For this research, 42 healthy men were split into four groups that followed different protocols for sets and reps, though everyone had the same number of workouts. Try to include all the rep ranges into your workouts. We often categorize rep ranges in three categories: strength (1-6 reps), hypertrophy (6-12 reps) and endurance (12-15+ reps). And on the other end of the spectrum, if you stuck mainly with a higher rep range, for many people this would be extremely metabolically taxing and exhausting. Best Rep Range for Strength They also completed 4-5 reps at 88%-90% of their max for the upper body. Then your body will adapt for your next workout. In fact, most of us simply follow what’s known as the “strength-endurance continuum”: As a result, there exists a hypertrophy rep range of roughly 6-12 reps, which is often proposed as the best rep range to maximize muscle growth. Therefore, you're performing less effective reps and getting less growth in return. Control Group To accurately gauge each group’s starting intensities for their sets, rese… For example, in the following chest workout here’s how you could effectively vary the rep range within it in order to maximize growth and strength: Or if you run an upper/lower split or a push/pull/legs workout split…. When it comes to training for hypertrophy (or call it power-building, bodybuilding, etc) then my viewpoint has always been that of take advantage of all potential pathways to growth, rather than trying to isolate the “holy grail” of rep-ranges where muscle magically grows best. Training for Muscle Size (Hypertrophy) If you're training for muscle size, choose a weight at which you reach muscle failure in the 8-12-rep range. Despite some impractical situations, you can now see that the hypertrophy rep range is wider than most people think. Cheers! It's a simple, but powerful principle. Your results may vary. Please Note: The author of this site is not engaged in rendering professional advice or services to the individual reader. It's demanding for your CNS (central nervous system) and makes you more tired. Range of motion (ROM) Full range of motion generally causes more muscle hypertrophy, but partial ROM can cause site-specific hypertrophy. I aim for better lean mass, lower fat (current 17-18) and overall improve in my health. Specifically, the 1-5 rep range is best for gaining strength. Then muscle growth will be similar regardless of what rep range you choose to use! In brief, the study looked at muscular adaptations in a “bodybuilding-type” routine versus a “powerlifting-type” routine in resistance-trained men when the routines were equated for volume load. However the reason 8-12 is generally what you want for hypertrophy is because doing that rep scheme you can get a lot of time under tension which as we know is important for hypertrophy. Hi when you mean equating volume may I have an e.g. Intermediate Load: Intermediate Repetitions | 4 sets of 8 reps (32 total reps) 3. do you mean 1 heavy set of bench equal 1 moderate weight set of bench at higher volume? You will still get stronger, but not as fast as the strength's one. But this is the first time I see it answered with a balanced view with supporting facts. The topic of rep ranges was so intriguing to me that I ultimately made it a focus of my doctoral work. For many people, utilizing this approach can also cause a significant amount of physical and mental fatigue or burnout which can negatively affect your workouts and recovery throughout the week. Especially since there’s benefits to incorporating lower reps and benefits to incorporating higher reps. For example, we know that lower reps are more beneficial for strength gains. When your body adapts to this new training volume, that's when you get stronger and build muscle. It all depends on your goal. Hope you enjoyed it and found it useful! Don’t forget to give me a follow and connect with me on Instagram, Facebook, and Youtube as well. Required fields are marked *. “For example, when you train in the 6-8 rep range, the adaptations are still somewhat neural, but also metabolic/structural: In this rep range, you get excellent strength gains and also excellent hypertrophy. Progressive overload is the principle of trying to increase your training volume on a per session basis. The 24-50 Principle cuts through the confusion. 4 Point Tempo On the other hand, someone who requires muscle endurance such as a long-distance runner will primarily focus on the endurance rep range. The author shall not be liable or responsible for any loss or damage allegedly arising from any information or suggestions within this blog. Here's a strength workout, which primarily focuses on the 1-6 rep range. That's been proven many times. Reps as low as 4-5 reps can still produce robust muscle gain along with reps as high as 30-35. It's demanding on your CNS, but not as bad as the strength's one. Most people think you need to lift heavy weights in order to build muscle. I now in my intermediate level. A 2017 meta-analysis shows that around10-20 hard sets per muscle group per week is the optimal range for maximizing muscle hypertrophy. Several years ago I published the data collected in accordance with my dissertation study. You will reach failure in a moderate amount of time. The best rep range for building mass is 6-12 reps. It’s been proven to have a slight advantage in studies, and it allows you to pack in a higher number of quality reps over the course of each week. But the key is to experiment with it and see what you’ll be most consistent with and find what your body responds to best. Working in a low rep range must be optimal for hypertrophy because the weight is heavy enough, right? Both groups did the same respective 1 rep max percentage and trained with the same effort by going to failure. And this is exactly where the 6-12 rep range comes in handy: It’s simply the most effective rep range to use in order to accumulate volume. I’m not saying this is the only way you should lift, there are various effective rep and tempo protocols for hypertrophy, this is just an example of one. Can isolation exercices (bicep curl, behind body cable curl , concentaration curl , incline dumbbell kickbacks..) be used for strength with a lower rep range (4-6 reps)? 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. Therefore suggesting that incorporating both approaches would likely be optimal in the long run for strength AND size. You may be a little confused now as to what exactly you should do, so here’s what I’d recommend. 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