T Nation

Drop Sets Causing Fast Twitch Hypertrophy?

Correct me if I’m wrong, but to my knowledge towards the end of your set, which is also where your most fatigued, your hitting your fast twitch fibers the most. So if you continue with drop sets right after that set wouldn’t you continue hitting the fast twitch fibers since your already fatigued? Just curious. Thanks for any info

[quote]djm_e22 wrote:
Correct me if I’m wrong, but to my knowledge towards the end of your set, which is also where your most fatigued, your hitting your fast twitch fibers the most. So if you continue with drop sets right after that set wouldn’t you continue hitting the fast twitch fibers since your already fatigued? Just curious. Thanks for any info[/quote]

Other way around, towards the end of your set you are recruiting slow twitch fibers, because fast twitch fibers start dropping out.

You can do drop-sets until you’re down to the pink DB’s and totally destroy that muscle group in that single session…
But how the fuck are you going to progress next session (might still be possible) and ALL the sessions after that?

It isn’t about “hitting all the muscle-fibers” or “stimulating this or that to the max” or “hitting the muscle from all possible angles”, it’s about progression on key-exercises.

Of course if you’ve got the genetics (and the stomach-size) of trevor smith, then I guess you can do all the drop-sets and forced reps you want…

It seems that overanalyzers are domaining these days. At least it’s not just pure trolling.

[quote]djm_e22 wrote:
Correct me if I’m wrong, but to my knowledge towards the end of your set, which is also where your most fatigued, your hitting your fast twitch fibers the most. So if you continue with drop sets right after that set wouldn’t you continue hitting the fast twitch fibers since your already fatigued? Just curious. Thanks for any info[/quote]

I am a little worried that someone who is this turned around on what fast twitch muscle fibers do is making entire training concepts based on the wrong info.

That means your third step is to stop acting like you know enough about muscle tissue to come up with some brand new training strategy.

Your second step is to get a college level A&P book (maybe even along with one for Biology) so you can learn the real basics so all of what you think you know isn’t coming from opinionated internet articles.

Your first step is to get into the gym and try increasing your strength level in whatever rep range you have chosen on whatever exercises you are doing and then realize that this is the key to more progress…not drop sets.

I think as you lower the weight you begin recruiting less motor units which is counter productive.

I used to think it was fast twitch fibers first too and still might, but from what I got out of the article was something like no matter what your ST fibers are always twitching during a set. No matter if it is 1RM or 8RM. On a heavy 1RM the ST fibers obviously are not doing much cause they twitch to slow, but the are still twitching.

On an 8RM set both muscle fibers are twitching but with the 8th rep failing your FT fibers have completely fatigued and now your ST Fibers are the only ones working but they twitch to slow that they can’t keep the weight from falling down. So I would think if you continued with drop sets you just keep beating the crap out of your FT Fibers cause your constantly so close to failure.

[quote]djm_e22 wrote:
I used to think it was fast twitch fibers first too and still might, but from what I got out of the article was something like no matter what your ST fibers are always twitching during a set. No matter if it is 1RM or 8RM. On a heavy 1RM the ST fibers obviously are not doing much cause they twitch to slow, but the are still twitching. On an 8RM set both muscle fibers are twitching but with the 8th rep failing your FT fibers have completely fatigued and now your ST Fibers are the only ones working but they twitch to slow that they can’t keep the weight from falling down. So I would think if you continued with drop sets you just keep beating the crap out of your FT Fibers cause your constantly so close to failure.[/quote]

Point being?

[quote]Cephalic_Carnage wrote:
djm_e22 wrote:
I used to think it was fast twitch fibers first too and still might, but from what I got out of the article was something like no matter what your ST fibers are always twitching during a set. No matter if it is 1RM or 8RM. On a heavy 1RM the ST fibers obviously are not doing much cause they twitch to slow, but the are still twitching. On an 8RM set both muscle fibers are twitching but with the 8th rep failing your FT fibers have completely fatigued and now your ST Fibers are the only ones working but they twitch to slow that they can’t keep the weight from falling down. So I would think if you continued with drop sets you just keep beating the crap out of your FT Fibers cause your constantly so close to failure.

Point being?[/quote]

Well I guess now that I think about it, if you do a drop set the FT fibers haven’t rested long enough to be able to even be used in the drop sets. So I guess you wouldn’t be particularly using them after all in the drop sets.

Do heavy mechanical drop sets if you’re going to do any kind of drop setting. Standard drop sets with light weight are only good for a pump and don’t build much size or strength from my experience.

Nothing wrong with wrapping up your exercise with drop sets to make sure you’ve completely fatigued the muscle. I guess it would be the same as using assisted reps on your last set.

  • Adam

Off topic, Professor X’s shoulders are bigger then his head. I would hate to meet him in a dark alley!

First post here and just my 2 cents, but in my experience with drop sets I have had tremendous increases in both size and strength. I haven’t done them in a long time but have recently just started doing them again. I love drop sets!

[quote]williamj wrote:
First post here and just my 2 cents, but in my experience with drop sets I have had tremendous increases in both size and strength. I haven’t done them in a long time but have recently just started doing them again. I love drop sets![/quote]

We need specifics on “tremendous increases in both size and strength”.

