Iron Man September 2009 Excerpt: 10 Drop Set Tactics!
If I had to pick just one high-intensity technique for building muscle, it would be drop sets. In my opinion, they're the best high-intensity-bodybuilding technique of all time. Read on to find out why...
10 Ways To Use The Best High-Intensity Techniques Of All Time!
I've been bodybuilding for nearly 20 years, and during that time I've had the opportunity to experiment with dozens, if not hundreds, of high-intensity-training methods, including supersets, giant sets, preexhaustion, negatives, partials, static holds, continuous tension, peak contraction, five sets of five, eight sets of eight and 21s, just to name a few.
If I had to pick just one high-intensity technique to use for building muscle, it would be drop sets. That's right. In my opinion, they're the best high-intensity-bodybuilding technique of all time. Read on to find out why and to learn 10 ways to use drop sets for some of the most amazing muscle growth you've ever experienced.
What Are Drop Sets, And Who Invented Them?
A drop set is the simple technique in which you perform a set of any exercise to failure or just short of failure, then drop some weight and continue for more repetitions with the reduced poundage. According to Arnold's original Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding, the drop set method was "discovered" in 1947 by Henry Atkins, editor of Body Culture magazine.
Atkins called it the "multipoundage system." This muscle-blasting technique has gone by many different names, including breakdowns, descending sets, triple-drops, down the rack, strip sets and the stripping technique.
Why Do Bodybuilders Love Drop Sets?
Bodybuilders are unique among athletes because they're concerned purely with cosmetic improvements and not athletic performance. Drop sets are decidedly geared toward increasing muscle size. You don't see a lot of football players, sprinters or other athletes using them, because drop sets are not conducive to strength, power or speed gains.
In fact, most athletes want strength and power without bulk, so drop sets are usually nixed. If pure mass is what you're after, however, drop sets are ideal.
Creative Drop Set Methods
Drop sets were a favorite of Arnold Schwarzenegger's. Thanks to Arnold's popularizing them, it's common in any gym today to see even recreational lifters doing barbell curl "stripping sets," as he liked to call them. That method only scratches the surface of the many ways in which drop sets can be used. I've discovered dozens of creative variations. IM
Get the entire article and all 10 variations to the drop set in the September Issue of Iron Man Magazine.