3, hence my question.
Anyway, thanks for your attention.
Cheers,
André

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Roger
Posted on: Tue, 01/24/2023 - 07:18

Then, yep, I misunderstood you. Apologies, André. In that case, you should be fine. Just make sure you give them all you got when you do train.

All the best, and thanks for reading M&S!

Nick
Posted on: Fri, 01/13/2023 - 09:31

hi
i dont like to do the floor press exercise on push A day so can i substitute it with something else like pushup or dip or anything push related exercise?

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Roger
Posted on: Wed, 01/18/2023 - 21:51

Sure.

Rakin prasla
Posted on: Tue, 01/10/2023 - 20:32

Do the bicep workouts hit all 3 parts of your bicep?

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Roger
Posted on: Wed, 01/18/2023 - 21:51

Dumbbell curls for the biceps brachii, hammers for the brachialis, and zottman and reverse curls will hit both, but also work the coracobrachialis.

Tom
Posted on: Mon, 01/09/2023 - 22:42

When should I take breaks?
Can you tell me what days to do what workout?

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Roger
Posted on: Wed, 01/18/2023 - 21:50

Hard to do that without knowing work/school schedule and life commitments. I usually suggest training no more than three days in a row without at least one off.

KD
Posted on: Sun, 01/08/2023 - 01:27

I have another question. If I were to add wide grip upright rows and tricep kickback's, where would I add them? They are my favorite exercise.

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Roger
Posted on: Wed, 01/18/2023 - 21:49

Upright rows on one of the pull workouts, kickbacks on the end of one of the push workouts.

KD
Posted on: Sun, 01/08/2023 - 00:53

Can we do A and B workouts in the same day? Such as doing Push A in AM and Push B in PM

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Roger
Posted on: Wed, 01/18/2023 - 21:48

If you're not an advanced lifter, it can negatively impact your recovery. We suggest following the program as recommended.

Dantello
Posted on: Thu, 01/05/2023 - 05:27

Hey staff,

I started this program 6 months ago and went straight into the 6-day plan. 3 months ago I began subbing in barbell lifts for the bigger exercises. I’m an ectomorph and have gained about 23 pounds to reach 180lbs—everyone says my physique is awesome. However, I don’t want to plateau.

Since I never did the 3-, 4- or 5-day plans, should I circle back to those? I have access to barbells now so maybe I should move to another program? I’ve also added some ab work every other day. I’m looking to get to 195lbs. If anyone has advice my IG is @Leaddemon.

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Roger
Posted on: Tue, 01/17/2023 - 13:47

The five day would be a great choice. That will be comparable volume, but the extra day of recovery could help prevent plateauing. Will leave this up so people can DM you if they like. Check back here to the comments as well because people may offer suggestions here as well.

Congrats on the progress, and thanks for reading M&S!

Chloe
Posted on: Tue, 12/20/2022 - 06:24

By any chance, do you have a similar 6 day workout program without the need of equipment (e.g bench), or what to replace from this program requiring a bench (e.g chest supported db row), great workout btw, hope to hear from you.

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Roger
Posted on: Tue, 12/27/2022 - 08:43

We don't, but that is a good idea. In the meantime, simply use the floor for flat exercises, and do simple bent-over rows with the dumbbells. Skip incline movements for now until you can get your hands on a bench.

C Bates
Posted on: Thu, 12/15/2022 - 13:20

Doesn't seem to be anything in here for lats, any suggestion

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Roger
Posted on: Fri, 12/23/2022 - 12:42

The dumbbell pullover is for lats. Yes, it can target the chest too, but you can get a deep lat stretch and contraction if you focus on the back more than the pecs.

Kurt
Posted on: Fri, 11/25/2022 - 11:55

Looks like a great workout. If I wanted to add shrugs and wide grip pull ups where would be the best place to add them?

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Roger
Posted on: Sat, 11/26/2022 - 12:57

Add the pullups at the beginning of Pull Workout A, and the shrugs before biceps in the middle of Pull Workout B. Hope this helps.

Rakin prasla
Posted on: Sat, 11/19/2022 - 20:01

On day 6, for the dumbbell split squat exercise, do you do 4 sets for EACH leg, like switching which side you bend. And for day 5, same question, do you do the one arm dumbbell row 5 sets on each arm, switching which arm the dumbbell is on?

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Roger
Posted on: Fri, 11/25/2022 - 20:53

For each side, and that is the case with all exercises.

Rakin prasla
Posted on: Sat, 11/26/2022 - 18:11

So for the dumbbell split squat it will be 8 sets total?

