It only takes nine moves to develop muscle all over with this quick workout

Pick up a pair of light dumbbells and give this quick session a go

A woman performing a side plank as part of a full-body workout at home
(Image credit: Getty)

The phrase "strength training" might make you think of muscle-bound bodybuilders flexing their biceps, but we're here to tell you that this way of working out has plenty to offer for everyone.

You may already know that lifting weights can boost your metabolism, help you build muscle and lower your body fat, but the benefits don't end there. It also has the power to decrease your risk of injury, strengthen your bones, boost your heart health and make everyday tasks feel easier—whether that's taking out the trash or grabbing food off the top shelf at the supermarket. 

If that impressive CV has you ready to sign on the dotted line, why not dip your toe in the strength training water with this accessible session from ace trainer Kayla Itsines (opens in new tab), co-founder of the popular Sweat workout app. 

You don't need a gym membership to give it a go, just a pair of dumbbells and some space to work out in. We like lifting at home with the best adjustable dumbbells as they allow us to change the load depending on the exercise, but a fixed weight pair will still do a fine job. 

Itsinses also uses a weight bench for exercises like the bench press and step-ups. But, if you don't have one, never fear. You can swap these exercises out for floor presses (where you perform a dumbbell chest press while lying flat on the ground) and lunges respectively for minimal equipment alternatives.

Watch Itsines' video below to find out more about the workout, then dust off your dumbbells and try it for yourself. 

Watch Kayla Itsines' full-body dumbbell workout

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This workout is great for anyone who is new to strength training as it combines weighted compound exercises (opens in new tab) like the bench press with bodyweight movements such as step-ups. It also keeps rest times low, like HIIT workouts for fat loss (opens in new tab) you may have tried previously, so it's sure to blitz calories. 

It's quick too, taking less than 30 minutes from start to finish. This is largely down to Itsines' use of supersets, pairing two exercises together that target two different muscles so you don't have to rest between them. 

For example, the first superset sees you take on 20 step-ups (hitting your lower-body) quickly followed by 12 repetitions of the bench press (which will work your chest, shoulders and triceps). 

This workouts' efficiency credentials are further bolstered by the fact that it works every major muscle group in your body. So, you can enjoy a full-body blast in record time instead of training different body parts on different days. 

If you're new to strength training and want to add this session into your weekly routine, we recommend using it as a standalone session for the day. It's likely you'll feel sore the next day as your muscles recover, so if you want to get moving why not try a lower-intensity activity like these anti-aging yoga moves (opens in new tab) or a session from our Pilates for beginners (opens in new tab) plan? 

Harry Bullmore

Harry Bullmore is a fitness writer covering everything from reviews to features for LiveScience, T3, TechRadar, Fit&Well and more. So, whether you’re looking for a new fitness tracker or wondering how to shave seconds off your 5K PB, chances are he’s written something to help you improve your training.

When not writing, he’s most likely to be found experimenting with a wide variety of training methods in his home gym or trying to exhaust his ever-energetic puppy.

Prior to joining Future, Harry wrote health and fitness product reviews for publications including Men’s Health, Women’s Health and Runner’s World. Before this, he spent three years as a news reporter with work in more than 70 national and regional newspapers.