Weight training and strength training both revolve around building up muscle to improve your performance. That’s the bottom line. How you go about doing it, however, is a very different story, and that's where things like drop sets come in.

So many of us get caught up in doing the same workouts on the same days every week with no changes, and it gets a little dull. Instead of sticking to your standard 5x5 sets, or even 4x12, there are some cool ways to change the game. In this case, they’re drops sets.

It’s possibly the best way to have a significant impact on your muscles and on your training mentality. They are a little tiring and they will push you to your limits, but the benefits are well worth the extra work. But what are they and how are they so different?

What drop sets are

Woman performing squat with a light barbell

We’ll start with a quick overview of what drop sets are. The idea focuses on lifting a weight that you may be used to or that you can do if you really push yourself. The difference is that, instead of sticking with it for 4 or 5 sets, you change it. Push yourself to near failure with your highest weight and stop just before. Lower the weight and do it again. And then do it again, and again… and again. You can go as low as you need to, but 4-5 times should be more than enough!

What they do

The general idea behind the drop set training style is that it can push you past the limits that usually stop you in your tracks. When you use a certain weight for a certain number of sets, it usually ends in reaching the point where your muscles just can’t move the weight. That’s all well and good, but you can push past it! Using a lower weight means that you can get more reps out of your workout and they’re pushing your muscles further and harder than ever before.

How they work

Man bench pressing a barbell

Pushing past your limits is by no means an easy feat, but these set styles are a great way to do it. As you change up the weights that you’re using, you’re adding in a new kind of stress that your muscles aren’t adjusted to. It’s a great way to push through a plateau. Plus, it gives you a huge boost as you overload your muscles as much as you possibly can do. You’re tearing muscle fibres in ways that you aren’t used to, and as you recover and repair, you’ll build up more muscle than you usually do. This is why it’s so ideal as a mass builder. Your muscle volume will definitely increase if you master them.

Why you should consider drop sets

Knowing what they are and how they work is, of course, essential information. But you also need to make sure that you stop and think about why you need them. Your training might be going amazingly, or it could be at a standstill. No matter where you are, adding variation into your workouts is one of the best decisions that you could make. Adding set styles especially, like drop sets, is one of the best ways you can push your body to new heights and see benefits you didn’t know existed.

Getting into a routine is so, so easy - and so hard to get out of in the long run. These can save your mentality as well as your progression, so change things up!

For more information about drop sets, check out our video on youtube here:

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If you experience dizziness, nausea, chest pain, or any other abnormal symptoms, stop the workout at once and consult a physician or doctor immediately.