Texans upper body weight workouts

Players Kris Brown, Steve McKinney, Chad Stanley, Sloan Thomas, Glenn Earl, and strength coaches Ray Wright, Everett Coleman, and Virgil Campbell, demonstrated our 10-8 routines.

We receive many requests for a program or a workout. There is nothing magical or special about our routines. Remember, there are no magical routines or exercise sequence. The key to maximum strength gains is how each rep is executed and the intensity of each set. Your genetic potential will ultimately determine how favorably you respond to properly performed strength training.


Our players have 12 upper body workouts to choose from. To create variety for our players we utilize a variety of equipment. Some routines feature a barbell (Barbell 3 x 6), a dumbbell (Dumbbell 10 – 8 or Dumbbell Elevator), a combination of equipment (Free Weight Combo Platter), a Smith Machine (Smith Machine 10 – 8, Smith Machine Elevator, Smith Machine Half Reps), or a variety of machines (Hammer Isolateral, Hammer MTS, Nautilus Nitro, Nautilus Xpload, Avenger).

Ten of the twelve routines incorporate both multi-joint and single joint exercises. One routine features only single-joint exercises (No Hands Routine) and one routine contains only multi-joint exercises (Push-Pull Routine).

There are three major muscle groups composing the upper body. The three major areas of the upper body include the following:

  1. Chest  (bench press, incline press, pec flyes)
  2. Upper back (lat pull-down, seated row, chin-ups)
  3. Shoulders (seated press, lateral raise, front raise, rear delt, rotator cuff external rotation)

If there is an area of priority for a football player it must be the shoulders. There are four major compartments composing the deltoids. The four areas of the deltoid include the following:

  1. Anterior head (frontal deltoid)
  2. Medial head (middle deltoid)
  3. Posterior deltoid (rear deltoid)
  4. Rotator cuff (four muscles that rotate the shoulder internally and externally)

If injury prevention is a priority an isolation exercise must be performed for each area of the deltoid. These exercises are a must for a football player.

  1. Anterior head-front raise
  2. Medial head-lateral raise
  3. Posterior head-bent-over-raise
  4. Rotator cuff-external rotation

Before executing the first exercise in a workout we ask our players to perform several warm-up sets. After the warm-up our goal is to select a weight that barely allows the player to complete the designated number of reps.


Our players perform somewhere between eight and twelve repetitions. For maximum gains our players use as much weight as they can properly handle for each set without sacrificing good form (observe Texans Rep Rules).

We ask our players to perform each rep strictly adhering to our Texans four Rep Rules:

Rule # 1– Raise and lower the weight through the muscles full range of motion.

Rule # 2 –Eliminate momentum during the raising phase of each exercise.

Rule # 3 - Pause momentarily (stop for a count of 1001) in the muscle's contracted position with a smooth transition from the raising of the weight to the lowering of the weight (no sudden drop).

Rule # 4 –Emphasize the lowering of the weight (take longer to lower the weight).* *

Our players currently have twelve upper body routines to choose from. Six of those upper body routines are listed on the player's computer workout menu as "10 – 8 Routines." Our 10 – 8 Routines include the following workouts:

Our players also have six additional upper body routines in their computer file. They include the following:

1.    Barbell 3 x 6
2. Dumbbell Elevator
3. Smith Machine Elevator
4. Free Weight Combo Platter
5. Push – Pull
6. No Hands

During our 10-8 routines our player's perform two sets (10 reps & 8 reps) of the following exercises:

Bench press

Incline press

Seated press

The remainder of the exercises composing the 10 – 8 Routines include the following exercises. Only one all out set (10 – 12 reps) is performed for each of the exercises listed below:


Lat pull-down

Rear delt

Seated Row

Rotator cuff external rotation

Lateral raise

The exercise sequence for our 10 – 8 Routines is the same for each of the six 10 – 8 workouts listed above. The only difference in each of the 10 - 8 routines is the equipment used to perform the same exercises. To create variety we substitute different pieces of equipment.

10 – 8 Routine Exercise Sequence

  1. Bench press – 10 reps

Rest 90-seconds

  1. Bench press – 8 reps

Rest 90 seconds

  1. Pullover – 10 – 12 reps (pre-exhaust lats)
  2. Lat pull-down 10 – 12 reps (performed immediately after Pullovers)

Rest 90 seconds

  1. Dumbbell incline press – 10 reps

Rest 90 seconds

  1. Dumbbell incline press – 8 reps

Rest 90 seconds

  1. Rear Delt – 12 reps (pre-exhaust rear delt & upper back)
  2. Seated row 10 – 12 reps (performed immediately after rear delt)

Rest 90 seconds

* 9. Rotator cuff external rotation*

Rest 90 seconds

  1. Lateral raise – 12 reps (pre-exhaust deltoids)

Rest 90 seconds

  1. Seated press – 10 reps

Rest 90 seconds

  1. Seated press – 8 reps

Total number of reps = 126

Total workout time = 24 minutes

Total time spent exercising (average of five seconds/rep) = 10 minutes 30 seconds

Total time spent resting between exercises: 13 minutes 30 seconds

As soon as a player can complete ten good reps we increase the weight for his next workout. We use the same protocol for the second set (of eight reps). When eight good reps can be completed we increase the weight for his next workout. Our goal is to add weight on one, or both sets whenever possible.

A maximum effort on the first set will require a decrease in weight on the second set (if a near maximum effort is exerted on the first set and if no more than 90 seconds rest is taken between sets).

Our players perform two sets of the bench press, incline press, and seated press. They only perform one set of the remaining exercises in that routine.

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