When you look at those who have impressive physiques, there's always one thing in common that they have - they've figured out what works for their body and they do it over and over again.
This is something most don't seem to get though (myself often at times too); that different things work for different people. Principles are always the same (like intensity/effort, consistency, adequate diet etc), but as for training; this can vary a little.
Obviously, some people have certain areas to work on that others don't. And some people need to go about their diet/cardio a little differently. But more specifically to this topic; I'm talking volume and frequency of training. I've noticed that there tends to be about 3 major categories that people fall into. I don't like to put people in "boxes", but it does generally tend to be the case.
What makes me smile sometimes is the fact that EVERYONE is biased to some degree (based on what they've learned works for themselves). You can find yourself being narrow minded and only recommending people do what you found works (not taking into consideration their body). This is where disagreements can arise - "that'll never work!" or "no, you gotta do more than that!"
Thought I'd post this for those who seem to be "on the fence". The type who never seem to know exactly what to do and always seem to need others to show them. Also, it's important to have faith in what you are doing for long term results. Sometimes you can start to feel almost "guilty", or confused if what you've discovered works ok for yourself, but seems to go completely opposite to what others do. Hopefully this thread (along with other's input) will be more reassuring/give you better direction lol
The low volume, high frequency group. These individuals tend to 'thrive' on brief and frequent. Frequency often falls in the 2x/week category. And volume is often around 5-8 sets/bodypart/week mark. This group don't usually have a high tolerance to many intensifying techniques and generally tend to be able to over-train more easily.
Often, other people who are not from this category cannot understand this groups "makeup", and group 1 type people often get labelled as under-achievers (like they're not trying hard enough) but it's simply because unlike most of the other groups, they don't respond greatly to training differently to what's just been outlined (e.g. increased volume often leads to stagnation for them).
The low frequency, higher volume group. These individuals thrive on infrequent "thrashing" of the muscles. They'll often hit a muscle group, and not directly hit it again for up to another week. Frequency often = 1x/week. Volume can vary quit a bit, but is usually 8 sets or higher/bodypart/week. IMO, this group has the better potential for quicker size gains than group 1 do.
This one's like a mix of group 1+2. They thrive on high volume which can include high frequency too. If they do high frequency, they lower the volume somewhat to balance it out. Volume often falls within the 12-15 sets/bodypart/week range, although it can be much higher sometimes. It's not unusual to see this sort of person in the gym for 2+ hours/session. I can't prove this, and it may not always be the case, but I've often noticed that genetically, these individuals tend to have a naturally decent build to start with and often have to be more concious about fat control.
In no way do I want to sound dogmatic here, or like I'm putting limits on anyone
Some people have differences not only with others, but with their own body parts. Take for example group 2 - they may have a bodypart (e.g. chest/calves) that responds better to more frequency. But generally, most of peoples training/splits falls into some main category.
BTW, I'm mostly group 1