Dumbbell Swing

Exercise Summary
Primary Muscle(s) Hamstrings
Secondary Muscle(s) Glutes, QuadsAbdominals
Equipment Dumbbell
Emphasis Compound
Type Pull

Dumbbell Swing Instruction

  • Set the DB on the ground in between your feet.
    • The DB is resting on its head.
  • Maintain a slight knee bend with your core braced and shoulders pinned back. 
    • Neutral spine with your ribs stacked on-top of your pelvis.
  • Brace your core and hinge at the hips to grip the DB head with both hands and lift a foot off the floor.
    • You are holding the head of the DB, not the handle.
  • Swing the DB back subtly between your legs.
  • Reverse the motion rapidly, by extending the hips and contracting the glutes.
  • The momentum of the DB should carry it in front of you to shoulder height. 
    • Your arms are passive, they are not controlling the movement.
  • Allow the DB to travel back between your legs by hinging your hips on the descent. 


  • This movement is athletic and rhythmic in nature so you should not feel stiff. However, maintain a braced core and neutral spine.
  • Use your glutes to initiate the movement, not your arms. The arms are levers between your body and the DB.
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