T Nation

Low Volume, High Intensity Bro Split

What are you guys thoughts using intensity teqnuices and low volume on a Bro Split, like in The Best Damn Workout for natrual lifters.
Example Chest Workout:
Cable Incline Bench: 2-3 warm up sets, then one Rest Pause Set.
DB Incline Bench: 2-3 warm up sets, then one Drop set.
Cable Crossover: 2-3 warm up sets, then one Rest Pause Drop set.

1 Like

CT has a Dorian inspired template like on his website.

Intensity-boosting techniques are very common, arguably mandatory, when training with low volume. Because volume and intensity are inversely related, when one goes down, the other goes up in order to provide a training stimulus. Low volume-low intensity would be a deload (or maintenance). High intensity-high volume would lead to overtraining unless you’re on anabolics.

The Best Damn workout isn’t a bro split, it’s a push-pull workout. There’s no “chest workout” in that program.

Sounds like you’re talking about more of a classic Yates-style training, which can work if you survive it injury-free (by making smart exercise choices, properly programming the whole plan, and optimizing recovery).

1 Like

I tried what you’re talking about for Back Day after reading Thib’s article, it was cool.

I used rest/pause and drop sets for the first 2 lifts then I did mTor (slow eccentrics + pause under tension) instead of Rest/Pause Drop Set for the third lift. That sounds tough, but it’s just cable crossovers, so why not?

It’s really simple to keep track of weights/sets/volume week to week so even if it’s not the most effective routine possible it helped me learn about volume and intensity and how to think about them.

Everything is also really distinct and specific, so if you’re trying to periodize or make adjustments over time it’s really easy to come up with something different for next time.

Can work if you can apply the required intensity :stuck_out_tongue: not much can

Thinking of doing Yates style of training, but with sepreate arm day so it would be Chest, Back, Legs, Shoulders and Arms.
Is this too low of volume for an intermidate lifter? I just really love to push it in the gym, but i can only workout for about 30 minutes in the morning because of work and school.

1 Like

Not if you work hard enough. Did something like that to a client and he asked for more! Probably I would be doing something like 5 exercises per day, and on some exercise 2 sets, and not all using ball-busting techniques

In paul carters article on t nation For Big Shoulders, ditch the free weights he outlines a workout of 11 sets, and all of them are using high intensity teqnuices, from what i’ve heard from guys like John Meadows you’re only supposed to do 1 or 2 high intensity sets in one workout, so is this too much?

There’s more than one way to skin a cat. Instead of trying to pit one established coach against another in a royal rumble to find “the one true method”, realise that all of their methods work, you just have to pick one.


Depends on your personal recovery. When I did a bro split with CT I was doing around 8 sets with intensity techniques (more if you count 4 secs eccentric as such ahahah) and around 10-12 to failure.

Colossus by Meadows has you doing around 5-6 sets with intensity techniques per session, but mind you 90% of all the other sets are RPE 10. Granted this is his program with the highest intensity.

So you’ll have to try it out! Start with 1-3 sets beyond failures at first and assess

You did 8 sets of intensity teqnuices like drop sets and rest pause and mtor sets and 2-4 sets of regular sets to failiure? Or did you do 10-12 sets to failiure on top of the 8 sets of intensity teqnucies?

Sessions around 16 sets, around 12 to failure, 8 of which were using techniques.

But I have a strong tolerance to volume. You don’t need that much (neither do I) to grow

Damn thats a lot in one session. Im trying to stick with Paul Carters guideline of 6-10 sets per week, but im wondering what i should fill that volume up with; mostly intensity teqnuices or mostly straight sets to failiure. Seems like you did mostly intensity teqnuices in terms of your work sets.

Yes, that was a lot, brutal AF. 6-10 seems really good to me.

Thoughts on this:
4-5 exercises per muscle group, two sets for each, one to failiure and one using a intensity teqnuice? Done once a week per muscle of cource.

1 Like

Looks good to me

The gyms in my city are finally reopening AGAIN in two weeks, im gonna get my buddy to start lifting, never touched a weight in his life. Do you think it would be apporpirate for a beginner to do the same program i outlined? Or should he just stick to straight sets to failiure?
Thanks dude

1 Like

He can do the same thing as you, I have no problem with beginners doing brosplits, even if it’s not what I prefer.

But no, nothing to failure. Nothing! He’s a beginner. He doesn’t need to go hard. He needs proper form, and learning to feel the muscles. So everything RPE 7-8 for some time, probably a few months. Might add a set more to each exercise as well.

Thanks for your help!
Your a coach right? Im thinking of becoming a coach myself

1 Like

Not yet, soon.

Well then my friend, keep training hard, and learn everything you can!

1 Like