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Roger
Posted on: Sun, 11/27/2022 - 21:23

Yes

TJ
Posted on: Mon, 11/14/2022 - 19:10

Hi, I've been following this 6 day workout for a couple months now with good results. Unfortunately, I'm dealing with some long term hand injuries and I'm going to have to switch away from dumbbells, at least for a while. Is there a 6 day/week machine equivalent of this? I saw a 4 day/week machine workout on your site. Perhaps that could be modified to 6 days/week? Thanks so much!

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Roger
Posted on: Sun, 11/20/2022 - 17:14

I don't think we have a six-day machine workout, but that is a good idea, TJ. Thanks for the suggestion.

First and foremost, talk to your doctor before taking this on, but you could do this one and repeat it twice for six days if your doctor clears you to train.

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/workouts/machines-only-3-day-split

Prince Flores
Posted on: Sat, 11/12/2022 - 03:24

been following the routine, now i am doing the work outin 3days. A and B are being done on same day.

adding reps and sets since i have limitted weights on our house.

Ollie Turnbull
Posted on: Mon, 11/07/2022 - 21:21

Should I progressively overload on this workout

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Roger
Posted on: Sat, 11/12/2022 - 11:11

I highly recommend it, Ollie.

Jack
Posted on: Fri, 11/04/2022 - 10:11

Been following your plan from 3,4,5 and now this 6 days workout. I'm on week 10 on this 6 days workout and had made slow but great gains since then. I am able to do bench press at 2x12@50,1x10@50,1x10@45,1x7@45 and I feel like I can do more on the first set, but run out of fuel quickly by the 4th and 5th set。 I also seem to be stuck at this for 2-3 weeks at a time and progresses very slowly trying to up the reps for the last 2 sets. Should I try to increase the weights for the first sets even more or continue on until I am able to hit 12reps on the last 2 sets despite the slow progress? Thanks in advance!

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Roger
Posted on: Thu, 11/10/2022 - 06:49

How ya doing, Jack?

Go heavier on the first sets, but take a little more rest between sets. That extra 15-30 seconds more can make a difference. As you progress, it can be harder to see results because you're body is getting used to the stress from training. Stick with it, though. Congrats on the progress you've made already, and thanks for reading M&S!

Carolyn Said
Posted on: Wed, 10/26/2022 - 20:45

Thanks for great workout plans! How much rest time do you recommend between each set? How much rest time between different exercises?

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Roger
Posted on: Wed, 10/26/2022 - 21:33

Per the text in the article, "Keep rest periods between 45-60 seconds when performing each workout." That would also apply to in between exercises.

Nathan
Posted on: Thu, 10/13/2022 - 10:41

Firstly thanks for putting together and sharing these great workout plans.

i'm about to start the 6 day plan and was wondering, do i complete all reps and sets of the first exercise before moving on to the next exercise or can i work my way down the list a set at a time?

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Roger
Posted on: Fri, 10/14/2022 - 09:51

Do all sets and reps for the first before moving on to the next one. If you're advanced and want a challenge, then you could do the circuits by working your way down the line a set at a time, but you should do the traditional method usually.

Jacob
Posted on: Sun, 09/18/2022 - 10:10

Hello I just wanted to know about how many calories I’d be burning every workout.

Thanks

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Roger
Posted on: Thu, 09/22/2022 - 17:04

The only way to determine that is to wear a smartwatch or calorie tracker and figure that out on your own. Factors such as activity level, intensity, your size, and metabolism all influence your calorie burning ability.

CJ
Posted on: Sat, 09/03/2022 - 14:30

Is this 6 day workout better than the 3, 4, or 5 assuming I have the time to do it consistently? For example, I’m doing a full body right now where I got each muscle 3 times a week. This routine would make it more so each muscle is hit twice a week but with more volume on each day. Confused which is better for muscle/Hypertrophy.

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Roger
Posted on: Sat, 09/03/2022 - 21:06

Hey CJ, I think you should go with this one personally if you're an experienced lifter. If you're relatively new to the training, you may want to stick to the full body plan.

Sajan
Posted on: Thu, 09/01/2022 - 04:11

Can i do tCan I choose this exercise strength training level instead of hypertrophy?

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Roger
Posted on: Thu, 09/01/2022 - 20:33

Sure you can.

Rayan
Posted on: Sun, 08/28/2022 - 15:04

What about Triceps?
There is only 2 exercises for triceps in a week

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Roger
Posted on: Mon, 08/29/2022 - 08:26

The triceps are working when you train chest and shoulders as well. If you feel you need more, then add one more exercise for similar sets and reps.

Shalen
Posted on: Mon, 08/22/2022 - 08:55

Hi guys, love the workout plans,
I am currently using 10kg dumbbells for my workouts
And I've gotten too strong for them anymore, so I've been adding more sets to my workouts, any other tips so I can still build muscle while I wait to get more weights?