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... A further issue is the interpretation of the application of training to MF when studies have utilized multiple set RT protocols. 39 It may have been reported that participants trained to MF in all sets. Yet, when combined with specific repetition range recommendations, it has been shown that loading and/or rest intervals require manipulation from set to set in order to maintain individual ability to achieve the specified repetition range due to fatigue from earlier sets. ...
...  Unless described carefully, it is often difficult to interpret whether participants trained to MF or not and, if not, the proximity to MF they achieved. 39 This point bears important implications regarding both control of effort in addition to the relative loadings being used, which researchers and practitioners should consider. Ultimately, it is important that clear terms and careful definitions be used when reporting on RT interventions if we are to gain the greatest understanding of the application of differing manipulations of RT variables. ...
Prior resistance training (RT) recommendations and position stands have discussed variables that can be manipulated when producing RT interventions. However, one variable that has received little discussion is set end points (i.e. the end point of a set of repetitions). Set end points in RT are often considered to be proximity to momentary failure and are thought to be a primary variable determining effort in RT. Further, there has been ambiguity in use and definition of terminology that has created issues in interpretation of research findings. The purpose of this paper is to: 1) provide an overview of the ambiguity in historical terminology around set end points; 2) propose a clearer set of definitions related to set end points; and 3) highlight the issues created by poor terminology and definitions. It is hoped this might permit greater clarity in reporting, interpretation, and application of RT interventions for researchers and practitioners.
The study's purpose was to compare the response of performing 1, 3 and 5-sets on measures of performance and muscle hypertrophy. Forty eight men, with no weight training experience, were randomly assigned to one of three training groups, 1-SET, 3-SETS, 5-SETS, or control group (CG). All training groups performed three resistance training sessions per week for six months. The 5RM for all training groups increased in the bench press (BP), front lat pull down (LPD), shoulder press (SP) and leg press (LP) (p≤0.05), with the 5RM increases in the BP and LPD being significantly greater for 5-SETS compared to the other training groups (p ≤ 0.05). BP 20RM in the 3- and 5-SETS groups significantly increased with the increase being significantly greater than the 1-SET group and the 5-SETS group increase being significantly greater than the 3-SETS group (p≤0.05). LP 20RM increased in all training groups (p≤0.05), with the 5-SETS group showing a significantly greater increase than the 1-SET group (p≤0.05). The 3- and 5-SETS groups significantly increased elbow flexor muscle thickness (MT) with the 5-SETS increase being significantly greater than the other two training groups (p≤0.05). The 5-SETS group significantly increased elbow extensor MT with the increase being significantly greater than the other training groups (p≤0.05). All training groups decreased percent body fat, increased fat free mass and vertical jump ability (p≤0.05), with no differences between groups. The results demonstrate a dose response for the number of sets per exercise and a superiority of multiple sets compared to a single set per exercise for strength gains, muscle endurance and upper arm muscle hypertrophy.
This study examined low volume resistance training (RT) in trained participants with and without advanced training methods.
Trained participants (RT experience 4+3 years) were randomised to groups performing single set RT;; ssRM (n = 21) performing repetitions to self--determined repetition maximum (RM), ssMMF (n = 30) performing repetitions to momentary muscular failure (MMF), and ssRP (n = 28) performing repetitions to self--determined RM using a rest pause (RP) method. Each performed supervised RT 2x/week for 10 weeks. Outcomes included maximal isometric strength and body composition using bioelectrical impedance analysis.
The ssRM group did not significantly improve in any outcome. The ssMMF and ssRP groups both significantly improved strength (p < 0.05). Magnitude of changes using effect size (ES) was examined between groups. Strength ES's were considered large for ssMMF (0.91 to 1.57) and ranging small to large for ssRP (0.42 to 1.06). Body composition data revealed significant improvements (p < 0.05) in muscle and fat mass and percentages for whole body, upper limbs and trunk for ssMMF, but only upper limbs for ssRP. Body composition ES's ranged moderate to large for ssMMF (0.56 to 1.27) and ranged small to moderate for ssRP (0.28 to 0.52). ssMMF also significantly improved (p < 0.05) total abdominal fat and increased intracellular water with moderate ES's (--0.62 and 0.56 respectively).
Training to self--determined RM is not efficacious for trained participants. Training to MMF produces greatest improvements in strength and body composition, however, RP style training does offer some benefit.
There has been considerable debate over the optimal number of sets per exercise to improve musculoskeletal strength during a resistance exercise program. The purpose of this study was to use hierarchical, random-effects meta-regression to compare the effects of single and multiple sets per exercise on dynamic strength. English-language studies comparing single with multiple sets per exercise, while controlling for other variables, were considered eligible for inclusion. The analysis comprised 92 effect sizes (ESs) nested within 30 treatment groups and 14 studies. Multiple sets were associated with a larger ES than a single set (difference = 0.26 +/- 0.05; confidence interval [CI]: 0.15, 0.37; p < 0.0001). In a dose-response model, 2 to 3 sets per exercise were associated with a significantly greater ES than 1 set (difference = 0.25 +/- 0.06; CI: 0.14, 0.37; p = 0.0001). There was no significant difference between 1 set per exercise and 4 to 6 sets per exercise (difference = 0.35 +/- 0.25; CI: -0.05, 0.74; p = 0.17) or between 2 to 3 sets per exercise and 4 to 6 sets per exercise (difference = 0.09 +/- 0.20; CI: -0.31, 0.50; p = 0.64). There were no interactions between set volume and training program duration, subject training status, or whether the upper or lower body was trained. Sensitivity analysis revealed no highly influential studies, and no evidence of publication bias was observed. In conclusion, 2 to 3 sets per exercise are associated with 46% greater strength gains than 1 set, in both trained and untrained subjects.
