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The 28 Method: New Math For Major Muscle Gains

The 21s drill uses three variations (7 reps each) of a classic lift, but what do you do when three variations aren't enough? Well, you try four. This is the 28 method.

Variations on exercise technique and reps shock the human musculature system. That's why we should switch routines, reps, and lifting order regularly. The 21s method for biceps shocked my system to a life-changing extreme, but the gains leveled off. Like any responsible bodybuilder, I made a slight change to a proven regimen to create variation and increase my gains.

You know the 21s drill - grab an EZ-Curl bar, perform seven reps going halfway up, seven more halfway down, and then finish it with seven full reps.

Well, I have something even better for you to tackle.

Like everyone else in lifting history, I took part in this great shock method, but I also started applying it to other muscle groups beyond my biceps. At a certain point, my body got used to this method and this technique. Then it no longer had the same impact. From that stagnation, my "28 method" was born; it takes 21s to an entirely different level.

If you're like me and find something missing when you do 21s, the "28 method" is certainly a step up. It might be precisely what you're looking for.

So, what exactly is the "28 method?"

Well, it's not complicated, but it just goes a step farther than doing 21s. To start, you do seven regular full reps with whatever weight you're using and whatever exercises you're performing.

The next step, though, is the most intense. With your muscles already fatigued, do seven slow reps. Slow in this case applies to both the eccentric and concentric part of the movement.

In your head, do a 5-count down and then another 5-count up, slowly lowering the weight and then slowly moving the weight back up. Believe me, this is the part that burns like crazy. From here, finish out the work with seven reps going halfway down with the movement, and another seven reps going halfway up - much like 21s.

So, it goes like this: Seven full reps, seven slow reps, seven reps at the top half of the movement, and then seven final reps at the bottom half of the movement, giving you 28 shirt-splitting reps.

Try three sets for each exercise and pick three exercises for a particular muscle group. Get ready for your muscles to scream in pain.

With just two minutes of rest between sets and the intense workload of the "28 method," you will obviously use significantly less weight for the movement.

But don't worry, this method works.

Almost immediately, you will see an increase in muscle fullness. Your pump will be out of this world. It might not be the backbone of your training program, but you won't find a much better change of pace than the "28 method." Use it now and again for a couple of weeks at a time, and results will follow.

Your tighter-fitting shirts will be proof of that.

Sample Workout:

A workout using the "28 method" for your chest and triceps would look like this, but you can apply this method any muscle group

Chest/Triceps
  • Flat Barbell Bench Flat Barbell Bench

    Flat Barbell Bench

    3 sets of 28 reps: 7 regular reps, 7 slow reps, 7 reps going halfway down (from lockout), 7 reps going halfway up (from chest)
  • Incline Dumbbell Press Incline Dumbbell Press

    Incline Dumbbell Press

    3 sets of 28 reps: 7 regular reps, 7 slow reps, 7 reps going halfway down (from lockout), 7 reps going halfway up (from chest)
  • Chest Fly Machine Chest Fly Machine

    Chest Fly Machine

    3 sets of 28 reps: 7 regular reps, 7 slow reps, 7 reps going halfway back, 7 reps going halfway up
  • Skull Crushers Skull Crushers

    Skull Crushers

    3 sets of 28 reps: 7 regular reps, 7 slow reps, 7 reps going halfway down (from lockout), 7 reps going halfway up (from head)
  • Dips Dips

    Dips

    3 sets of 28 reps: 7 regular reps, 7 slow reps, 7 reps going halfway down (from lockout), 7 reps going halfway up (from bottom)

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About The Author

Cory Gregory co-founded MusclePharm. As Executive Vice President of Business Development, Gregory works closely with all of the world-class athletes.

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Vv BREAKDOWN vV

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Vv BREAKDOWN vV

I can't wait to try this!

Article Rated:
Dec 14, 2011 8:12pm | report
 
applecore86y

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applecore86y

its wonderful. I haven't been focusing on my arms lately just keeping them tone. I jumped back into hitting my arms with this, couldn't move them for four days

May 14, 2012 10:54am | report
armen

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armen

Not bad.

Dec 14, 2011 9:24pm | report
 
willguy9

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willguy9

sounds fun

Dec 14, 2011 10:19pm | report
 
wswz123

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wswz123

Hope it works!

Dec 15, 2011 6:31am | report
 
newyorkerrrr

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newyorkerrrr

That's actually the method used in the biceps track in Les Mills Body Pump. IMO, this works muscle endurance and does not add much muscle mass.

Dec 15, 2011 7:26am | report
 
byrnes1985

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byrnes1985

looks good!

Dec 15, 2011 8:32am | report
 
420Bandit

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420Bandit

Looks awesome, I'm going to add this to my routine in January 12!

Dec 15, 2011 9:15am | report
 
Kelgogi

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Kelgogi

Just what I needed for my new split. I've always believed in slow concentric movements as it seems we have a significant amount of 'negative' movement left in us in most routines, so this should be incredible.

Dec 15, 2011 11:03am | report
 
MMAgrappler7

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MMAgrappler7

that'd be great for sarcoplasmic hypertrophy but it's not dry muscle gains...

Dec 15, 2011 11:50am | report
 
XxFiTLiFexX

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XxFiTLiFexX

wow sounds good!! deff trying this sometime!

Dec 15, 2011 6:54pm | report
 
dvc123

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dvc123

I think this would be a perfect routine to burn fat and expose a more defined muscle.
Pre competition workout.

For me, I want to gain more muscle mass.
Not sure this is what I need at my body stage just yet.

Article Rated:
Dec 15, 2011 9:21pm | report
 
danemgarner

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danemgarner

I use to do the 21 method back in high school. This seems fun and I'm stoked to throw it into the routine next week!

Dec 16, 2011 9:42am | report
 
ironraiser79

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ironraiser79

Interesting! Not sure i'd use it on a heavy compound exercise but definitely on a shaping/isolation movement

Dec 16, 2011 12:36pm | report
 
mysticalphoenix

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mysticalphoenix

Will try today for bices

Dec 17, 2011 3:36am | report
 
spillai

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spillai

Cant wait to try this from Jan 1st

Dec 17, 2011 11:52am | report
 
deadboy007

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deadboy007

sounds painful D:!

Dec 17, 2011 1:28pm | report
 
Devilman37

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Devilman37

I cant imagine all the pains at the finsihing reps... Your muscle will be bursts if you do it strictly....

Dec 17, 2011 2:00pm | report
mutie

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mutie

good for cut

Dec 18, 2011 1:21pm | report
GetJack3d420

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GetJack3d420

No pain no gain brah

Dec 18, 2011 7:32pm | report
GetJack3d420

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GetJack3d420

.Up yup

Dec 18, 2011 7:35pm | report
CARRASCO50

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CARRASCO50

killer....

Dec 19, 2011 12:04am | report
MattClooten

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MattClooten

I'm not sure why somebody would do partials before full reps but if you're trying to really put some muscle on, you should go to fatigue with super slow reps then hit partials or full eccentric reps.

Dec 19, 2011 10:02am | report
junooni

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junooni

definately will give it a shot.

Dec 21, 2011 3:05pm | report
ramsgoldberg61

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ramsgoldberg61

trying this out today!

Dec 29, 2011 1:37pm | report
Showing 1 - 25 of 80 Comments

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