DO NOT Make These 3 Dumbbell Training Mistakes

If you’ve ever lifted weights before then, you probably know that dumbbell training is a common and effective way of working out. But, as with any form of exercise, there are ways to do dumbbell training incorrectly.

I saw it again, yesterday in the gym. A few dumbbell training mistakes.

They happen all over the gym. I am sure they happen at home for people who work out with dumbbells.

Hey, this is Rick Kaselj from

I wanted to go through the 3 Common Dumbbell Mistakes that lead to injury and pain.

CLICK HERE to watch the video on Youtube

Let’s start with the first exercise.

1. Shoulder Press

Wrong Shoulder Press

The Shoulder Press – Bringing the arm out to the side, pressing up overhead, and coming back down.

(In the start photo, I needed to have the left elbow at 90 degrees and the wrist more neutral.)

Being in that position with the arm out to the side (0 degrees of flexion) and the arm at 90 degrees out to the body (abduction) puts a lot of stress on the shoulder, grinding up the shoulder, and increases the risk of a shoulder injury.

Correct Shoulder Press

Correcting the Shoulder Press

To decrease the risk of injury, you can bring that elbow and the arm a little bit to about 30 degrees of horizontal adduction and then press up and come back down. That helps decrease shoulder stress and the risk of injury.

2. Dumbbell Press

Wrong Dumbbell Press

Wrong Dumbbell Press

It is bringing that elbow to the side and having that arm at 90 degrees to the body (0 degrees of flexion and 90 degrees of abduction). Once again, that puts a lot of stress on that shoulder, loading up the rotator cuff, and grinding out that shoulder.

Correct Dumbbell Press

Correcting the Dumbbell Press

What you can do to turn it from an injury-creating exercise to an injury-preventing exercise is to bring that elbow down to about 45 degrees to the body. That is still working the chest, but it ends up putting the shoulder in a better position.

3. Picking Up the Dumbbells

Picking Up the Dumbbell 1

Wrong way of picking up the Dumbbell

The third common mistake I often see in the gym is how people pick up the dumbbells off the floor or out of the rack.

We often hear where people pick up something light off the floor, like their socks, and throw it out their back.

Picking Up the Dumbbell 2

The correct way of picking up the Dumbbell

When you are reaching down to grab the dumbbells and pick them up off the floor, make sure that you are in a good position so that your back is in a good position and your movement is happening at your hips.

Don’t Swing the Dumbbells During Your Training

It’s widespread for people to unintentionally swing the dumbbells while lifting, which is a huge mistake. First, it’s essential to understand that each exercise is meant to work for a specific muscle group. Ideally, you want to be able to train your muscles with heavier weights and increase the intensity of your workouts, but this isn’t possible when you’re swinging the weights. When you swing the weights, you’re also using your core muscles, which means that your core muscles are getting a much less intense workout than they should be. When you swing the dumbbells, you’re also increasing your risk of injury, which is not something that you want to happen.


Give those a go and think about the exercises that you are doing.

If you are doing the dumbbell shoulder press, bring it out from the side at about 30 degrees, and your shoulders will be thankful.

If you are doing the dumbbell bench press, instead of the arm at 90 degrees, bring it back down a little bit to about 45 degrees, and your shoulders will be very thankful.

And then, look and watch how you are bringing the dumbbells off the floor.

This is Rick Kaselj from saying take care and bye-bye.

P.S. – If you are looking for some great dumbbell workouts, make sure to check out Tone & Tighten Dumbbell WorkoutTone & Tighten Dumbbell Workout