Supersets are the most effective method for muscle building there is. They are also an incredible way to save time. So how do you implement them? And how can I help you make the most of your supersets?
Supersets is a revolutionary program design that allows you to face your workouts with the hope of more muscle mass and more fat loss. Supersets is a revolutionary program design that allows you to face your workouts with the hope of more muscle mass and more fat loss. The superset is a training concept that has been used for generations. However, many people have never really understood the reasons behind these effective training systems.
Supersets, otherwise known as Interval Training, is not really a new exercise modality, but it is a concept that has been around for a while (a few years at least). For those of you that have never heard of it, Supersets are two exercises performed back to back in a short period of time. This is a great way to get in a lot of work without making you feel like you are failing.
Super sets are one of the most popular training methods in the world of bodybuilding. They were made popular by legendary bodybuilder Arnold Schwarzenegger in the 1970s and are still used by weightlifters around the world. Supersets are a training method where you perform 2 different exercises in a row with 0-10 seconds of rest between each exercise. Supersets are very effective for building muscle because they increase the density of the workout and force the muscles to do more work in less time. There are two different types of superordinate clauses:
- Super sets for the same muscle group
- Supersets for opposite muscle groups
These 2 types of supersets are completely different and help build muscle mass through different muscle growth mechanisms. Supersets for the same muscle group, also called agonist supersets, are techniques where you perform 2 exercises in a row for the same muscle group. Here are some examples of supersets for the same muscle group for different parts of the body:
- Quad: back squat –> leg extension
- Chest: oblique bench press –> flat bench press with dumbbells
- Shoulders: seated dumbbell press –> lateral dumbbell lift
- Reverse: Wide-grip pull-ups –> narrow-grip pull-ups
- Biceps: Stretching the slope with dumbbells –> Domino stretching
- Triceps: Bench press with closed handles –> Triceps flexion
- Quad: back squat –> leg extension
- Hamstrings: Leg stretch –> Romanian leg lift
For each of these agonistic supersets, perform the first exercise, rest for up to 10 seconds, and then perform the second exercise. Agonistic supersets are very effective at building muscle because they extend the tension time in the set and make the muscles work twice as long as normal. While you need 20 seconds for a normal set with stretched legs, you need 40 seconds to perform two different exercises together in superset. This extra time under tension increases muscle damage and metabolic stress, the two main triggers for muscle hypertrophy. Supersets for opposing muscle groups, also known as antagonistic supersets, are completely different: Instead of doing two exercises in a row for the same muscle group, alternate sets for two opposite muscle groups. For example, you can do supersets with chest and back antagonists. You can do a chest set, rest 1-2 minutes, do a back set, rest 1-2 minutes, and do another chest set. Eight-time Olympic gold medalist Arnold Schwarzenegger was a big fan of antagonistic supersets and used them constantly in his workouts to build muscle. He alternated sets for chest and back or biceps and triceps. Antagonistic supersets are also great for building muscle, but they work for very different reasons than agonistic supersets or supersets for a single muscle group. Antagonistic supersets work for three main reasons:
- You learn your muscles to generate more power
- They improve muscle endurance
- They allow you to do twice as much work in the same time.
Of course, Arnold didn’t have to read any peer-reviewed studies before he started using super antagonist sets in his workouts. He immediately realized they were effective for muscle building and used them in almost all of his workouts! In this comprehensive guide, I’ll tell you everything you need to know about how to use supersets to build muscle mass and strength. Because there are two different types of supersets, I’ve split this guide into two parts:
- Part 1: Super series for the same muscles
- Part 2: Opposite muscle supersets
