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BodyPump Inspired Barbell Workout

  • November 11, 2015
  • By Brittany
BodyPump Inspired Barbell Workout

This BodyPump Inspired Barbell Workout is sure to push your limits, increase your strength and burn major calories. Don’t be afraid of heavy weights!

You may find it surprising that with all my talk of barre and pilates that I would do anything besides high reps and light weights, but in fact, one of my all time favorite workouts is Les Mills BODYPUMP.  I took my first class about 10 years ago and have been hooked ever since.  Over the summer I taught a barbell class that was similar in format to BODYPUMP and while, it was not the same class, I definitely drew a lot of inspiration from the Les Mills class.  

Since I love the workout so much, I thought you guys would enjoy it as well.  This at-home workout is simple to follow but a tough challenge for sure.  

Equipment: For this workout you will need a barbell set.  In a typical BODYPUMP class you would use a bar plus a weight set.  A typical weight set includes: 2 x 10 lb (5kg) weight plates, 2 x 5.5 (2.5 kg) weight plates and 2 x 2.2 (1kg) weight plates.  You can purchase a set similar to mine here.  If you don’t want to use a barbell, you can do this workout with dumbbells in approximately the same weight, but please note that there are no demonstrations of the moves with dumbbells. 

Workout:  Perform this workout by focusing on one body part at a time.  Complete the sequence of moves as many times as possible during the length of the song designated for each move (see playlist below).  The workout is based on varying beats.  For example, a super slow squat will go down for 4 counts and then up for 4 counts and you might do this 2x. You may then do the same squat but this time down for 2 counts and up for 2 counts performed 4x and then single count squats for 8x.  Or you may perform a deadlift that dips forward and down for 3 counts and then up for 1 and you may do this 2x followed by a deadlift down for 2 and up for 2 4x.  Try to match the beats of the music as you perform the moves. 

For each body part you will have one designated song, one workout sheet listing the move patterns and photos demonstrating the various moves.  Check the weight requirements for each segment and then have some fun!

bodypump set position

Start every move in set position with hands on the bar a thumbs distance away from your legs, elbows slightly bent, shoulders rolled up back and then down and core on.

Warm up

The warm up combines a number of moves that are used throughout the entire workout. Start with a light weight on your bar.  I typically use 5.5 lbs on each side (2.5 kg).  The weight should not feel heavy and you should be able to perform all of the reps for the entire song without fatiguing.  Start slow and stay in a short range of motion.

BodyPump Warm Up

BodyPump Inspired Workout Warm Up


Squats work the legs and glutes, our biggest muscle groups so this is usually the heaviest weight of the workout.  I try to lift between 15-17lbs using all of my plates!  If you are new, start small by just doubling your warm up weight.  More advanced, add some on.  Make sure the bar is set on the meaty part of your back and not your neck.  Keep the abs in and the chest lifted as you squat and stick the booty out behind.  

On the second set, take the feet wide and perform the choreography with wide squats.

Bodypump squats

Side View

bodypump squats 4

Bottom Halves (all the way down and half way up–repeat)

BodyPump Botom Half Squats

Wide squats

Bodypump Wide Leg Squats

BodyPump Inspired Workout Squats


For the chest track you should lighten up on your weight selection.  I usually opt for 10lbs on each side.  If you are just starting out, you might try 5lbs or 7lbs and if you are more advanced you can try 12lbs.

Remember to keep your hands wide on the bar.  Your wrists should remain straight and lower the bar just to your chest (middle of the ribcage).  Pushups can be done on your knees or your toes.

Chest Press

BodyPump Chest Presses


bodypump pushup

BodyPump Inspired Workout Chest


For this track you can lift the same weight as the back track or you can add on a bit more. 

When performing the deadlift and deadrow, tip forward from the hips keeping the back flat and abs pulled in.  For the clean and press, keep your knees bent as you bring the weight up to your shoulders, extend up overhead and then bend the knees as the bar comes back to shoulders, flip the palms and lower the weight down.  Never swing the bar away from your body but keep it close.


