Stop wasting time in the gym - start using supersets to build serious upper body size and strength!

Advanced Training - Supersets

Once you’ve got past the beginners’ gains stage of training, it’s easy to hit a plateau. One way to prevent coasting as you move into your advanced training years is to push workout intensity.

Advanced lifters need to use auto regulation to choose sensible load and rep ranges. You should only use advanced training techniques once you’ve built a good degree of strength, mind/muscle connection, and self-awareness about your training. Who’s ready for a volume building workout tool that will get more work done in less time?




 

Superman Supersets

What are supersets?

 

Supersetting is an advanced training technique where you pair up two exercises, and perform exercise A followed by exercise B, then rest (and repeat). There are a number of ways to use supersets. You can superset exercises for the same muscle (usually by doing one compound and one isolation). You can also superset antagonistic muscles (like back and chest, or hamstring and quads), or upper/lower body exercises. You can ever superset a compound lift with a body weight version.



How do supersets build strength, size, and mass?

 

Supersets are a great way to get more volume into your workouts (and, as you already know, volume is one of the key factors in progressive overload). By pairing up two exercises into a superset, you get more work done and cut down on rest time too.

The result is more work in less time, and more volume across your week. And if you superset a compound with an isolation or a bodyweight exercise, or superset and upper/lower body pairing, you will raise your heart-rate for better calorie burn and a cardio effect to boot.



How should you start using supersets?

 

Just like you wouldn’t throw every trick in the book at a diet from the outset, we don’t recommend you start using supersets for every session. Choose a lagging body part, or your least favourite session. Supersets will push weak muscle groups out of a plateau, and banish boredom.

Once you know which session is your target for supersets, you need to choose your exercises.



Push, pull, or body part splits?

 

If you currently do a push/pull/legs or upper/lower split, you have the option to superset opposing muscle groups, for example lying hamstring curl and leg extension, machine/plate loaded chest press with machine/plate loaded row, or cable biceps curls with cable triceps push downs.

 




Try these superset suggestions for upper body

 

Chest:

  •    superset dumbbell presses (10-12 reps) with press ups (12+ reps) - 3 sets
  •    superset machine or plate loaded chest press (10-12 reps) with a standing plate squeeze press (12 reps) - 4 sets
  •    superset incline barbell or dumbbell press (10-12 reps) with dips (AMRAP) - 3 sets
AMRAP: As Many Reps As Possible



Shoulders:

  •    superset lateral raises (12-15 reps) with upright rows (10-12 reps) - 4 sets
  •    superset seated dumbbell presses (8-10 reps) with front raises (10-12 reps) - 3 sets
  •    superset dumbbell rear felt flies (10-12 reps) with face pulls (15+ reps) - 3 sets


Back:

  •    superset pull ups (10-12 reps) with lat pull downs (12-15 reps) - 5 sets
  •    superset bent over barbell rows (8-10 reps) with incline bench dumbbell rows (10-12 reps) - 4 sets
  •    superset seated close grip cable rows (10-12 reps) with single arm dumbbell rows (8-10 reps each side) - 4 sets


Arms:

Get more work from your arm day by pairing up two biceps exercises, two triceps exercises, or one of each to keep the workout moving.

  •    superset biceps curls (10-12 reps) with underhand chin ups (AMRAP) - 3 sets
  •    superset overhead triceps extension (10-12 reps) with triceps press ups (AMRAP) - 3 sets
  •    superset EZ bar skull crushers (10-12 reps) with preacher curls (10-12 reps each arm) - 3 sets





Before you go to the gym…

Remember that adding supersets to your training will seriously increase the volume and workload, at the same time decreasing rest times. So start by adding one or two superset pairings into one or two sessions a week. Supersets are a tool in your weaponry, not the main focus of your programming. They’re fast paced, fun, and will break you out of a physical or mental plateau. Use them wisely!