Dumbbell Clean And Press Benefits: Muscle Mass, Strength And Full Body Conditioning

Dumbbell Clean and Press

Here’s another challenge for you… a power movement using dumbbells (Yes, it’s different but it’s awesome for making progress).

The dumbbell clean and press is a total body movement which increases explosiveness, strength and muscle mass while conditioning the body, all at the same time. It’s a powerhouse of a movement and if you’re not doing them (Or something similar) you’re missing out!

The unilateral nature of the dumbbell clean and press is a big benefit over using barbells which only allows for bilateral movement. This allows for a more full range of motion and more stabilizer muscle engagement during the lift.

We’re going to go in depth on the movement and explain how anyone can implement it for improved performance.

So let’s first discuss the muscles worked during the dumbbell clean and press…

Which Muscles Are Worked?

The short answereverything except for chest!

The dumbbell clean and press works nearly all muscles which makes it such a great choice for metabolic conditioning. Each individual muscle group is targeted during either the clean, the press, or both.

Here are the muscles worked during the movement:

  • Legs (Quads, Hamstrings, and Calves) – During the Clean
  • Back (Spinal Erectors, lats, and traps) – During the Clean
  • Shoulders – During the press
  • Arms (Triceps and biceps) – During both the Clean and Press
  • Core – During both the Clean and Press

Now that you know which muscles are worked during the dumbbell clean and press, we’ll move on to how you can benefit from the movement!

Benefits of the Dumbbell Clean and Press

“The Biggest Exercise in Bodybuilding”

Just like any other power movement which utilizes the entire body, the dumbbell clean and press is a powerhouse. The benefits are wide-ranging and far beyond just size and strength.

Here are some amazing benefits of the Dumbbell Clean and Press:

Metabolic Conditioning

Being a full body movement and all… the dumbbell clean and press is a total metabolic beast. Every muscle in your body has a job to do to get the weight up off the ground and into the air above your head (Clean and press). Metabolic conditioning happens when energy is required by the body to perform essentially any type of activity. (1)

Simply resting less in between sets, picking up the intensity or adding additional resistance will, in fact, create an increased metabolic challenge, which is the goal. (1)

Muscular Hypertrophy and Strength Gains

Who doesn’t want bigger muscles and increased strength? The dumbbell clean and press is not just any movement. A lifter performs such a movement is usually looking to move up in weight and progress in performance. Otherwise, it’d be pointless to even do the dumbbell clean and press.

This is a full body movement which will undoubtedly improve your fitness levels, muscle size, and strength.

Muscular Hypertrophy

Read also: Train for Hypertrophy if you want optimal muscle growth and strength gains!

Great Alternative to Barbells for Range of Motion and Stabilization

Dumbbells are an amazing alternative to barbells (Yes “alternative” is right) because you can move more naturally through your range of movement and you also develop your stabilizer muscles. Unfortunately, there’s a wide belief that barbells are just overall better for essentially everything.

However, this is false!

Dumbbell exercises, in general, require a mix of balance and stability in order to position the weights and contract the muscles during a repetition. The use of dumbbells is also great for improving your barbell movements because of these factors (Improved balance and stability). Also, The unilateral movement of the dumbbell clean and press is fantastic for developing core strength (Especially when doing one arm at a time).

Performing the Dumbbell Clean and Press

You can perform the dumbbell clean and press with either one or both arms but before performing the movement, you need to make sure you have proper form. Being a full-body movement, the potential for injury increases, so never attempt any form of lifting without proper knowledge beforehand.

Here’s a video to walk you through the process of safely and effectively performing the dumbbell clean and press:

Final Thoughts

The dumbbell clean and press is a fantastic movement which builds mass and strength effectively while conditioning the entire body. The benefits are very much worth incorporating them into your workout routine and the great thing is… you can skip the barbells.

The dumbbell clean and press gets big thumbs up!


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