The humble dumbbell has gone viral. Just as your home is now your office, in lockdown your home must also be your gym (just mind you don’t step on the cat). Dumbbells have been flying off the (virtual) shelves this week: online retailers including Amazon have reported a spike in demand for at-home fitness equipment. 

Dumbbells are a good place to start: hard-working pieces of micro kit that you can incorporate into exercises that work the core, upper and lower body (hard). Plus, unlike a pull up bar or a bench press, it’s easy to improvise: if you can’t get hold of a set, stockpiled tins do (really) make passable makeshift weights. 

If you need some guidance as to how to wield them, the first place to try is Fiit, which has a megalithic library of HIIT, bodyweight, strength and yoga workouts, including (currently) 44 separate dumbbell routines. You’ll feel the burn on Dumbbell Shred #10, led by the ebullient pairing of trainers Alex and Gabby (my arms were gasping for salvation by the third round of renegade rows). The app also announced yesterday that it was extending free premium membership to all NHS staff. 

Meanwhile, Adidas Training by Runtastic has short, sharp dumbbell circuits you can do in your bedroom (runtastic.com). 

On Instagram, many of London’s top PTs are WFH , showing you how to get those gains in speedy tutorials. Kobox trainer @mariabinns is improvising routines using tinned tomatoes on IGTV: practise those straight punches and uppercuts with a bit of extra weight. And Barry’s Bootcamp super trainer @anyalahiri, celebrated as a minor deity in Lycra by London’s fitterati, is also doing daily 8.20am sessions (available to view on Barry’s Instagram Story all day).  

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