Drop sets and supersets are a method millions of lifters around the world use to train to failure as a means to promulgate increased muscle growth when good ol’ linear progression no longer does the trick.
After around the 3-year mark, most lifters cannot rely on linear progression and flock to harder training methods such as supersets to continue building muscle when their gains slow down.
Aside from drop sets supersets, lifters resort to employing burnouts, forced reps, tri-sets, agonist-antagonist supersets, banded reps, mechanical drop sets, running the rack, and a myriad of other training methods to go beyond failure.
If you watched YouTube around 10 years ago or so, prominent fitness YouTubers would employ creative training methods to 1) wow their audiences 2) build muscle while flirting with their genetic ceilings.
Endless sets of 3 by 10 will leave you shortchanged after a certain point; and you are beholden to spice up your workouts to continue making progress.
In my recent switch to bodybuilding from powerlifting, I have unearthed a new joie de vivre in my training — including the creation of the Herculean Press.
And today, as I was polishing off my workout, I decided to try a massive burnout/superset to finish off my chest n’ tris session.
And this is how the “Rebound Drop Set” was born.
Rebound Drop Set Birth
While doing my final set of triceps extensions, I decided to hit about 3-4 dropsets.
Towards the end, on the final intended set, the weight had been dropped so low that, if anything, it helped me recover my energy levels, so I increased the weight back up and hit that to failure.
Traditionally speaking, on such a mega drop set, most lifters, instead of increasing the weight after supposedly going to failure on the final set, would finish the set there.
Instead, you can use the final intended set as a brief rest period, while continuing to tear down the muscle fibers, before increasing the weight to the penultimate set and cranking out more reps.
Running the rack has been a common feature in my recent workouts, with the inclusion of this method to hit smaller muscles such as my side delts and biceps.
When To Use Them
Rebound Drop Sets are great for isolation exercises such as lateral raises, curls, and extensions — although, given their novelty, I’m yet to experiment with them on compound movements.
An example of a Rebound Drop Set would be as follows:
Take the triceps extension for instance:
|Total Weight (Resistance)
On a traditional drop set the exercise would’ve finished after the 16 reps on 25lb resistance; but with the Rebound Drop Set, you will be using what would have been the final set as an opportunity to recover and go after more total reps.
This is an opportunity to go beyond failure in a method that is even more taxing than traditional post-failure methods.
It is also exploiting the use of lighter reps to somewhat recharge before truly exhausting the muscle.
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