Exercise of the Week: Dumbbell Shoulder Dropset Circuit

December 1, 2010

For athletes in any contact sport, strong and large shoulders are essential for dishing out and absorbing contact. Thomas Jones, Kansas City Chiefs RB, embraces this philosophy by making sure his shoulders support his powerful running game. It's quite apparent that he works his entire shoulder complex; check out the size of his shoulders in the above video.

The shoulder relies on delt, rotator cuff and trap muscles for support and protection. By building and strengthening these muscles, you ensure they can cope with force applied on the shoulder, while protecting ligaments and other connective tissue from common injuries, like separations or tears.

Jones uses DB Shrugs to strengthen his traps and Side and Front Raises to work his delts, rotator cuff and additional stabilizer muscles. He adds a dropset of the DB Side and Front Raises to further fatigue the muscles, resulting in increased size gains.

For more information on how to perform the Dropset Circuit, view the video with Thomas Jones above.

DB Shrugs

  • Stand holding dumbbells at sides
  • Keeping arms straight, shrug shoulders toward ears; pause
  • Lower to start position; repeat for specified reps

Sets/Reps: 3x10

DB Side/Front Raise

  • Assume athletic stance with dumbbells at sides
  • Without rocking or changing position, raise dumbbell in right arm out to side until arm is parallel to ground and palm is facing floor
  • Lower dumbbell with control; repeat for specified reps
  • Perform set with left arm
  • With a neutral grip, raise dumbbell in right arm in front until arm is parallel to ground
  • Lower dumbbell with control; repeat for specified reps
  • Perform set with left arm

Sets/Reps: 3x12 each arm, each exercise

Andy Haley
- Andy Haley is the Performance Director at STACK. A certified strength and conditioning specialist (CSCS), he received his bachelor’s degree in exercise science from Miami...
Andy Haley
- Andy Haley is the Performance Director at STACK. A certified strength and conditioning specialist (CSCS), he received his bachelor’s degree in exercise science from Miami...

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