In this guide, I’ll explain why these two types of supersets work so well and how you can use them to set up training programs so you can reach your training goals in record time. Trust me, you don’t want to miss this news! Message: If you’re having trouble reading the programs presented here, check out this article on how to read an exercise program. Let’s get to work… Part 1: Supersets for the same muscle group Agonistic supersets, or supersets for the same muscle group, are a high-intensity strength training technique that develops hypertrophy by training the muscles to failure. Agonistic supersets double the time under tension in your set, causing more muscle damage and metabolic fatigue than simple sets ever could! Here is an excellent demonstration of a single muscle group superset by John Meadows: John does a superset with two different types of triceps exercises:
- Standing triceps push-ups
- Stretching the triceps overhead
John performs these two exercises in succession with no break between sets. After the first exercise, John’s muscles were very tired, but the second exercise takes his triceps fatigue to a whole new level! There are many different ways to do supersets for the same muscle group. Here are some of the best strategies:
- Super series to exhaustion
- Super sets after exhaustion
- Super sets with mechanical advantage
- Super heavy-light sets
- Triple Threat Supersets
Let’s take a closer look at each of these strategies. Strategy #1: Supersets while supplies last Supersets before exhaustion are one of the oldest and most effective superset strategies. Supersets to failure is a training method where you perform two consecutive exercises for the same muscle group: an isolation exercise and a compound exercise. Isolation exercises isolate and load the muscle group, while compound exercises overload the muscle with much heavier weights. Pre-workout supersets are one of the most effective training methods for training weak muscle groups. Many of the world’s best bodybuilders, such as Arnold Schwarzenegger, have used pre-workout supersets to train their weaker body parts. Arnold always did supersets for his quads before training to help them keep up with his huge upper body. Arnold did a series of leg extensions, rested for 10 seconds, and then did a series of weighted squats. Arnold did this to shock his muscles and make his quads work much more than normal while squatting. This is one of Arnold’s favorite pre-workout routines for the quads. Look at this: Arnold Schwarzenegger’s quadriceps training for theexam
- A1 : Squat, 5 x 6-10, 2/0/1/0, rest 10 seconds
- A2: back squat, 5 x 6-10, 2/0/X/1, 3-5 minutes rest
- B1 : Squat, 5 x 6-10, 2/0/X/0, 2 minutes rest
Here are the training videos: Exercise A1, exercise A2, exercise B1. Arnold did this workout 2-3 times a week when he really wanted to correct his lagging quads. Many other bodybuilders, including Dorian Yates and Stan Efferding, have also used leg extensions as an introductory quadriceps exercise before moving on to more complex exercises. Of course, pre-workout supersets can also be used for the upper body. Here’s a great pre-workout set for your triceps, designed by John Meadows. Look at this: John Meadows Triceps Preliminary exercise
- A1 : Standing tricep push-ups (jaw grips), 4 x 12, 1/0/X/0, 90 seconds rest.
- B1 : Triceps curl (dumbbell/pinch grip), 4 x 6, 1/0/1/0, no rest
- B2 : Bench press (football dumbbells/grip), 4 x 6, 1/0/1/0, rest 90 seconds
- C1 : Head triceps curl (dumbbells)**, 4 x 8, 1/0/1/0, no rest
**Perform a static stretch in the bottom position of the exercise for 10 seconds immediately after the last repetition. You can click here to see a video of John Meadows teaching this training. The preliminary exercise superset is performed in the middle of the workout with exercise B. John does 6 heavy reps on the triceps bench press, and then immediately does 6 bench presses with the same weight. This type of superset is a great way to extend the tension time of a set and work your triceps more than usual. Strategy 2: Supersets after quitting Supersets after exhaustion are another simple but extremely effective superset for a muscle group. Post-exhaustion supersets are a training method where you perform a compound exercise immediately after an isolation exercise for the same muscle group. For example, you could do a superset of incline presses with dumbbells and incline swings with dumbbells for the chest or overhead presses and lateral raises with dumbbells for the deltoids. Studies show that post-exhaustion supersets are even more effective than pre-exhaustion supersets in building muscle mass. You can load the high threshold motor units in your program first with a compound exercise, then further fatigue the muscle with a lighter isolation exercise. In my experience, supersets after exhaustion are particularly effective at building big hands. Here are the super sets after exhaustion made popular by strength trainer Charles Poliquin. Look at this: Charles PolikinPost-extension superset arm
- A1 : Pull-ups (narrow/supine grip), 5 x 6-8, 3/0/1/0, 10 seconds rest
- A2 : Dumbbell bend at 45 degrees (back grip), 5 x 10-12, 2/0/2/0, 3 minutes rest.
- B1 : V-bar curl (vertical upper body), 5 x 6-8, 3/0/1/0, 10 seconds rest.
