T Nation

Greater and Greater Volume?

Chad Waterbury amongst other trainers talks a lot about the training volume of people like gymnasts and circus performers who do a terrific amount of volume and end up with excellent physiques, so is it possible to mimic their success by doing ten sets of three reps three or four times a week as one of his training protocols outlines?

Is this anywhere enough as some of these guys are training upwards of eight hours a day? Look especially at the upper body developement of a top gymnast, they have great musculature and me doing ten sets of weighted dips thrice weekly cant bring me anywhere near their level of work surely.

I just read an article about the high rate of overuse injury among cirque de soleil performers. I wish I could find it.

Yea I think what Chad was going for there is the general principle of frequent use and getting your body used to doing high amounts of volume. I think gymnasts basically get humans as close to apes as they can get, at least physically. If you look at what they do its alot of similar movements to what gorillas or chimps might do.

Only problem being as humans we have a much larger and more powerful lower body so our smaller upper body has to drag around a much larger lower body. But I digress… You should try some of Chad’s stuff and see for yourself. It is definitely against alot of what people think of as optimal to build strength and size, but he is working off a different logic. Give it a whirl…

It seems like you would overtrain or injure yourself quickly. Bear in mind, most gymnast are pretty small with very little body fat. That leaness alone makes them look “bigger” than they are, muscularly. It is hard to apply those same training dynamics to someone who is 6’2".