There are a wide variety of exercises available to facilitate your muscular development and of these by far the best are free weight training exercises. Free weight exercises offer increased muscular development as opposed to nautilus style machines because of the additional resistance these machines place on supporting muscles. Dumbbell exercises are a kind of free weight exercise that has been around for a very long time. In fact, dumbbells are the world’s oldest known work out instrument and can be traced back several thousand years to ancient times. Dumbbells offer a reliable and effective means of building muscle.

Like most other free weight exercises, dumbbells facilitate muscle growth by placing resistance on stabilizing and supporting muscles. As compared to nautilus machines and even body weight exercises, dumbbells offer a much greater range of motion and actually mimic natural body motion. Greater range of motion and broader muscle resistance mean substantial muscle gains, one reason that dumbbells have been around as long as they have. Utilizing dumbbells during workouts allows you to target specific areas of the body more effectively than would ordinarily be possible.

Use of dumbbells during a workout requires strict safety considerations. Because dumbbells are free weights there is always the possibility of injury from a dropped or mishandled weight. Before handling dumbbells it’s always a good idea to do some muscle warm ups in order to loosen and condition each muscle. Accidents are much more likely to happen when your muscles have not been properly warmed up. To warm your muscles up before using dumbbells, try lifting a weight that allows you to do a minimum of fifteen repetitions. In addition, try basic warm up exercises such as stretches and extensions. Using a spotter during a dumbbell workout can also greatly reduce the likelihood of an accident.

Most people commonly associate dumbbells with the triceps and biceps but in reality dumbbells are effective on many of the bodies muscle groups. A common exercise for working out the biceps is the hammer curl, which also has the distinction of being one of my favorite exercises. To perform the hammer curl, grip a dumbbell in each arm that will allow you to do at least six repetitions. Grip the weight in such a way that the weights are facing up and down instead of side to side. With your elbows held tight against your body, curl each weight towards you in a ‘hammer’ like motion. Try lifting each weight one at a time instead of simultaneously to reduce fatigue.

There are many other exercises that can be performed with dumbbells such as shoulder press, chest flies, bench rows, and lunges. Not all of these dumbbell exercises will be right for your particular workout regimen, but you should incorporate at least one dumbbell exercise. Always remember to warm up before lifting dumbbells and never attempt to lift a weight that is too heavy for you.

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