The major advanced training methods include: supersets, Forced reps, Pyramid system and finally Periodization technique. A superset basically involves a more rigorous training method that do not allow for relaxation in between the sets. Forced reps equally involve performing repetitive actions when the trainee has reached concentric and exhausted through the help of the trainer.
Pyramid system also encompasses developing the muscles through the addition of more weights in a varied manner incorporating both the volume and intensity while the other method which is the periodization employs a more planed training with the time available for training being apportioned evenly to ensure better development of strength and muscles and also controlling if not eradicating over training.
Important to note that before any of the above methods are used in training a proper understanding of each is paramount for effective and avoiding simple injuries that may also result due to over training.
A proper audit of ones health is equally important to ascertain that the trainer is not suffering from any medical complication that may be increased by the trainings that at time may be intense.
Its only when all these are met that one can apply the above training methods and have remarkable results to boost of from the training, since ignoring the medical concern would basically be suicidal.
In today’s contemporary world many people have taken up training in an attempt to improve their physical fitness or just take it up as a career or sport like the body builders. Weight and resistance methods of training have become more popular with many people.
These methods basically uses weight stuck as well as elastic resistance to help flex the muscles, by employing various training methods like super sets, forced reps, pyramid systems and periodization.
This essay thus seeks to discuss and distinguish the above advanced training methods drawing the pros and cons of each method and their applicability, in order to provide a better understanding of each.
Supersets are basically one of the advanced training methods that involve performing two exercises in a row without any rest or relaxation between the two sets. Supersets are basically body building method unlike other conventional methods like straight sets.
The lack of rest in between the sets, poses a major disadvantage for this method in that it cannot be used effectively in building and developing power or strength. ( Venuto, 2008) the inability to develop power or strength comes as a result of the fact that the method does not allow for time for rest, thus this reduces the amount of weight that one can handle with the trainees strength declining with every additional superset
Borrowing from the saying that every coin has got two sides, supersets have got numerous advantages as well in that they help save time considerably, in that no much time is spent n relaxation in between the sets. Supersets just as the forced reps also help in increasing intensity of training that in the long run would enable the trainee develop muscles faster.
According to (Venuto, 2008) Supersets also help in reducing injuries while training. This is due to the fact that the sets are continuous; the muscles get overloaded and thus generate higher intensity without necessarily having to increase the weights.
In addition it important to explain the three major categories of supersets which include: same muscle group supersets which involve combining different exercises for a given muscle, the second type of superset is the Antagonistic muscle groups that derived its name from the antagonistic effect that results from pairing the two muscles enabling one to rest as the other is workig.
Ffinally the last category of supersets is the staggered sets which involve combining unrelated muscles with minor and major muscles thus training continuously. (Venuto, 2008)
The other method of advanced training is the periodization method which can be described as the changing of volume and intensity in a phased manner to stimulate gains and give room for recovery. Under this method the volume of training equipment is reduced during training while on the other hand the intensity is increased.
(Cipriani,1997)further stipulates that periodization has the advantage of bringing variations in the training that elevates development of more strength and muscles, while at the same time helping in controlling if not eradicating over training.
Periodization basically helps bring planning into training for bodybuilders in that one would be able to properly allocate his training time evenly thought the period available for instance one year thus avoiding the temptation of training all through that is always brought by the desire to achieve fast results.
Periodization thus ensures balance in training allowing for both intensive and low training that balances well with the body that needs rest after an intensive phase thus reverting to less intensive training-low phase. (Cipriani, 1997)
In order to accrue the full benefits of periodization a bodybuilder must be patient and self disciplined to follow the plan or schedule of training. It’s recommended that body builders basically need to use an approximate period of 1 year with the first half being the progressive resistance phase.
As the name implies the trainee should start with light weights in the early periods of the phase and progressively or gradually add on weight until he/she reaches the current maximum weight after which the increase in reps would come weekly incorporated with rest intervals in between the sets. (Cipriani, 1997)
This brings out one major difference between periodization and supersets in that where as supersets do not allow for relaxation the former does and is more planned than the latter.
The other method of advanced training method is the pyramid training method that operates under the principle of developing the muscles by increasing the amount of muscular contraction when performing the various sets in an exercise. In this method the weight is varied over different sets for instance five sets of 14, 12, 8, 12 and 14 reps would involve performing the first two sets with light to gradually medium weight as a warm up to the muscles.
The work set which is also the middle set would involve the use of the heaviest weight to affirm the muscles with the drop sets which are lighter being used to fatigue the muscles further.(Delavier,2001) This system thus incorporates both the volume and intensity and thus popular with body builders.
The major disadvantage with this technique is its inflexibility of use by different levels of bodybuilders in that with a full pyramid the weights may be too much for a starter to handle.
Equally another advance training method is the Forced reps which are repetitions performed after a muscle failure and the trainee feels exhausted and cannot hold up the weight any more or perform any other repetition effectively. At this juncture the trainers always assist by helping in spotting the trainee.
The major advantage of this method is that with good exercises forced reps can actually be performed without necessarily having a spotter or training partner for instance with one arm having strong bicep curls the remaining arm can as well be used in helping the arm that is being trained.(Hatfield,1993)
Having distinguished and discussed the major advanced training methods in detail, it’s also important to conclude by highlighting the benefits of training in general in that today’s world is characterized by more and more people getting treatments for problems they would keep at bay by just remaining fit through training and eating well, Training basically helps develop strong muscular strength, appearance as well as improving ones breathing process.
Thus being an important aspect of human life.
Body metabolic rate on the other hand increases with the increase in muscular mass, which helps in burning fat thus preventing obesity. (Runacres, 2000)Weight training also guarantees other benefits in that constant training enhances good posture and in the process reducing injuries that always occur from everyday’s activities.
All this said than done, proper training cannot work in isolation .It basically has to be coupled up with good nutrition, where in this case good nutrition meaning a balanced diet with a bias in proteins and carbohydrates to help develop the body cells and provide sufficient energy respectively.
In my opinion I would recommend that the trainees follow the trainer’s instructions in order to achieve results in the various training methods being used to be successful.
Cipriani, J. (2007) Periodization. Retrieved on 11th September 2008, from
Delavier, F. (2001) Strength training anatomy, human kinetic publishers.
Hatfield, F. (1993) Hardcore body building: scientific approach, Mc Graw-hill
Runacres,A.(2000)Advanced training strategies. Retrieved on, 11th September. From
Venuto,T,(2008)How to build more muscles in less time with supersets. Retrieved
September 10th 2008 from: http://www.fitfaq.com/supersets.html