T Nation

When and Why Do Straight Sets for Hypertrophy?

Your methods are working great for me right now. I have been doing an easy, moderate, hard and failure sets for most exercises sometimes with an intensity technique. I will ramp up to a top set of 6 to 8 for my main lift and sometimes upto 18 for small muscle groups. I was wondering under which circumstances would do you do 3 to 4 working sets of the same weight if ever for hypertrophy?


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Never. Not to failure. Why on Earth would I do 4 sets of the same movement to failure?

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Ty appreciate it

Therefore, in the 30 minutes to mass article when you write a rep prescription for 5 sets of 8 in the dumbbell bench press, how is it to be performed? Is it five progressively heavier sets of 8 to a top set or is it 5 sets with the same weight with only the last set approaching failure?

In either the last set would be to failure.

So basically it doesn’t matter very much as long as the last set is to failure?

There needs to be some sets to failure or close to failure. How else are you stimulating growth if you’re not getting close to failure?

Short answer is you’re not.

I kinda feel like an idiot. I originally interpreted it as being 5 sets of 8 all taken to failure, and couldn’t fathom how I would recover from it. Makes a lot more sense now. Thanks for clarifying.

Great idea from you and coach kassem

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I just tried this today and really liked it: https://www.t-nation.com/training/tip-the-single-leg-exercise-you-need. Squats don’t do shit for my quads, they hammer my glutes and lower back.

Good exercise i find bulgarians just build up my glutes

I think it somewhat depends on how vertical the shin is, which is what I liked about the variation I shared. Using the power rack allowed for bringing the knee past the toes without balance being an issue.

Front foot elevated is good too

I’ll have to give them a shot. Have been squatting for years with no quad development to show for it.

Im the exact same. Played hockey my whole life so building glutes, abductors and hamstrings are supereasy for me plus i am built to deadlift not squat well. So building quads is a struggle for me.

Both of those last two examples are really good for biasing the quads.

Regarding the second example/pic of the guy doing the front foot elevated position:

To bias the quads, do you keep the rear foot on the ground (split squat style) or bring it forward in the concentric (reverse lunge style)?

For whatever reason, split squats aggravate my knee whereas Reverse Lunges and Bulgarians feel fine.

Reverse lunges can be easier on the knees for some people because you’re not planting with the working leg (like in a walking lunge). So there’s a lot of immediate torque that has to be absorbed by the knee when you do that. With the reverse lunge that isn’t happening.