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After some time in training, muscles adapt to the training. The muscles will thus need an increase in the intensity for continued results and continued increase in muscles size, endurance, and strength. For the continued results, a person should come up with more innovative ways of increasing the intensity of the workouts. Experts have come up with various advanced training methods. A person can choose various advanced training methods depending on the aim of training. The training methods include supersets, forced reps, pyramid system, and periodization (Fahley, 2007). The aim of this paper is to analyze the four advanced training methods. The paper will compare and contrast the four training methods giving the perceived pros and cons of the each one of the methods.
The superset method of training involves doing two different exercises following each other. There is no rest between the two exercises. The two exercises do not need to be similar exercises. The person training can even do an exercise of strength then a cardio exercise. Superset training method idea is doing an exercise then doing another different exercise instead of taking a rest and taking another set of exercise. The person training should then alternate the two different exercises for the number of set he or she desires (Mark, 2007).
Superset training method offers many benefits. One of the benefits of supersets is saving time. Doing two different exercises without a rest between them makes workouts become shorter. The method is also more efficient than others are. The second benefit that supersets offer is increasing the intensity of workouts. Choosing a different exercise for the same function increases the intensity of the workout. For example, if a person is working out a muscle with a certain exercise, taking a different exercise for the same muscle increases the intensity of the workout. Supersets allow for muscle overloading without using weights. If a person chooses to work out a muscle with a proper different exercise after another, he or she can overload the muscles without the use of heavy weights. Overloading the muscles without using weights is beneficial to people without spotters. For the people who are not willing to lift heavy weights, it is also a good alternative.Supersets make training become interesting and pose a greater challenge to the trainee(Mark, 2007).
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Supersets yields less strength and power as compared to other advanced training methods. Leaving no rest between the exercises leaves the trainee with less strength for muscles to lift weights. The inability of the muscles to lift much weight due to lack of rest reduce the ability of the muscles to generate strength for each set(Mark, 2007).
Forced repetition training method is a muscle training method that involves using a spotter to reduce the weights a trainee is lifting. Forced reps method involves subjecting a muscle to a set of an exercise as normal until the muscle achieves a complete drain. The spotter then moves in for slight lifting of the bar in order to decrease the overall weight subjected to the muscle. The trainee then continues with the repetitions with the lighter weight until fatigue of the muscles. The spotter then reduces the weight further to allow for more forced reps (Fletcher, 2008).
The method is better in building up overall strength as compared to the superset method of training. The repetitions allows for maximum loading at different times in respect to exhaustion. The weight that a person subjects to the muscle depends on the exhaustion of the muscles. Therefore, a muscle will lift the maximum amount of weight it can. The method is an excellent way for muscle overloading. The lifting of weights by the muscles allows for muscle overloading. Decreasing of weight after exhaustion of the muscles makes the method more efficient in overloading of the muscles than other training methods. Forced reps increase the intensity of workouts too. Not resting after exhaustion but instead reducing the weights increase the intensity of a workout. Forced reps offers the muscles a way of gaining a new growth if the muscles are in a plateau. Regular training on the same method makes the muscles adapt to it hence making them go on a plateau. The increased intensity of the muscles shocks the muscles leading to a new growth(Fletcher, 2008).
The disadvantage of the above method is that it requires a spotter, which is unavailable many times. The method is not as efficient as the superset method when the trainee has limited time. The training method involves training the muscles to exhaustion then slightly decreasing the weights subjected to the muscle. The repetitions consume a lot of time therefore, not suitable for persons with limited time. Another disadvantage of the training method is that the one cannot know the amount of weight the spotter reduces. The spotter can reduce more weight or less weight than it is required. The method leads to more stress on the muscles and can lead to overstress of the same and hence overtraining. Therefore, the method is not a good long-term exercising method(Fletcher, 2008).
Pyramid system as an advanced training method involving increasing weight of each set while decreasing repetitions. A variation of the pyramid method is reducing the weight while increasing the repetitions in each set. The standard pyramid system method involves starting the first set with about eight repetitions at sixty percent of the maximum capacity of the muscles. For the next three sets, the number of the repetitions decreases by two and the weight increase by ten percent. For example, if the maximum weight capacity of the muscle a person is exercising is a hundred pounds, the person should start the first set with sixty pounds and eight repetitions. For the second set, the weight should be seventy pounds and six repetitions. For the third set, the weight should be eighty pound, and repetitions should be four. For the fourth and final set, the weights should be at ninety pounds and two repetitions. The method allows a person to exercise towards the maximum muscle capacity lift and back to smaller amounts. The method forms a pyramid of weights during the workout(Arnold, 1999).
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The pyramid system is most efficient than all other methods in making the muscles stronger and bigger. The method works out and exhausts all the muscle fibers in the body hence leading to bigger and stronger muscles in a short time. The method is an efficient way of increasing the intensity of exercise. Increasing the weights and reducing the repetitions subject the muscles to more exhaustion leading to the increase in the intensity of the workouts. The pyramid offers a great way of developing muscles where a person will start with a lightweight that ensures he or she does not pull a muscle then ending up with a large weight that enables the muscle to gain strength(Arnold, 1999).
The disadvantage of the pyramid system method is that it consumes a lot of time. The method requires at least four sets to be complete, with each of the sets having a number of repetitions. A person with less time and adopts the training method will end up using a poor technique be rushing. A poor technique of pyramiding leads to damage of the muscles in terms of strength. The method also denies the trainee the chance to be great with a certain number of repetitions. A person’s training aim is specific for either low repetitions or high repetitions. For example, an athlete training for marathon requires being good at high repetitions and an athlete for a hundred meter sprint requires being good at low repetitions. The training method denies the trainees the chance to be good with either low or high reps (Arnold, 1999).
Periodization advanced method of training involves changing of the program of training at regular intervals. The program change can vary in many ways. A person can change the number of repetitions he or she takes per set, the amount of resistance he or she uses, the time of rest that he or she takes between sets, training sessions, or exercises, the exercises’ order, the type of the exercises, or the speed of completion of the exercise. A person will take a different style for a specified period and then take up another style for some other time. The method usually involves drawing up a timetable of the training techniques to ensure efficient periodization. The method incorporates all the other advanced training methods(Anderson, 2009).
The periodization method allows for the full body recovery. Periodization involves less training at some period; during the less training period, the body will recover fully. There is more intense training at some periods mostly when it is required. The method makes the training become more interesting than all the other training methods. Mixing the training techniques ensures that the trainees do not get bored with the same routine of training. The training method has less injuries risks as it focuses on long-term gains. The method enjoys the benefits of the other training methods as it incorporates them at one time or another(Anderson, 2009).
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The method is not suitable for people requiring gaining muscle strength and growth within a short time. A poor choice of the training program can lead to poor results of training. The training method, unlike other training methods, require expertise in generating the program for the work out as each person would require a different program to receive the benefits (Anderson, 2009).
The advanced training methods above would help in increasing the intensity of workouts. Each of them has pros and cons. determining the best training method will lie on the purpose of training, the time requirement, and the facilities available.