Targeted 20 Minute Dumbbell Arm Workout At Home

Welcome to the ultimate 20 minute dumbbell arm workout at home. 

Where time is precious and convenience is king, this workout is your ticket to powerful arms without ever stepping foot in a gym. 

As a certified personal trainer, I’ll help you unleash your inner beast and redefine what you thought was possible in just 20 minutes.

Here’s what’s coming up. 

Can You Build Muscle In 20 Minutes? 
Why Do A Quick Workout? 
Your Dumbbell Arm Workout At Home
Step By Step Instructions
3 FAQs About Arm Workouts 
Bottom Line 

Can You Build Muscle In 20 Minutes?

Yes, you can! This is an important question to ask, because many individuals don’t have a lot of time to devote to the gym, but are still committed to being fit for life. 

The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity per week. That comes out to about to about 21 minutes per day. 

You can check off the box with the AHA that 20 minutes of exercise is sufficient to build muscle. 

Need more proof? Another credible source in Healthline says that weight training for 20 to 30 minutes for 2 to 3 times a week is enough to see results. 

Why Do A Quick Workout?

dumbbell arm workout at home

It all starts with the fact that quality is better than quantity.  

20 minutes goes by fast, so you’ll have your game face on and be ready to give it your all in those 20 minutes. 

Whereas a 45 to 90 minute gym session may not be as productive, especially with rest and looking at your phone. 

The quality of the 20 minute workout has a chance of being higher because of your focus and determination to get a good workout in a short time. 

Working out for 20 minutes is better than not working out at all.  

This study done with older people found that all moderate to vigorous activity was associated with lower fat and better metabolic health. 

While exercise has many physical benefits, the mental benefit is worth its weight in gold. 

Doing this 20 minute dumbbell arm workout at home can help clear your head. It gives you control over your time and help flex your muscles and your grit. 

The most important thing is that you are building good habits that can translate into a commitment to be the healthiest version of yourself. 

Your Dumbbell Arm Workout At Home

Here’s your 20 minute dumbbell arm workout routine! 

This is perfect to do at home because the only equipment you need is dumbbells. But you can do it at the gym too, for a wider selection of weights. 

All you need is a single pair of dumbbells where you can do 10-15 reps. If you have a few pairs at home, then that’s an added bonus. 

  • Don’t have dumbbells? No problem. Use water jugs or milk jugs instead. You can also get a backpack or purse and fill it with cans of food and use those. Get creative and see what you can come up with.  

This is a well rounded and complete dumbbell arm workout at home with 8 exercises: 4 for biceps and 4 for triceps. 

There’s only 1 set per exercise, but that does not make it easy. Give this workout a go twice a week and watch your arms explode. 

If you want to work your other “show muscles,” check out my dumbbell chest and shoulder workout.

Step By Step Instructions

Pronated Curls 

Feel the burn intensify in your brachialis muscles as you hoist each dumbbell skyward with determination.  

How To Do It

  • Stand tall, holding a dumbbell in each hand with an overhand (pronated) grip, palms facing down.
  • Keep your elbows close to your body and your upper arms stationary.
  • With controlled movements, curl the weights upwards towards your shoulders, contracting your biceps at the top of the movement.
  • Lower the dumbbells back to the starting position and repeat for 15 reps. 

Common Mistake

Not keeping your wrist in a neutral position can put more strain on your wrists.

Supinated Curls With Upper Back Against the Wall 

Prepare to command each curl with precision because of the back support that will take out curling with momentum.  

How To Do It

  • Stand with your upper back against a wall, feet shoulder-width apart.
  • Hold a dumbbell in each hand with an underhand (supinated) grip, palms facing upwards.
  • Keep your upper back against the wall but scoot your toes outward.
  • With elbows close to the body, curl the dumbbells upwards towards your shoulders, squeezing your biceps at the top of the movement.
  • Lower the weights back down to the starting position and maintain control throughout the 15 reps. 

Common Mistake

Allowing the elbows to drift too far forward during supinated curls can shift the focus away from the biceps and onto the shoulders.

Hammer Curls With
Upper Back Against the Wall

Dominate with a stronger grip, burning forearms, and thicker biceps. Your brachioradialis will thank you. 

How To Do It

  • Stand tall, holding a dumbbell in each hand with a neutral grip (palms facing each other).
  • Keep your elbows close to your body and your upper arms stationary.
  • Curl the dumbbells upwards towards your shoulders in a hammer-like motion, maintaining the neutral grip throughout the movement.
  • Squeeze your biceps at the top of the movement, then slowly lower the weights back down to the starting position.
  • Repeat for 12 reps. 

Common Mistake

Swinging the weights or using momentum to lift during hammer curls can diminish the effectiveness of the exercise and increase the risk of injury. 

Concentration Curls

Brace yourself for the ultimate test of arm strength, pump, and focus with concentration curls. With one arm isolated, you’ll channel all your energy into each rep, sculpting a bicep peak that is legendary. 

