Mar 262016

tnationInteresting way to train both strength and hypertrophy in the same set from Christian Thibaudeau over at T Nation.

Cluster sets have always been great for strength gains. Here’s a new twist on them that’ll maximize hypertrophy too.


Cluster sets are one of the most powerful training methods for intermediate and advanced lifters. A typical set looks like this:

  1. Load the barbell (or machine) to 90% of your maximum, a weight you could normally lift 3 times.
  2. Do one rep and rack the bar. Rest 10 seconds.
  3. Do another rep and rack the bar. Rest for 10 seconds.
  4. Continue in this manner until you reach the maximum number of reps you can do, which should be between 4 and 6 reps

Regular clusters shine when it comes to muscle damage and mechanical stress, but they neglect the other two hypertrophy pathways: the release of local growth factors and the mTOR pathway. So if we want to make clusters even more effective, we should find a way to include these two elements. Here’s how.

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