- B2 : Extension with suspension rope, 5 x 10-12, 2/0/1/2, 3 minutes break
Here are the training videos: Exercise A1, Exercise A2, Exercise B1, Exercise B2. This workout has two different supersets after exhaustion: one for the biceps and one for the triceps. In the first superset after exhaustion, do a superset of pull-ups and dumbbell squats. Most people don’t think of pull-ups as a biceps exercise. But if you perform them as a superset with dumbbell oblique extensions, they can be extremely effective! One of the features of this superset is that it overloads both biceps heads. Pull-ups overload the head of the short biceps because the elbows are in front of the body, while dumbbell oblique stretches overload the head of the long biceps because the elbows are behind the body when you stretch the weight. After five sets of this amazing set, your biceps will be begging you to spare them! Some triceps exercises are just as effective. You’re about to perform a great set after exhaustion with two great triceps exercises: V-bar curls and triceps extensions on the overhead cable. Research shows that overhead bending is the best exercise to train all three heads of the triceps, while hanging cable extensions are a fantastic exercise to stretch and fatigue the long head of the triceps. After five sets of this amazing set after exhaustion, your triceps will feel ready to explode! Strategy #3: Mechanical advantage of superstructures Mechanical Advantage Supersets are a training method in which you perform two different variations of the same exercise in succession. The key is to start with a more difficult variation of the exercise and work up to an easier variation. For example, you can do B. Do pull-ups with a wide grip, rest 10 seconds, then do pull-ups with a narrow grip. You get stronger when you pull up with the narrow/lower grip, so you don’t need to change the amount of weight lifted from one exercise to the next! One of the things I really like about supersets with mechanical advantage is that they are very easy to perform in a busy commercial gym. You may only use one device at a time. Here are some supersets for the upper back that focus on the hypertrophic mechanical benefit. Look at this: Mechanical upper back enhancement Superset Training
- A1 : Deadlift (wide grip/push-up), 4 x 12-15, 4/0/X/0, 10 seconds rest.
- A2: Ligament pull (tight/low grip), 4 x AMRAP**, 4/0/X/0, 3 minutes rest
- B1 : High bar rowing, 4 x 10-12, 2/0/1/0, rest 2 minutes
**Do as many repetitions as possible with the same weight you used in exercise A1. Here are the training videos: Exercise A1, exercise A2, exercise B1. In the first part of this workout, supersets with mechanical advantage come into play. Perform wide grip pull-ups followed by tight grip pull-ups. This is a great way to create more muscle damage and metabolic fatigue in your lats, so you can get bigger and stronger. Make sure you use the same weight for the first two exercises. That’s the whole point of supersets with a mechanical advantage! In my experience, supersets with mechanical advantage work particularly well to increase functional hypertrophy or the characteristic hypertrophy of rapidly contracting muscle fibers. The key to training fast twitch muscle fibers is to use sets of 4-8 repetitions. This is a great lower body superset after exhaustion to build functional hypertrophy. Look at this: Mechanical advantage of quadriceps superset training
- A1: Front squat (close position/flat heel), 5 x 4-6, 2/0/X/0, rest 10 seconds
- A2: Back squat (narrow bar/flat wheel), 5 x AMRAP**, 2/0/X/0, 3 minutes rest
Here are the training videos: Exercise A1, Exercise A2. For this exercise, perform a set of heavy squats for 4-6 reps. After the last repetition, remove the weight and immediately get under the bar to perform a set of squats. Next, remove the weight from the rack, step out and perform as many reps as possible in the back squats with the same weight you used in the front squats. You will probably do 4-6 reps in the front squat and 1-4 reps in the back squat, depending on your strength in the front squat. Of course, you can do some additional quadriceps and hamstring exercises for a complete lower body workout. But if you are using this training method, that should be your main focus. It’s incredibly difficult, but if you’re brave enough to endure the pain, you’ll be rewarded with functional hypertrophy patches in your feet. Strategy #4: Heavy and light superstructure series One of the benefits of supersets for individual body parts is that you can use different sets of repetitions for each muscle group. This allows you to target different types of muscle fibers with each exercise and maximize the three triggers for muscle growth:
- Mechanical tension
- Muscle injuries
- Metabolic fatigue
One of the best strategies for supersets is to perform the first exercise with low reps and the second exercise with high reps. It’s called a heavy-light superset. For example, you can perform the first exercise in a range of 5-8 reps and the second exercise in a range of 10-20 reps. This way, you get the benefits of sets with heavy weights and the benefits of push-up sets with higher reps combined into one comprehensive set. Here’s an example of weighted upper back supersets you can try at the gym. Look at this: Back training in heavy/lightweight supersets
- A1: pull-ups (middle/upper grip), 5 x 6, 3/0/1/0, 10 seconds rest
- A2: Deadlift (wide/forearm grip), 5 x 15, 2/0/1/0, 3 minutes rest
- B1 : Chest rowing (pronounced grip/elbows pointing outwards), 3 x 6, 2/0/1/2, rest 10 seconds
- B2 : Seated rope row, 3 x 15, 2/0/1, 3 minute break
Here are the training videos: Exercise A1, Exercise A2, Exercise B1, Exercise B2. This workout works all the muscle groups in the upper back, including the lats, trapezius, rhomboids and big core. There are many different ways to develop supersets with heavy and light weights. The key is to experiment yourself to see what your body responds best to. Strategy #5: Triple Threat Supersets If you’re really creative, you can perform up to three different supersets for a particular muscle group during a workout. This superset training method has no official name, so I’m calling it Triple Threat Supersets. Triple Threat Supersets are particularly effective for training a complex muscle group, such as the biceps or triceps. Most people don’t realize it, but the biceps is a very complex muscle group. For best results, use exercises that target the long and short heads of the biceps. You should also use exercises that directly target other muscles for spinning, such as. B. Brachialis and brachioradialis. One of the best ways to develop a superset for biceps training is to use three different supersets that directly target each of these muscles:
- Long biceps head
- Short biceps head
- Shoulder and arm joints
Don’t worry, I’ll show you exactly how. You’re looking at an amazing Triple Threat superset developed by Charles Poliquin. Look at this: The Triple Threat by Charles Polikin Biceps Supersets
- A1 : Dumbbell curls on both shoulders (back grip), 3 x 10-12, 3/0/1/0, 10 seconds rest.
