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Optimum number of sets per muscle

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Catalystx2
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2003/12/20 07:48:33 (permalink)

Optimum number of sets per muscle

What the title asks...whats the optimum number of sets per muscle? Whats to low, whats to high?
#1

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    Raptor
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    RE: Optimum number of sets per muscle 2003/12/20 10:10:38 (permalink)
    how long is a piece of string?
    #2
    Big-Ron
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    RE: Optimum number of sets per muscle 2003/12/20 11:46:04 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Raptor

    how long is a piece of string?



    exactly!!

    You've just got to experiment for yourself, look at lee priest for example (sorry for using a pro, but i doubt you'll know the guy down my gym!) he uses 20 sets for bi's and tri's, whereas me for example does no direct work the the bi's or tri's.

    It's totally individual and unique and i suggest you start figuring out now what works best for you and milk it dry.
    #3
    T-Bone123
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    RE: Optimum number of sets per muscle 2003/12/20 12:12:59 (permalink)
    As a very vague guide;

    10-12 sets for larger muscles (Legs, Back etc)
    6-8 for smaller groups (Biceps, Triceps)

    But you may respond to more/less sets, everyone is different. If you are a beginner i wouldnt have mega amounts of volume though.

    #4
    Catalystx2
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    RE: Optimum number of sets per muscle 2003/12/21 09:05:54 (permalink)
    Would chest be a large muscle?

    When I work out I always strive for DOMS. The workout I had last night was a full upperbody (will go back to splitting the workout next week).

    Heres what I did in this order, and I go to failure(or a rep from failure) on every set...really gets me fatigued at the end but I see very good gains

    3x6-7 DIPS
    3x6-7 concentration curls
    3x10 close-grip lat pulldown
    3x8 dumbell shrugs
    3x6-7 benchpress
    2x8 preacher curls
    2x8 military press
    2x8 pec deck(one that hits both lats and chest)

    Now being the day after, and how I always strive for DOMS, I can really feel it in my biceps/triceps. My back/chest/shoulders hurt but not as much as my biceps but my traps barely(only did 3 sets, but I dont want my traps to grow much) hurt at all. And of course by hurt I mean the degree of soreness, as the soreness does not keep me from doing day-to-day activities but I can definately feel them when moving around and the effect wares off by the 3rd day or so.

    Can also feel it in my abs and quads. As you can see from my workout I work neither directly so I assume I'm using those as stabilizers as I always try and keep good form.

    I'm guessing since you guys claim its different for most people, I should add more sets to my pec deck that hits the chest and back to work them out more. But then again I always seem to have a hard time squeezing my back/chest at the top of its contraction...so maybe that could be it.

    #5
    T-Bone123
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    RE: Optimum number of sets per muscle 2003/12/21 10:52:58 (permalink)
    Yes the chest would count as a big (ish) muscle.

    Is that the routine you always use, or does it vary?

    How many times a week do you complete that routine?

    Bear in mind that DOMS is not an indication of a good workout, let the scales and tape measure show the progress.

    What gives you the most "DOMS" does not necessarily mean that they are the best exercises, rep-range etc.


    #6
    Catalystx2
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    RE: Optimum number of sets per muscle 2003/12/21 11:15:21 (permalink)
    That was the first time I ever went in and did that routine.

    If DOMS doesn't indicate a good workout, what does it mean? Areas I usually get DOMS in each week get bigger and stronger.
    #7
    Frankie NY
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    RE: Optimum number of sets per muscle 2003/12/21 17:32:25 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by T-Bone123

    As a very vague guide;

    10-12 sets for larger muscles (Legs, Back etc)
    6-8 for smaller groups (Biceps, Triceps)


    No offense T-Bone, but this is a myth that has been said so many times in bodybuilding magazines, books, and by every gym goer that it has become an accepted axiom.

    For the natural trainer, 10-12 sets for larger muscles is too much volume. 7-9 work sets is plenty.

    6-8 sets for smaller muscles will give you exactly that - SMALLER MUSCLES. When you work chest and shoulders, you bomb your triceps. So doing 6-8 sets of triceps after you have already done 10-12 sets for chest is WAY overtraining your triceps. In effect, you've done about 18 sets for triceps!!! Similarly, when you work your back, your biceps get bombed. So doing 6-8 sets of biceps after you have already done 10-12 sets of back is insane. This is why so many guys say "my chest and back are growing great, but I just can't get my arms to grow." No wonder! 36 sets for arms in total!

    3-5 sets for triceps and 3-5 sets for biceps is plenty.

    And how about shoulders? When you work chest, back, or legs, your shoulders get hit hard. Doing more than 3-5 sets per week or direct shoulder work will generally limit their growth.
    #8
    IRON786
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    RE: Optimum number of sets per muscle 2003/12/21 21:23:51 (permalink)
    quote:
    "how long is a piece of string?"


    depends how long it is
    #9
    Cashman
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    RE: Optimum number of sets per muscle 2003/12/22 16:19:14 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Frankie NY

    quote:
    Originally posted by T-Bone123

    As a very vague guide;

    10-12 sets for larger muscles (Legs, Back etc)
    6-8 for smaller groups (Biceps, Triceps)


    No offense T-Bone, but this is a myth that has been said so many times in bodybuilding magazines, books, and by every gym goer that it has become an accepted axiom.

    For the natural trainer, 10-12 sets for larger muscles is too much volume. 7-9 work sets is plenty.

    6-8 sets for smaller muscles will give you exactly that - SMALLER MUSCLES. When you work chest and shoulders, you bomb your triceps. So doing 6-8 sets of triceps after you have already done 10-12 sets for chest is WAY overtraining your triceps. In effect, you've done about 18 sets for triceps!!! Similarly, when you work your back, your biceps get bombed. So doing 6-8 sets of biceps after you have already done 10-12 sets of back is insane. This is why so many guys say "my chest and back are growing great, but I just can't get my arms to grow." No wonder! 36 sets for arms in total!

    3-5 sets for triceps and 3-5 sets for biceps is plenty.

    And how about shoulders? When you work chest, back, or legs, your shoulders get hit hard. Doing more than 3-5 sets per week or direct shoulder work will generally limit their growth.



    I know where you are coming from bro but that's not neccesarily the case as different people respond to different numbers of sets, etc. I trained for a year using that basis and made excellent gains all over (from 210Ibs to 240Ibs in that time). Personally I feel that this is a good beginners rule of thumb to get someone on the right path, but each to their own.
    #10
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