How To Get Weight Up For Dumbbell Bench Press?


This is common for most all heavy dumbbell exercises in getting the weight to the correct position so you can start your exercise. There are certain techniques you can use that will help assist in this situations.

How do you get dumbbells up for bench press?

Getting the dumbbells up can be tough so start with getting them right in front of you and bring them up to your knees. So you want to pick them up with your back straight to your knees and sit down so they are resting in your knees. Then as you are leaning back you are going to thrust your knees up to get the dumbbells up in one movement and keep your arms extended until you are ready to start. The best option is to have a training partner to assist.

You may at first want to try with a person there with you or at least with lighter weight then going to max right off the bat.

Trouble Getting Dumbbells Into Position

There is nothing worse then getting injured trying to lift and get your sets it. It is a whole other factor getting hurt while you are lifting which is where good form comes into play.

  1. Get your dumbbells set in front of your bench so you can lift while you are almost straddling the bench you are using.
  2. Lift the weights up to your knee level and sit down with them resting there all in one movement. (For adjustable dumbbells like powerblocks that we use would have the end on your knee with hammer grip).
  3. This is the most important part. You are going to use your momentum and a push from your legs to get the weights up in the air all in one motion. Make sure you are flexing your core.
  4. Rock back bringing your legs up to move the dumbbells up with elbows out.

Getting Dumbbell Into Position: Answers From Weightlifters

We also did a lot of research and brought all the answers here to one place for you to get the ultimate feedback. Our resources include Reddit/Fitness, Forum.BodyBuilding.com, and Quora. We have adjust grammar and spelling where needed along with removing any derogatory language.

Muscle Gainer Asked The Following Question:

About 4 days ago I hurt my left shoulder getting 90 lb dumbbells into position. I didn’t have any pain but I heard something like tearing cooked meat in my shoulder while I was trying to stablize my left arm once I was lying down on the bench with the heavy dumbbells. I had a hard time stabilizing my left arm at the bottom position and almost lost control because of the heavy weight and my groove was off but I managed to finally get my arms into proper position. I’m not sure if my technique is wrong for getting heavy dumbbells into position. Are the dumbbells suppose to be touching on my outer chest once I’m lying down into position for dumbbell bench press and then get my arms into start position? I don’t have them touch my outer chest and I just get my arms to starting position while lying back and I don’t know if this is the wrong way to do it.

  1. Jason1903: If you are in a gym get someone to give you a bump up when you go heavy. You waste a lot of energy getting them up initially.
  2. FLEX: I put the DBs on my knees and use my legs to pump them up into position.Here’s a vid of how I do it:
  3. Nick.V: i do what Flex does, but i keep my elbows locked straight so you start with your arms fully extended.
  4. Brighamw:
  5. Senorhobo: putting them on my knees like those guys and pumping them up has always worked for me, although I usually lift with a m8 so if i wobble or am struggling on getting the heavier ones up he will catch for me and stabalize.
  6. Stefanogym: to protect your shoulders, retract also the shoulder blades before starting and arrange like they stay in that position also when you hit the bench with your back and start pressing. you will be much more stable, stronger and safe. also… be confident
  7. DJAuto: If you use a low bench (in terms of height from floor), it will be easier to kick the DB’s into place.
  8. Coke_Zero: Most people “kick” them up into place (watch a YouTuve video of someone lifting fairly heavy DB’s to see how they do it). You could also try Powerhooks if you are in a home gym. It’s one of those things you have to work on if you like to use DB’s.
  9. Damien123666: i find that swinging them forward and laying back at same time works well…ie… i hold them sat on a bench down by my sides then swing them forward and up while laying down, or do be afrade to ask random people to spot you or help you get them up
  10. Pazzadean: Try dropping the weight then working your way back up.
  11. Cobhc: For incline I kick up each weight individually, stabilize then lift. On flat I just start the press from a rest position. I’d rather have a spotter, tbh.

Dumbbell Bench Press Form

How To Get Up From Dumbbell Bench Press?

Getting up after dumbbell bench press can also be tricky. You need to drop the weights as gentle as you can before lifting up. If the weight isn’t too heavy and you have strong core you can use the weight from the dumbbells to get up. This is not for beginners however. If you are beginner drop the weights (gently) and get up so you don’t injure yourself.

The other option is always to train with a partner so they can help handle the dumbbells both for starting and finishing the set.

Final Thoughts

When trying to get your weights up for dumbbell bench press your best option is having a spotter help you get those heavy weights into position. If you don’t have anybody to spot you or you are by yourself then follow the video examples above.

Try with less weight at first until you get the routine down then up your weights. It will help out greatly in getting that max weight for your sets. A good point was brought up about wasting your energy to get that weight up there you need to remember this and know you are going to get fatigued much quicker then with a barbell.

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