Supreme 90: Shoulders & Arms

Tom Holland
Year Released: 2010

Categories: Upper Body Strength

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This workout is part of the 10-DVD Supreme 90 set developed and led by Tom Holland, and clocks in at about 45 minutes. The warm up and cool down are the same as the rest in the set. The DVD menu allows you to play the warm up and the workout, but the workout itself is not chaptered. Tom leads one woman and two men backgrounders in a darkish gym setting. The music was a little louder in this one (which I think is a good thing), and is rock type music like P90X.

Tom structures this workout with one quick core circuit at the beginning – about 15 reps each of three exercises – side to side crunches like in Firm Cardio with Heidi Tanner, long lever lifts with arms and legs, and a total body crunch (then repeat this circuit once), which was great overall toning for the core. My core was burning! Then onto the arm work, which was structured as three exercises (a shoulder, then biceps, then triceps exercise) for 8-12 reps each, then repeat each circuit three times. There were three of these total, each one lasting about 10 minutes. The shoulder exercises were a clean and press, then overhead press, a variation on a lateral shoulder raises, then finally rear delt raises. The biceps included biceps curls, then hammer curls, then 21 curls – 7 in the lower part, 7 upper, 7 full range curls, and curls while prone on the stability ball. The triceps included French press, a really tough triceps kickbacks which had 30 reps per exercise (10 with palms up, 10 with supination, 10 with palms down), triceps French press while prone on the stability ball (right after the biceps, so less shuffling around, which is great), and triceps pushups with hands close together. Between each large circuit was a quick breather, in which Tom demonstrated the next moves. Then onto a nice stretch.

Final thoughts: What a great, tough workout! Tom really keeps you moving in this one – he doesn’t rush you at all, but changing up the moves each time really engages you and makes the workout fly by. This can be made easier or harder depending on your choice of poundage, but Tom really encourages you to go heavy to get the maximum benefit out of it. His rule of thumb is that the last rep should be pretty hard, but you should still be able to maintain good form. He recommended that if you are fatigued, you might do 12 reps, then 10, then 8 in the last set of the circuit, which I thought was a great idea, and enabled me to keep up with heavier bells. I was surprised at how much I could use my 15# bells, I also used 12#, 10#, 8#, 6#, and 5# bells for the various work. I am hoping to go even heavier as the S90 rotation continues. If you go moderate-heavy, like Tom recommends, you can make this into an advanced workout. It would be fine for intermediates too (might be a little overwhelming for beginners). To make this a standalone upper body workout, you would need to include chest and back exercises, or supplement this with the Chest & Back workout (if you’re not following a rotation). So for that reason, this DVD is probably not the best as a standalone, but it works great in the S90 rotation. Highly effective and I like all the variations on the exercises. Overall grade A+.

Instructor Comments:
Having used several of the S90 workouts, I have really grown fond of Tom as an instructor. Tom was organized in this one, and not as rushed as in some of the other S90 workouts. He gives good form pointers, and the backgrounders all have great form. The woman was an inspiration and used really heavy weights! He really commended her and told us viewers that women really need to go heavy too, not just the men. (The men were inspirational too!) I’m really pleased with Tom, his attitude towards women and heavy weights, his style of instruction, and his workout design. Very pleased.

Emily B.


Tom leads this 45 min w/o in a lifting gym type set w/ 3 b/g exercisers. You will need a stability ball & dumbbells for this w/o though 1 mod shows no ball options. The dvd is chaptered into warmup and workout (the warmup is the same for all the discs in this series). Tom acts as a PT and helps the exercisers w/ form

The bulk of this dvd is shoulders & arms but Tom starts w/ a nice core circuit to get you going- which I like! The workout is structured that you do 3 moves & repeat that circuit 3 times. Tom shows the 3 moves before you begin the circuit so you know whats coming up.

Exercises include: penguin heel taps, V ups, V crunches, clean (from floor) to press, curl, french press, overhead press, hammer curls, tri kickback variations, curl to lat raise, incline ball curls, ball tricep extensions, rear delt fly, 21's (curl variations), & tri pushups. The moves are unique but not so much that they are strange. Tom keeps your muscles guessing by adding in variations of traditions exercises.

I would rate this an advanced workout but is suitable for most fitness levels by adjusting poundage and going at your own pace. Tom states 8-12 reps and you do what you can do in the alloted time. I like Tom, I like that each exerciser goes at his/her own pace and I do the same. Great cuing, great form, great pointers, great pace. Really enjoying this set! I received this set to review.