9 Dumbbell Ab Workouts That'll Help You Build a Seriously Strong Core

POPSUGAR Photography | Matthew Kelly
POPSUGAR Photography | Matthew Kelly

In case you didn't already know, adding weights to your workouts is a sure-fire way to up the intensity and reach all kinds of goals, whether you're trying to get stronger, lose weight, or even boost your metabolism. When it comes to ab workouts, throwing some weight into the mix can help you build and strengthen the key muscles of your core, which helps with the aesthetic aspect, but can also protect you from injury and make day-to-day life and movement a little easier.

When you're working with weights, it's best to go in with a plan; if you don't know what you're doing, it's easy to get hurt. Luckily, we've pulled a few of our favorite weighted ab workouts from YouTube, all created by certified trainers, to lead the way and show you how to work your abs with weights in a safe and effective way. These routines are fast, fun, and they'll definitely light up your core to get you feeling it the next day! Grab your dumbbells (make sure to choose the right weight!) and let's get started.

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10-Minute Ab and Oblique Sculpter by Blogilates

All you need is one dumbbell for this quick abs and oblique routine from Blogilates founder Cassey Ho. All the moves are done on the floor, from side elbow planks with twists to one-arm roll-ups, so grab your comfiest mat, too!

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20-Minute Flat-Belly and Toned-Arms Workout by Class FitSugar

It doesn't get better than a two-for-one workout, which is why this 20-minute class offers moves for both your upper body and your abs. Led by Class FitSugar host Anna Renderer, you'll sweat through moves like a low-to-high wood chop and a plank with row to strengthen your core and arms.

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Dumbbell Abs Workout by MrandMrsMuscle

This 10-minute workout goes fast and is challenging as heck. You'll do each move for 30 seconds with very little rest in between (pause if you need a breather!), but the upbeat playlist will keep you moving. Pay attention to the onscreen diagrams to see which muscles you're targeting with each move.

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Standing Abs Workout With Weights by Heather Robertson

No mat or comfy floor to be found? This small-space, standing-only ab workout is the one for you. It's just over eight minutes long and low-impact, but intense with knee drivers, weighted side bends, and core twisters that work your core from side to side.

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Abs With Dumbbells Workout by Fitness by Vivi

This simple seven-minute workout from trainer Viviana Castro switches between plank moves and exercises done on your back to work your core from different positions. Starting with Russian twists, you'll move into a fusion move of plank to downward dog (core work plus stretching is always a good combo), dumbbell leg raises, and single-leg planks — and that's only the first half. Get ready to feel the burn.

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Glutes and Abs With Weights Workout by Rebecca Louise

Want to work your butt and abs in one workout? Try out this 10-minute routine from trainer Rebecca Louise. After a few rounds of deadlifts (hellooo, glutes), you'll move into ab roll-ups, glute bridges, and straight-leg crunches. Keep your core engaged even during the glute moves to preserve your form and get the most bang for your buck.

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15-Minute Core Workout With a Dumbbell by Nicole Pearce

Queue up your workout playlist and tune in for this one-dumbbell core circuit with personal trainer Nicole Pearce, NASM. The weight adds serious intensity to moves like full-body crunches and side plank dips, so remember to modify if you feel your form being compromised; for the double leg lifts especially, make sure your lower back is pressed against the floor.

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10-Minute Abs Workout With a Dumbbell by Sydney Cummings

NASM-certified personal trainer Sydney Cummings leads this HIIT-style workout, which features five single-dumbbell moves. You do 45 seconds of each exercise, each one followed by a 15-second rest, repeated for two full rounds for maximum work.

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Weighted Abs 6-Pack Workout by Heather Robertson

If you're short on time, hit play on this fast five-minute ab workout from Heather Robertson. With one dumbbell in hand, get ready for tough moves like weighted straight-leg crunches, Russian twists, and reverse crunches. Stay focused and work through as many reps as you can to get the most out of this quick workout.