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30-10-30 Exercise Substitutions?

I have torn labrums in both shoulders and haven’t been able to barbell bench or overhead press in years. I use heavy weights on dumbbells with no problem; I just can’t get locked into one plane of motion. Can I sub out those exercises for dumbbells? What about using a chest-supported row like Hammer Strength instead of the barbell bent-over row?

Also, is it ok to do additional yoga or flexibility work on rest/posing days?

Yes, you can substitute the Hammer Row, or other Hammer machines.

I would not add yoga or flexibility movements on the in-between days.

Dr Darden,

Your new book is awesome and groundbreaking. Of the 6 exercises, many are with barbell, but is it ok to substitute with 2 dumbbells

Thank you

Yes, you can substitute dumbbells for barbell exercises.

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With gym being closed because of COVID, I can only train in my home gym where I do not have access to leg extension, leg curl, and leg press machines.

What would be a barbell or dumbbell substitution for those? Replacing the leg press with a dumbbell or barbell squat goes without saying, but what about to other two? More importantly, what about the days where all three exercices are to be performed? It would feel kind of against the point, and straight-up dangerous, to do 3 sets of 30-10-30 barbell squats, no?


You could apply dumbbell squats, barbell squats, dumbbell sissy squats, and barbell sissy squats. Some of the guys on the forum can probably help you with various hamstring movements.

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Do you have any objection to substituting preacher curls for standing barbell curl? I am doing so in order to avoid having to strip the weights from the barbell after bench press so I can move quicker between exercises.

Okay. But let me know how the preacher curl feels during the 30-10-30 method? I have not used it before.

I did it yesterday. I felt it went well. I felt the weight throughout the motion. No concerns on my end. I thought you may like the preacher curl because it seems similar to the Generation 2 Nautilus Biceps curl. Do you have any reservations about the preacher curl in general?

If it worked well for you, keep using it. Thanks.

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I’m going to have a couple of tests this week, one on my shoulder and one on a stationary bike. I’m going for a 12 rep week, and am looking for your thoughts on how it should be done.

I like doing single arm dumbbell concentration curls in 30-10-30 style…I think they’re really effective if you rotate the wrist through the rep motion…specifically the dumbbell in bottom start position it’s in hammer thumb forward position but as weight curls up you rotate the wrist until top contraction your little pinky finger will be higher than thumb then squeeze…I actually see a better bicep peak on myself