If you’re stuck in a gym training rut, try taking a pause–no, seriously, try it out: take a pause rep.

Many people who train don’t pause before each rep, but are missing out on a tremendous amount of potential for growth.

Far too many people bench and deadlift using touch n’ go reps. And while it certainly has its place, sometimes it’s better to take a step back before taking a step forward — and do your darn pause reps.

The Best Pause Reps

pause rep
Former bench press record holder doing a pause rep

One of my favorite squat accessory movements is the simple pause squat.

Sit in the hole for a second or two before ascension as a secondary movement and watch your strength out of the bottom of the lift grow.

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Furthermore, you’ll develop a ton of size in your stabilizing muscles in your posterior chain, core, and inner thighs.

Earlier today, I broke a Spoto Press PR on the bench press, inspiring this brief blog post.

On my bench press speed days, I only ever Spoto Press as it requires far more neuromuscular activation than a touch n’ go rep. Besides, it precludes any false momentum from being generated by bouncing the bar off the chest.

(A Spoto Press is an invisible board press where the bar is paused an inch or two off the chest.)

Deadlifts from the ground can prevent the development of weaknesses off the floor from arising. And pausing mid-shin can help develop some serious size and strength for your pulling.

One thing I will say about pausing, however, is that it is slightly more taxing on the nervous system and body than simple touch n’ go.

But pause lifts can be incorporated into most movements to gain strength and muscle when plateaus have been hit.

I even sometimes do a pause halfway through my pull ups to make them more challenging.

Whatever the exercise or occasion, a short pause rep can go a long way.

Do pause reps

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