Continuously increasing weight is often seen as the only way to get the most out of your training plan.
We’re here to tell you that’s not the case.
In many ways, the following methods can actually be more effective and yield better muscle building results before increasing weight.
1. Slow your reps down – taking your time to be in control of every inch of a movement is a fantastic way to make any exercise more challenging. Not only does this increase time under tension (an important component of muscle building), but it also encourages you to spend more time in ranges the movement normally which are normally the more difficult.
2. Pause before each change of direction – closely related to the above point. Putting the brakes on momentum is not only safer for joint health but it also makes muscle tissue work harder.
3. Add in partial repetitions – this method of increasing intensity might not be suitable for all exercises, however when it works… it works.
Once your full range of motion is exhausted, shorten it down to the first half/third and carry out as many partial reps as possible. Make sure you differentiate full reps and partial reps in your training log.
4. Use a spotter – have someone watch over your set and provide the extra force you need to increase your rep count.
5. Reduce the weight – (often called a drop set) -once you’ve completely fatigued with your starting weight, reduce the load by 30-40% and keep going.
6. Improve your mind muscle connection – This is probably the most over looked form of intensification… Take your time to focus on which muscles are working, making each reps intention conscious & deliberate. This will not only make any movement harder, but it should also improve the quality of your reps and exercise execution.