BodyPump Deadlift Collage

Side View

BodyPump Deadlift Collage Side View


bodypump deadrow

Clean and Press

BodyPump Clean and Press Demo Collage

BodyPump Inspired Workout Back


Biceps are a smaller muscle group so you can drop your weights down.  Warm up weight is a good selection.  I like to go with 5lbs on each side and then sometimes challenge myself with 7lbs on each side.

Keep the elbows in close to sides with palms facing out.  For the row, keep the palms facing out and then tip at the hips like we did in the back track.

Bodypump Bicep Curl Collage

Bicep Row

Bodypump Bicep Row

BodyPump Inspired Workout Biceps


Triceps are another smaller muscle group and it is a good idea to use the same weights as the biceps.  For this track, the tricep press is similar to the chest press except your hands are in narrow over the shoulders and when you lower the weight you keep your elbows by your side dropping the weight just below the ribs.

The tricep dip starts over the shoulders and you lower your weight just to the forward.  The tricep pull is a combination of the press and the dip, taking the weight from the dip position and pulling it to the lower part of the press position and then returning back to the dip position and repeating.

Tricep Press

BodyPump Tricep Press Collage

Tricep Dips

BodyPump Tricep Dips Collage

Tricep Pull

Bodypump Tricep Pull Collage

BodyPump Inspired Workout Triceps


For the lunges we are moving back into the legs, our big muscle groups.  Add some weight back onto the bar.  Try for 10 lbs to 12 lbs on either side or, if you are new, go a little bit lower with 7lbs.

For the lunge, step one foot back and bend both knees.  Your knees should create 90 degree angles.  The back heel should remain lifted and the front knee should never go past the front toe, if it does, you need to step your front foot out a bit.

For the bottom halves, go halfway up and then all the way down, keeping a small range of motion.

Bodypump Lunge Collage

Lunge Bottom Halves

BodyPump Bottom Half Lunges

BodyPump Inspired Workout Lunges


Moving from the lower body to the upper body, we lighten our weights again here.  A good weight is your warm up weight although feel free to go a bit heavier if you can maintain good form.

For the overhead press, make sure the bar stays in front of the body, not behind. For the side raise, you will need two plates.  Lift to the side and then lower.  Then add on part 1 of the pec deck–lift to the side, turn the palms to face front, lower the palms back down and then lower the arms.  Then add on part 2–lift to the side, turn the palms to face front, push the weights overhead, lower, lower the palms, lower the arms.

The Mac Raise requires you to lift both arms at once with one elbow bent and the other extended straight.

Overhead Press

BodyPump Overhead Press Collage

Side Raise

BodyPump Side Raise Collage

Pec Deck Part 1

bodypump pec deck 1

Pec Deck Part 2

bodypump pec dec 4

Mac Raise

Bodypump Mac Raise collage

BodyPump Inspired Workout Shoulders


Finally we’ve made it to lie down on the mat!  You’ll need one plate for this track but the weight is optional and you can do the entire sequence without weight.

Keep the spine neutral, no arch through the back and keep the shoulders down as you lift and lower your upper body and then add in the legs.

Basic Crunch

bodypump crunch 1

Double Crunch

BodyPump Crunch Collage

Criss Cross

BodyPump CrissCross Collage

Double Leg Stretch

BodyPump Double Leg Stretch Collage

BodyPump Inspired Workout Core

Use this heart pumping playlist to power you through your workout.  Remember, complete each sequence for the duration of the song.  If you finish the entire sequence before the song is over, go back and start at the beginning!

BodyPump Inspired Playlist

Readers, are you a fan of BodyPump?  What’s your favorite body part to train?  

By Brittany, November 11, 2015
  • 3
  • Nicole @ Foodie Loves Fitness
    November 11, 2015

    Nice! I’m with you, sometimes it feels awesome to just lift some heavy weights! My favorite is to work small muscles like biceps while incorporating larger muscles – so I’m always doing lunges, squats, etc. in conjunction with strength moves.

  • Holly
    November 12, 2015

    Wow–you do every kind of workout known to women! We see what a mighty dancer can do! That is one complete and thorough Body Pump inspired barbell routine! Good Work–you definitely have balance. As to your question–I could only be a body pump fan if you were instructing–inspiring for us petite gals!

  • Kendal
    January 20, 2021

    I love this – thank you! Do you have more of these types of workouts? I miss going to BodyPump at the gym šŸ™

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