Are 30 LB Dumbbells Heavy?

One of the most common questions we get from our readers is “Are 30 LB dumbbells heavy?”. If that’s your case, keep reading. By the end of this guide, you should be able to decide whether a 30-pound dumbbell is a right fit for your strength-training.

Are 30 LB Dumbbells Heavy?

Whether a 30 LB dumbbell is heavy enough or not will depend on your strength and your goals. That is, if you’ve been lifting lighter weights like a 20 LB dumbbell regularly with ease, it may be time to try 30 LB dumbbells. On the other hand, if you have been lifting heavier weights, you’ll definitely find the 30 LB ones easier to lift, yet better suited for high-reps workouts.

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Man trying to lift dumbbells with each hands

If you’re starting out, you might want to play around with different weights and settle on one that is the best fit for your strength training. Alternatively, you can buy an adjustable set that comes with weight varieties for different exercises. If all you have are 30 LB dumbbells, below are some exercises you can perform for the best results.

The Best Exercises To Do With A 30 Lb Dumbbell

If you’re looking for simple exercises to do with a 30 LB dumbbell, we recommend the following for your whole body workout.

Lying Dumbbell Extension

You can train your triceps and biceps with a 30 LB dumbbell using the lying dumbbell extension.

  1. Hold the dumbbells in each hand and lie on a bench.
  2. Raise the dumbbells above your head and slightly angle them back
  3. Slowly lower the dumbbells to the level of your ears then push back to the starting position

If you don’t have a bench or just don’t want to lie down, you can also do the standing dumbbell press which has the same effect on your biceps and triceps as the lying dumbbell extension. The only difference is that you will get tired and exhausted your muscles faster with the standing dumbbell press. 

Incline Dumbbell Press

Since the 30 LB dumbbell weight is probably lower than what you are used to for chest training, you will need to do some pre-exhaustion exercises to help target the chest muscles with a 30LB dumbbell. You can start by doing some push-ups or pull-ups to do this.

Woman performing dumbbell exercises

If you’re starting out with weight-lifting, this is a great way to start working on your chest and arms. 

  1. Lie on a bench and hold the dumbbells in both hands
  2. Press the dumbbells up your chest while keeping the wrists straight
  3. Slowly lower the dumbbells back to your chest

Front L Raise

Since you have already worked on your chest, you won’t need much pre-exhaustion exercise for your shoulders. For this workout, we will use the Front L Raise exercise to exhaust the shoulder muscles. To do this:

  1. Stand with the dumbbells at your sides
  2. Lift one dumbbell up with the other going the sides to create
  3. Bring the dumbbells back to the starting position, then reverse the movement

After the Front ‘L’ raise, you can do a standing dumbbell press for more effect on your shoulders. After the previous exercise, the 30-pound dumbbells will feel pretty heavy and bring the shoulder muscles to exhaustion much faster.

Bulgarian Split Squat

The 30 LB dumbbell is also great for working your legs. There are a number of exercises you can do to focus the weight on your legs. We recommend that you first work each leg individually since the weight is much lighter.

Of the most popular leg exercises to do with the 30 LB dumbbell is the Bulgarian Split Squat. To do this:

Close up of man performing dumbbell exercises
  1. Stand a few feet from a bench with one foot on the bench
  2. Slightly bend the rear leg
  3. Hold the dumbbells in your hands and lower into a squat position.
  4. Push back to the starting position

Will 30 LB Dumbbells Build Muscle?

Yes, the 30 LB dumbbells can help you to build muscles. If you are just starting out, this will be the perfect weight to set your strength-training on the right track. While you might have to do more repetitions compared to when using heavier weights, you will still be able to build muscles if you stick to your routine. 

How Heavy Should My Dumbbells Be?

Your dumbbell weight requirements largely depend on your strength-training goals. Based on whether you are lifting to increase strength, stay physically fit, build muscles or develop endurance, the weight requirements will be different.


A 30 LB dumbbell is heavy enough and can help you build muscles and develop strength. This weight will bring different results for different people depending on your exercise goals and current training schedule.

Robert Lemus has been a natural competitor for 6 years, starting in Men’s Physique, then Bodybuilding, and then into Classic Physique. He is the Orange County Bodybuilding champion in 2016 for the Musclemania Organization. In 2018, he received his Pro Card with the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) in Classic Physique.