The Dumbbell skier swing is a great alternative to the kettlebell swing. Just like the KB swing, the DB swing is a hinging move and can be used as a conditioning exercise or a power exercise, depending on your fitness goals. It will get the heart rate fired up, especially if used as a finisher. And it will work on improving power and strength in the hamstrings and glutes, making it a perfect accessory exercise to use for improving your deadlift.

How to set up:

  1. Stand tall with your feet hip-width apart holding a pair of dumbbells at your sides, palms facing each other.
  2. Keeping your arms straight and core engaged, push your hips back and allow your arms to swing directly backward. This is the starting position.
  3. Drive through your heels, thrust your hips forward, and squeeze your glutes to return to standing, swinging the weights to shoulder height. Your arms should do minimal work here; the momentum from your hips should power the dumbbells.
  4. Reverse the move using a controlled swing backward to return to the starting position, and move immediately into the next rep.

Common Mistakes to avoid:

  • Squatting instead of hinging. Think that you want to push your gutes and hips back, and NOT bend the knees 90 degrees (only slight bend) and let you bum drop down towards the floor. Your chest should almost be parallel to the floor as the DB’s swing back. And you should feel your weight shift to your hamstrings and glutes.
  • Don’t lift the weights with your shoulders or arms. Your momentum and power coming from the hips should drive the DB’s up.
  • When you reach the top of the swing, don’t lean back or arch the lower back. If you feel any tension in your lower back ask a coach to watch your form.
  • Don’t let your shoulders roll up towards your ears. During your set up, set your shoulder blades back and down. Or think about tucking them into your back pocket.