Use this one dumbbell move to develop your core and strengthen your shoulders

Protect yourself from injury, and improve your balance and stability with this efficient exercise

A woman exercising with dumbbells
(Image credit: Getty / Johner Images)

If you're short on time or bored of your usual workout routine (more squats, push-ups and planks, anyone?) then this is the session for you.

It's a single dumbbell move, and you only need one dumbbell to do it. This is ideal when you're at a busy gym, although for home workouts, it's still worth investing in a set of the best adjustable dumbbells for flexible training, though fixed-load weights like these Amazon Basics Hex Dumbbells will do the job too.  

The exercise, demonstrated by trainer Tanya Poppet, strengthens your glutes, legs, shoulders, and core, and tests your coordination, balance and stability. It'll even help you build a body that's more resilient against injury.

If you want to turn it into a quick 10-minute workout, perform five to eight repetitions on each side of your body for four rounds, resting for 60 seconds between sets.

And if you're wondering, "What dumbbell weight should I use?", she recommends you "start light but work towards a heavier weight that challenges you." This way, you can do the move with correct form and avoid injury. 

Watch Tanya Poppett's one-move workout

"This full-body core move will challenge your strength and stability as you fight to keep your wrist, shoulders, ribs, and hips stacked," Poppett says, making it one of the top core strengthening exercises you can do with weights.

Your core muscle helps support your spine and maintain your posture, while your shoulders work to keep the weight overhead, which strengthens them for every day activities like reaching to a top shelf or popping a child on your shoulders. 

The benefits of this move aren't just physical either. Challenging yourself to learn a new exercise can stimulate your mind, banishing mid-workout boredom by making your session more fun and engaging. 

This is important, as exercising for happiness is a worthy pursuit, and you don't always have to reach a specific repetition or time goal, so long as you're enjoying the workout. 

If you're interested in exercising for your wellbeing, you might also enjoy the benefits of yoga which include lowering stress and strengthening the connection between your body and mind. 

If that sounds like something you could be interested in, why not try starting your day with our 10-minute morning yoga routine to boost your flexibility and mood?

Harry Bullmore
Fitness Writer

Harry Bullmore is a Fitness Writer for Fit&Well and its sister site Coach, covering accessible home workouts, strength training session, and yoga routines. He joined the team from Hearst, where he reviewed products for Men's Health, Women's Health, and Runner's World. He is passionate about the physical and mental benefits of exercise, and splits his time between weightlifting, CrossFit, and gymnastics, which he does to build strength, boost his wellbeing, and have fun.

Harry is a NCTJ-qualified journalist, and has written for Vice, Learning Disability Today, and The Argus, where he was a crime, politics, and sports reporter for several UK regional and national newspapers.