Obviously, traditional strength training with low volume and low sets (1-6 reps, 3 or less sets) is not the best approach. Now that you understand the principles, how should you set up a hypertrophy program? Powerlifters are known for lifting heavy things for fewer reps, stimulating muscle growth by putting a ton of tension on their muscles. Saying that the hypertrophy rep range is somewhere in the neighbourhood of 6–20 reps means that sets ranging from 6 reps to 20 reps can all be ideal for stimulating muscle growth. In both articles, the weekly volume of training (sets * reps) was equal between compared groups. Hypertrophy training is the style of training designed specifically for stimulating muscle growth. 1. While there are a number of ways to induce hypertrophy in the weight room, it seems that employing multiple sets with moderate loads (6-12 reps, 65-85% 1RM) and rest periods (60 seconds) creates the greatest elevation of testosterone and growth hormone (primary anabolic hormones); compared to heavy loads (1-5 reps, >85% 1RM) with long rest periods (2-5 minutes) and light loads (12+ reps, <65% 1RM) … The Japanese drop set training protocol was first invented and tested by a team of Japanese researchers around the turn of the 21st century. With the bigger lifts, we can stick to the lower side of that rep range so that our cardiovascular systems don’t hold us back. However, I contest that the 6-15 rep range is more inclusive and accurate. A hypertrophy phase workout consists of exercises utilizing low to intermediate repetition ranges with progressive overload. But the other half is just as important. If you focus on getting stronger at these, you’ll build an impressive physique, guaranteed. On the other hand, as we do more reps per set, we’re doing more total work, which can get quite hard on our cardiovascular systems. And we aren’t locked into doing specific lifts. For most of us, it’s better to spend most (but not all) of our time lifting in moderate rep ranges. Gary says that hypertrophy training is all about the volume of work and repetitions at a manageable, but still challenging weight. So think about training each muscle hard with around 4–8 sets per workout, starting at the lower end of that range and working your way up as needed. It’s a combination of a push-up and a squat, both of which can be good exercises for building muscle. Strength training does cause hypertrophy (Hakkinen et al, 1985), but it won't cause maximum hypertrophy. We want to build muscle in both ways, so we do both. Now, just to be totally clear, anywhere from 4–40 repetitions per set will build muscle quite well, it’s just that we tend to gain more muscle more easily when lifting in the 6–20 rep range. We’re trying to bulk up our myofibrils (myofibrillar hypertrophy) and store more fuel in our muscles (sarcoplasmic hypertrophy). In addition to hypertrophy, increased training volume produces larger amounts of fiber damage and subsequent post-exercise muscle soreness. Hypertrophy training reps. If we look at the research, though, we can get more precise. You can do sets of 5, 8 or 25 reps. Performing two to six sets increases training volume – a product of weight lifted, repetitions performed and number of sets. absolute muscular strength, endurance, hypertrophy and muscular power). His specialty is helping people build muscle to improve their strength and general health, with clients including college, professional, and Olympic athletes. Hamstring Curl. For more, we have a full article on hypertrophy training frequency. The Rep Range That Builds the Most Muscle. Instead, we’re doing front squats to maximize our depth. But physiologically, [hypertrophy training] is about the strongest bang for your buck training system you could possibly get. Bodybuilders are good at feeling the burn and getting a pump, stimulating muscle growth with metabolic stress. And the same thing goes for developing our skills. We aren’t powerlifters. Obviously, traditional strength training with low volume and low sets (1-6 reps, 3 or less sets) is not the best approach. Sarcoplasmic hypertrophy lets us lift weights for more repetitions, improving our rep maxes. For circuit C, perform the first set of the compound exercise followed immediately by one set of the isolation exercise. is it better to divide strength training volume over more days or fewer days? You can train to become stronger for your size (strength training), to develop more explosive power (Olympic weightlifting) or to build more muscle mass—hypertrophy training. It’s a small isolation lift. Specified loads are considered high-intensity, and recommended sets and reps contribute further to high volume. Appropriate Training Percentages: 40-80% 1RM; Best Set & Rep Scheme: 9 x 3; Reasoning: While speed and power can be developed with higher rep ranges, I prefer to use more sets (9) and fewer reps (3) as it facilitates proper technique on all repetitions and delays the onset of fatigue. Muscle hypertrophy means muscle growth, so hypertrophy training is the style of training designed to stimulate muscle growth. These high-rep cluster sets are fantastic because they let you perform a huge number of repetitions and overall volume of work in a short period of time. 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