How to do Dumbbell Archer

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Difficulty: Medium

Impact Level: Normal

Target Body Parts: triceps, biceps, upper back, chest, shoulders


Stand with your feet at hip width and core engaged to support you throughout the movement. Start with a dumbbell in each hand, by your sides, lift your right arm out and up to shoulder height, in front of you keeping your arm as straight as possible. At the same time, draw the left hand dumbbell up and back to your left arm pit, so your left elbow points behind you. Imagine you are pulling back the string of a bow, like an archer. Control the dumbbells back down to your sides and repeat on the other side. Alternate sides for the duration of the exercise.

How to make Dumbbell Archer easier

This exercise can be made easier by changing to lighter dumbbells or if you don’t have a lighter pair, try it with your arms slightly bent at the elbow to reduce the length of the lever. The other option is to start with no weights to learn the movement then try it with a tin of food in each hand, or 2 small (same size) bottles of water in each hand. Also check out our Dumbbell Front Raise and Dumbbell Hammercurl exercises as ways to build up strength before tackling the Dumbbell Archer.

How to make Dumbbell Archer more challenging

This exercise can be made harder by changing to heavier dumbbells, but only go up in small weight increments and made sure you can do the exercise with perfect form form for the required duration before doing so.

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