How much did you weigh before. How much did you weigh after? How much did your strength increase and on what movements?

It got old on this site for new posters to claim they saw AMAZING progress but yet show no details of what “amazing” means.

[quote]adamhum wrote:
Nothing wrong with wrapping up your exercise with drop sets to make sure you’ve completely fatigued the muscle. I guess it would be the same as using assisted reps on your last set. [/quote] So, you’ve fatigued the muscle some more. That get’s you closer faster to that 405*12 bench… How?

Or maybe it’s just nice to feel a bigger pump/burn or so and to be able to tell yourself “I’ve done so much work in the gym today, surely I’ll grow from that” ? Isn’t that the real reason? :wink:

[quote]

  • Adam

Off topic, Professor X’s shoulders are bigger then his head. I would hate to meet him in a dark alley![/quote]
No worries. He’d have to face you sideways anyway. Dark alleys are usually tight.

[quote]Professor X wrote:
williamj wrote:
First post here and just my 2 cents, but in my experience with drop sets I have had tremendous increases in both size and strength. I haven’t done them in a long time but have recently just started doing them again. I love drop sets!

We need specifics on “tremendous increases in both size and strength”.

How much did you weigh before. How much did you weigh after? How much did your strength increase and on what movements?

It got old on this site for new posters to claim they saw AMAZING progress but yet show no details of what “amazing” means.[/quote]

1)-“I’ve made AMAZING progress on this 4-week routine!!!111 My strength is through the roof!”
= I’ve increased my working weight by 5 lbs for the first time ever (because the routine told me to do that) and I think I look a bit bigger in the mirror!

Alternative version (for guys using the ten sets of three protocol):
Look at me! I used to bench with the 35’s, now I’m using the 50’s! (omitting the fact that he is now doing 3 reps per set instead of 8 or 10 as he used to and didn’t actually get stronger at all).

2)-“I’ve had great success with doing 6 lifts per bodypart, 5 straight sets each + 3 drop-sets”
= I’ve done this for 3 workouts now and the pump is unreal! I feel totally smashed! Progress? What do you mean?

    • “I’ve gained 50 lbs on this routine!!!”
      = I went from 120 to 170 because I finally started to eat more than 1500 calories a day and will hit a brick-wall once I get past my newbie-gains

ive done hacksquat drop sets for 42 reps starting with 3 plates plus either a 25 or 35 and worked down to a single plate.

no complaints, it gave me one hell of a DOMS

[quote]LiveFromThe781 wrote:
ive done hacksquat drop sets for 42 reps starting with 3 plates plus either a 25 or 35 and worked down to a single plate.

no complaints, it gave me one hell of a DOMS[/quote]

And, did it make your quads grow 4 inches ? Did it speed your strength gains up significantly ?

[quote]djm_e22 wrote:
I used to think it was fast twitch fibers first too and still might, but from what I got out of the article was something like no matter what your ST fibers are always twitching during a set. No matter if it is 1RM or 8RM. On a heavy 1RM the ST fibers obviously are not doing much cause they twitch to slow, but the are still twitching.

On an 8RM set both muscle fibers are twitching but with the 8th rep failing your FT fibers have completely fatigued and now your ST Fibers are the only ones working but they twitch to slow that they can’t keep the weight from falling down. So I would think if you continued with drop sets you just keep beating the crap out of your FT Fibers cause your constantly so close to failure.[/quote]

My eyelid started twitching while reading this.

There are two ways to stimulate muscle growth: 1. progression in a movement that stresses your intended muscle group as a prime mover (slow, not usually immediate, but reliable over the long run assuming you keep making progress) that usually requires an extended period of caloric surplus.

  1. Variety - whatever, drop sets, switching rep ranegs, using a pump movement, doing more sets, whatever - this cannot produce CONSISTENT reliable muscle growth over an extended period. I “could” go from a low volume routine to GVT and gain a few pounds of lean mass over a cycle simply due to the variety - again assuming you CAN recover from the sudden assault - but these “gains” won;t stick around unless you use that “additional lean mass” to get stronger in said movements again.

I use some “variety” from time to time. Making consistent strength gains is not easy unless you’re a beginner. I have to provide some additional “stimulus” (besides trying to force strength/reps progress) in almost every session.

Simply put:

  1. a bigger muscle has greater potential to become a stronger muscle.
  2. a stronger muscle has more potential to become a bigger muscle.
    if using crafty stimulus tricks can give you a slight “size” increase, using that “added size” to get stronger in the nexts ession is yoru ebst bet.

[quote]on edge wrote:
djm_e22 wrote:
I used to think it was fast twitch fibers first too and still might, but from what I got out of the article was something like no matter what your ST fibers are always twitching during a set. No matter if it is 1RM or 8RM. On a heavy 1RM the ST fibers obviously are not doing much cause they twitch to slow, but the are still twitching.

On an 8RM set both muscle fibers are twitching but with the 8th rep failing your FT fibers have completely fatigued and now your ST Fibers are the only ones working but they twitch to slow that they can’t keep the weight from falling down. So I would think if you continued with drop sets you just keep beating the crap out of your FT Fibers cause your constantly so close to failure.

My eyelid started twitching while reading this.[/quote]

You are so on-edge. You need to chill.