- A2 : Preacher ez-bar curl (wide/supine grip), 3 x 10-12, 2/0/2/0, 120 seconds rest.
- B1 : Zottman sit-ups, 3 x 10-12, 4/0/1/0, rest 10 seconds
- B2 : Cross-bar curl (wide/impregnated grip), 3 x 10-12, 2/0/2/0, 120 seconds rest.
- C1 : DB Curl at 45 degrees (rear grip), 3 x 10-12, 3/0/1/0, 10 seconds rest.
- C2 : 60 degree cable twist, 3 x 10-12, 2/0/2/0, 120 seconds rest.
Here are the training videos: Exercise A1, Exercise A2, Exercise B1, Exercise B2, Exercise C1, Exercise C2. This workout uses three supersets to overload all the muscles involved in the spins. The first superset uses two types of extensions with preloaders to overload the short head of the biceps. The second superset uses two types of backward rotations to overload the brachialis and brachioradialis. Finally, the last superset uses two types of oblique extensions to overload the long head of the biceps. If you are looking for a hypertrophy workout to shock your biceps, then this is the workout for you! Make sure you edit each sentence. You don’t have to train to failure, but if you leave more than 1 or 2 reps in the tank in a set, you’re not training, you’re faking it! Part 2: Supersets for opposite muscle groups Opposite muscle group supersets, or antagonistic supersets, are an advanced training method where you alternate sets for opposite muscle groups. You could, for example. B. Perform one set of chest movements, rest 1-2 minutes, perform one set of back movements, rest 1-2 minutes, and perform another set of chest movements. Continue alternating between forward and backward until you have completed all sets of both exercises. Many of the world’s best strength trainers, like Josh Bryant and Charles Polikin, use supersets with their athletes for opposing muscle groups. There are three main reasons why you should use supersets for opposing muscle groups in your program:
- They help you activate more muscle fibers and create more strength in your target muscles.
- You’ll increase your muscle endurance, allowing you to perform more quality sets per exercise.
- They allow you to perform more high-quality sets in the same amount of time.
An excellent teaching method! If you’re training for extra muscle growth, another great benefit of supersets for opposing muscle groups is that they give you an incredible pump. This is one of the reasons why Arnold Schwarzenegger used supersets of opposing muscle groups in all his workouts! Here’s Arnold Schwarzenegger’s 6-day training:
- Monday: Chest / Back
- Tuesday: Quadriceps / Hamstrings
- Wednesday: Biceps / Triceps
- Thursday: Chest / Back
- Friday: Quadriceps / Hamstrings
- Saturday: Biceps / Triceps
- Sunday: On the website
As you can see, Arnold designed his entire training program to take advantage of supersets for opposing muscle groups. Here is an example of one of Arnold’s chest and back training days where he used supersets. Look at this: Arnold Schwarzenegger Chest and Back Supersets
- A1: pull-ups (wide/impacted grip), 3-5 sets of 6-12 reps each
- A2 : Bench press (wide grip), 3-5 sets of 6-12 reps each
- B1: leg raise (wide/forward grip), 3-5 sets of 6-12 reps each
- B2 : Incline bench press at 30 degrees (wide grip), 3-5 sets of 6-12 reps.
- C1 : Rowing on the bar, 3-5 sets with 8-15 repetitions
- C2 : Flat DB Machs, 3-5 sets of 8-15 reps each
- D1 : Seated cable pulley (V-handle), 3-5 sets of 8-15 reps each
- D2 : Crossover on ropes with high pull, 3-5 sets of 8-15 reps.
