T Nation

Antagonistic or Straight Routines?


What is better overall, antagonistic or straight routines.

I could do say chest & back, in that order. Or alternate between the two?


A1 - Incline Bench Press
B2 - Flat Bench Press
B2 - Flat Bench Fly
C1 - Pull Overs

Followed by back


A1 - Flat Bench Press
A2 - Weighted Pull Ups
B1 - Incline Bench Press
B2 - Bent Over Rows
C1 - Flat Bench Fly


What would you recommend?


Switch A2 with B2.


If youre implying that one type of program is inherently better than another then you have no idea whatsoever how bodybuilding works.


If you are already using antagonistic pairings, it doesn't really matter whether you alternate or do 1 bodypart first, then the other. That said, I will do my "core" lift for each bodypart first, in straight sets, then my secondary lifts in superset fashion. I've found it more efficent time-wise, but on my real heavy sets done first, I don't like supersetting as it's too draining. Example:

A. Bench press (straight sets)

B. T-bar rows (straight sets)

C1. DB Incline (supersets)
C2. Pullups/Wide rows

D1. Some type of HS or machine chest work (supersets)
D2. Lat pulls


Don't get hung up over what's best for muscle growth, do it for whatever's convenient. If my routine allows for antagonistic training, I'll do it for the sake of saving time (because I workout before work usually). And I will rest as long as I feel like, I don't rush it.

Antagonistic training doesn't make you grow bigger. And if you were doing it for fat burning (i.e. shorter rest periods) then you'd be compromising strength gains...and/or getting too distracted from what you actually lifting for.


One isn't inherently better than the other it depends on your goals and if you actualy have the focus to do a heavy set of back after a heavy set of chest


yes do opposing muscles it works for a reason!