6 Daring Dumbbell Burpees

What is a Dumbbell Burpee?

I know, I know.. Who likes burpees? They are a great – but very tough exercise. Well, we’re about to take it up a notch.  It’s go time – Izzy Mandelbaum style..

Welcome to dumbbell burpees. What is a dumbbell burpee, you ask? Well, a dumbbell burpee is like a regular burpee except that in each hand, you hold a dumbbell while performing the burpee. This extra weight adds resistance and makes the dumbbell burpee even more challenging than a regular burpee (if that’s even possible).  All aboard the pain train!  😉

How To Do a Dumbbell Burpee?

Grab a dumbbell in each hand. When beginning with dumbbell burpees, play it safe and use lighter weight dumbbells.

  1. Just like a regular burpee, your hands and dumbbells should be shoulder width apart.
  2. Drop to the floor using the dumbbells to support your body.
  3. Kick your feet back so you are in a plank position.
  4. Do a push-up while still holding the dumbbells.
  5. Then jump your feet up towards your hands, jump up and repeat.

Muscles Used

Dumbbell burpees use multiple muscle groups. They are a full-body workout that works your quadriceps and hamstrings in your lower body.  They hit your obliques and rectus abdominal muscles in your core.  As well as your deltoids, pecs, and triceps in your upper body.

6 Dumbbell Burpees

Below are six dumbbell burpee variations to shake things up a little and keep you interested. All six comprise the basic dumbbell burpee with some variations. It’s go time!!

Dumbbell Burpee Press

This variation is the same as the basic dumbbell burpee, with one exception. When you stand at the end, press the dumbbells overhead and back down before repeating the burpee.

Dumbbell Burpee Step Up

The dumbbell burpee step up variation is the same as the basic dumbbell burpee, except that at the end, you step up on a box while holding the dumbbells and then step back down.

Dumbbell Burpee Row

In this variation, after the push-up while still in the plank position, do a dumbbell row with each arm before finishing the burpee.

Dumbbell Burpee to Lunge

Perform a normal dumbbell burpee. But at the end of the burpee, perform a lunge while holding the dumbbells. Alternate legs to lunge with after each burpee.

Dumbbell Burpee Man Maker

This variation is a combination of multiple dumbbell burpees with a squat thrown in towards the end. The sequence goes like this. Do a dumbbell burpee row variation and at the end, after you jump up, perform a squat thrust down and up, while also doing a dumbbell press.

Dumbbell Burpee Devil Press

You do a devil press by performing a normal dumbbell burpee, but at the end you do a double dumbbell snatch directly overhead.


Burpees are a great full body exercise used in strength training for their aerobic benefits.  Dumbbell burpees make the normal burpee even harder as you hold dumbbells while performing the exercise for added resistance.

Dumbbell burpees target the lower body (quads, hamstrings and calves), the upper body (chest, shoulders and triceps) and the core.

In this article, we covered 6 dumbbell burpee variations.  They are 1) dumbbell burpee press, 2) dumbbell burpee step up, 3) dumbbell burpee row, 4) dumbbell burpee to lunge, 5) dumbbell burpee man maker and 6) dumbbell burpee devil press.

Try mixing in some of the above 6 dumbbell burpee variations when you tire of normal dumbbell burpees.  If you’ve never done dumbbell burpees before, take them slow and be sure to use a lower weight dumbbell than you normally lift with (at least until you get used to the exercise).  Before you know it, you will be in better shape than Izzy Mandelbaum!

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Pat Gould

I'm an avid runner having completed 5 full marathons and countless half's. I love everything about the outdoors and doing my best to stay active!

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