How To Do It

  • Sit on a bench or chair with your feet planted firmly on the ground and knees slightly bent.
  • Hold a dumbbell in one hand and place the back of that arm against the inner thigh of the same side.
  • Allow the arm to fully extend towards the ground, maintaining a slight bend in the elbow to keep tension on the biceps.
  • Curl the dumbbell upwards towards your shoulder, keeping your upper arm stationary and squeezing your biceps at the top of the movement.
  • Slowly lower the weight back down to the starting position and repeat for 12 reps.

Common Mistake

Moving your upper arm and not remaining stable can take the emphasis of the bicep and minimize gains. 

Tricep Kickbacks

Unleash an assault on your triceps with kickbacks and endure through an unbelievable burn. 

How To Do It

  • Hold a dumbbell in each hand and stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.
  • Bend your knees slightly and hinge forward at the hips, keeping your back straight and core engaged.
  • Keep your elbows close to your body and your upper arms parallel to the ground.
  • Extend your arms straight back behind you, fully engaging your triceps, and squeeze at the top of the movement.
  • Slowly lower the dumbbells back to the starting position with control.
  • Repeat for 12 reps.

Common Mistake

Jerking the dumbbell back can hurt your shoulder or arm. Be mindful to control the weight when kicking back for triceps. 

Single Arm Overhead
Tricep Extensions

These will leave your triceps raw with strength and power that demands respect. You’ll work out all weaknesses with unilateral movements.  

How To Do It

  • Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, holding a dumbbell in one hand.
  • Raise the dumbbell overhead, keeping your elbow close to your ear and your palm facing inward.
  • Lower the weight behind your head by bending your elbow, allowing it to flex and extend.
  • Keep your upper arm stationary and focus on extending your forearm upward to straighten your arm.
  • Pause briefly at the top, squeezing your triceps, then slowly lower the weight back to the starting position.
  • Repeat for 10 reps before switching to the other arm.

Common Mistake

Allowing the elbow to flare out to the side can place unnecessary strain on the shoulder joint, so keep your elbow close to your ear. 

Single Arm Tate Press

Hit the triceps from all angles! Unleash a barrage on your triceps with this unilateral movement. 

How To Do It

  • Lie on a bench or flat surface with your feet planted firmly on the ground and core engaged.
  • Hold a dumbbell in one hand with an overhand grip, positioning it directly above your shoulder.
  • Bend your elbow to lower the weight towards your chest, keeping your upper arm stationary and your palm facing away from you.
  • Press the dumbbell upwards in a diagonal motion, extending your arm fully and squeezing your triceps at the top of the movement.
  • Lower the weight back down to the starting position with control.
  • Repeat for the 10 reps before switching to the other arm.

Common Mistake

Having your elbow at the wrong angle can make for awkward motion and even shoulder pain. Adjust the angle first without weight.  

Bench Or Chair Dips

Test your limits with ultimate pushing power through the descent and rise of building stronger triceps. 

How To Do It

  • Position yourself facing away from a bench or chair, gripping the edge firmly with your hands shoulder-width apart.
  • Extend your legs out in front of you, heels resting on the ground, and keep your back straight.
  • Lower your body by bending your elbows until your upper arms are parallel to the ground, keeping your elbows close to your body.
  • Press through your palms to straighten your arms and return to the starting position, fully engaging your triceps.
  • Repeat for 12 reps. 

Common Mistake

Allowing the shoulders to shrug or elevate towards the ears during bench or chair dips can place unnecessary strain on the shoulder joints.   


3 FAQs About Arm Workouts

Can you build arms with just dumbbells?  

Yes, 100% you can. You need the right amount of resistance, variety, progressive overload to build arms, and dumbbells do just that. Use this dumbbell arm workout at home to start, or try this other popular workout.

Related Article: 5 Day Super Dumbbell Workout Plan PDF

Are dumbbells good for arm fat? 

Dumbbells can be good for building muscles in your arms, especially the flabby underarms that hide the triceps. 

Dumbbells do not specifically target arm fat, but do help increase your overall fat loss and tone your arms by building lean muscle. 

How long does it take to tone your arms? 

You can begin to see signs of muscle tone within 4-8 weeks of training, but that’s not all!

Toning your arms depends on a lot of factors like, training arms consistently twice a week, eating sufficient protein, losing weight if you need to, and getting good rest. 

Bottom Line 

Congratulations, warrior! You’ve conquered the 20 minute dumbbell arm workout at home.

Do this workout up to twice a week for max volume, and increase the reps or weight gradually over time for progressive overload. Never underestimate the power that 20 minutes can have on your health. 

With each rep you’re impacting your arms and becoming more dedicated to a physical and mental transformation. Stay relentless! 

Want more ways to workout? Click here, or go to the Best Chest Exercises to get back to basics!

AUTHOR

Shalom is a content creator, musician, and a teacher at heart. As a certified personal trainer, his goal is to encourage others to lead healthier lives and to get buff in the process!

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