The purpose of this study was to determine the rate of recovery for recreational weight trainers between 2 sets of bench press to volitional exhaustion. Twenty-eight men performed 2 sets of the bench press at 75% of their previously determined 1 repetition maximum (1RM) to volitional exhaustion. Rest periods of 1, 3, or 5 minutes between sets were utilized on the 3 separate testing days. There was a significant decrease in the number of repetitions performed between the second sets at all rest periods. There were no significant differences in work performed (repetitions x weight) during the second set with the 3- and 5-minute rest periods, but the total work with a 1-minute rest period (1,389.1 +/- 529.9) was significantly less than both the 3- (1,494.9 +/- 451.0) and 5-minute (1,711.4 +/- 478.0) rest period. The data indicated that subjects were unable to fully recover between the first and second sets of maximal resistance exercise, regardless of the rest period. However, subjects were able to maintain a performance level of 8-12 repetitions and sustain the total work performed per set with as little as 3 minutes rest between sets.
SUMMARY In order to stimulate further adaptation toward specific training goals, progressive resistance training (RT) protocols are necessary. The optimal characteristics of strength-specific programs include the use of concentric (CON), eccentric (ECC), and isometric muscle actions and the performance of bilateral and unilateral single- and multiple-joint exercises. In addition, it is recommended that strength programs sequence exercises to optimize the preservation of exercise intensity (large before small muscle group exercises, multiple-joint exercises before single-joint exercises, and higher-intensity before lower-intensity exercises). For novice (untrained individuals with no RT experience or who have not trained for several years) training, it is recommended that loads correspond to a repetition range of an 8-12 repetition maximum (RM). For intermediate (individuals with approximately 6 months of consistent RT experience) to advanced (individuals with years of RT experience) training, it is recommended that individuals use a wider loading range from 1 to 12 RM in a periodized fashion with eventual emphasis on heavy loading (1-6 RM) using 3- to 5-min rest periods between sets performed at a moderate contraction velocity (1-2 s CON; 1-2 s ECC). When training at a specific RM load, it is recommended that 2-10% increase in load be applied when the individual can perform the current workload for one to two repetitions over the desired number. The recommendation for training frequency is 2-3 dIwkj1 for novice training, 3-4 dIwkj1 for intermediate training, and 4-5 dIwkj1 for advanced training. Similar program designs are recom- mended for hypertrophy training with respect to exercise selection and frequency. For loading, it is recommended that loads corresponding to 1-12 RM be used in periodized fashion with emphasis on the 6-12 RM zone using 1- to 2-min rest periods between sets at a moderate velocity. Higher volume, multiple-set programs are recommended for maximizing hypertrophy. Progression in power training entails two general loading strategies: 1) strength training and 2) use of light loads (0-60% of 1 RM for lower body exercises; 30-60% of 1 RM for upper body exercises) performed at a fast contraction velocity with 3-5 min of rest between sets for multiple sets per exercise (three to five sets). It is also recommended that emphasis be placed on multiple-joint exercises especially those involving the total body. For local muscular endurance training, it is recommended that light to moderate loads (40-60% of 1 RM) be performed for high repetitions (915) using short rest periods (G90 s). In the interpretation of this position stand as with prior ones, recommendations should be applied in context and should be contingent upon an individual's target goals, physical capacity, and training
The purpose of this series of investigations was to gain insight on resistance training in American football and address some of the myths. Many theories about resistance training have been proposed, yet there has been little if any research on some of these training philosophies. This series of studies represents an accumulation of data that helped to formulate a training approach. Rather than having a training philosophy, it might be more productive to have a training approach based on facts and critical monitoring of test variables representative of the physical development possible through strength and conditioning programs. It was demonstrated that football players are capable of multiple maximal efforts in resistance training and that the length of the rest period was a determining factor. In general, multiple sets and various periodized training programs were superior to single-set programs in the rate and magnitude of improvements in body composition, strength, local muscular endurance, and power. Such data indicate that for building programs in previously trained football players, multiple-set programs that provide variation are more appropriate.
(C) 1997 National Strength and Conditioning Association
The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of increasing training volume from one set to three sets on muscular strength, muscular endurance, and body composition in adult recreational weight lifters.
Forty-two adults (age 39.7 +/- 6.2 yr; 6.2 +/- 4.6 yr weight training experience) who had been performing one set using a nine-exercise resistance training circuit (RTC) for a minimum of 1 yr participated in this study. Subjects continued to perform one set (EX-1; N = 21) or performed three sets (EX-3; N = 21) of 8-12 repetitions to muscular failure 3 d x wk(-1) for 13 wk using RTC. One repetition maximums (1-RM) were measured for leg extension (LE), leg curl (LC), chest press (CP), overhead press (OP), and biceps curl (BC). Muscular endurance was evaluated for the CP and LE as the number of repetitions to failure using 75% of pretraining 1-RM. Body composition was estimated using the sum of seven skinfold measures.
Both groups significantly improved muscular endurance and 1 RM strength (EX-1 by: 13.6% LE; 9.2% LC; 11.9% CP; 8.7% OP; 8.3% BC; and EX-3 by: 12.8% LE; 12.0% LC; 13.5% CP; 12.4% OP; 10.3% BC) (P < 0.05). Both groups significantly improved lean body mass (P < 0.05). No significant differences between groups were found for any of the test variables (P > 0.05).
Both groups significantly improved muscular fitness and body composition as a result of the 13 wk of training. The results show that one-set programs are still effective even after a year of training and that increasing training volume over 13 wk does not lead to significantly greater improvements in fitness for adult recreational weight lifters.