Here are the training videos: Exercise A1, Exercise A2, Exercise B1, Exercise B2, Exercise C1, Exercise C2, Exercise D1, Exercise D2. Arnold performed his entire program, alternating sets for opposite muscle groups. He did a set of pull-ups, rested 1 minute, did a set of bench presses, rested 1 minute, and did another set of pull-ups. He used this technique literally in every set of his workouts. Of course, supersets for opposing muscle groups are also an incredible way to train for absolute strength. By alternating sets for two opposing muscle groups, you can generate more power and encourage greater strength gains than when you perform traditional straight sets. You can even train with sets of 1 to 3 reps, with supersets for opposing muscle groups! Here’s a modified Hepburn workout for your chest and back that you can try. Look at this: Modified Hepburn Routine Supersets
- A1 : Bench press (broad shoulder grip), 8 x 1, 4/0/X/0, rest 100 seconds
- A2: pull-ups (narrow/neutral grip), 8 x 1, 4/0/X/0, 100 seconds rest
- B1 : Bench press (medium grip), 5 x 5, 3/0/X/0, rest 90 seconds
- B2: pull-ups (medium/neutral grip), 5 x 5, 3/0/X/0, rest 90 seconds
Here are the training videos: Exercise A1, Exercise A2. As you can see, you alternate exercises for two opposite muscle groups throughout the workout. Typically, you can’t do 8 sets of simple exercises, then 5 sets of 5 reps in a slightly modified version of the same exercises. But if you use supersets for opposing muscle groups, it becomes very easy to do. I think you’ll be surprised how much your muscle endurance increases when you train this way. There’s another superset technique I want to show you. If you’re really creative, you can combine two different types of supersets into one training method. In other words: You perform supersets on the same muscle group and supersets on opposite muscle groups during the same workout. This becomes clearer when we look at an example of a training program. Look at this: Advanced upper arm assembly
- A1 : Pull-ups (narrow/supine grip), 5 x 6-8, 3/0/1/0, 10 seconds rest
- A2: Dumbbell curl, 5 x 10-12, 2/0/2/0, 2 minutes rest
- A3 : V-bar curl (vertical upper body), 5 x 6-8, 3/0/1/0, 10 seconds rest.
- A4 : Extension with suspension rope, 5 x 10-12, 2/0/1/2, 2 minute break
Here are the training videos: Exercise A1, Exercise A2, Exercise A3, Exercise A4. This is a slightly modified version of the hand supersets after exhaustion that I showed you earlier in this article. The main difference is that you alternate between biceps and triceps supersets. In other words: You do a biceps superset, rest 2 minutes, do a triceps superset, rest 2 minutes, and do another biceps superset. Repeat this process until you have completed 5 supersets for each exercise. This way you get the best of both worlds: Supersets for the same muscle group and supersets for opposite muscle groups! I think you’ll be surprised how effective this type of training can be with supersets to improve muscle hypertrophy. Supplement Supersets are one of the oldest and most effective methods of high intensity training. Bodybuilders, powerlifters and other athletes around the world use supersets to build size and strength as quickly as possible. There are two basic types of supersets: Supersets for the same muscle group and supersets for opposite muscle groups. Super sets for the same muscle group are often a high-intensity training technique in strength training. They allow you to train to the point of failure to really fatigue and build your muscles. Supersets for opposing muscle groups are very different from each other. They are excellent for increasing size and strength and can be used in almost any training program. The big disadvantage of supersets for opposing muscle groups is that you may need a dedicated training area where you train opposing muscle groups together each training day. In summary, supersets are an advanced training method that can help you reach your fitness goals in record time. So, what are you waiting for? Hit the gym and try these advanced superset strategies! If your desires are strong enough, you will feel that you have superhuman abilities to accomplish anything. Thanks for reading and good luck with your strength training! Dr. Mike Jansen. I am the creator and owner of Revolutionary Program Design. I help advanced athletes take their training to the next level and achieve results they didn’t even know they had.
link to 3 workouts for the big bench press! 3 workouts with waves for the big bench press! Wave loading is one of the best training methods to get a great bench press. A bench press wave is a series of three sets performed with a decreasing number of repetitions. For example. Link to Dorian Yates’ biceps workout! Dorian Yates’ biceps workout! In this comprehensive guide, I’ll show you how to build big, strong arms with Dorian Yates’ Biceps Training. Dorian Yates is one of my favorite bodybuilders. He won the Mr. Olympia contest…Supersets is a fitness program designed to help you build the lean muscle and strength that will help you burn fat and increase your metabolism. The word ‘Supersets’ is the name given to a ‘2 for 1’ training technique in which you superset two (or more) sets of an exercise at the same time. For example, you might superset chest and back today.. Read more about poliquin full body workout and let us know what you think.
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