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How many reps should you do if your goal is to increase muscle mass?

I don’t know about you but I’m starting to notice the darker nights creeping in. It’s getting closer to ‘bulking’ season so here’s a quick post for some if you looking to add some muscle mass!

There’s a lot of contradicting material out there when it comes to hypertrophy gains. How much size you truly put on can come down to gender and genetics but there’s also what you do in the gym the helps (as well as eating a ton of calories, which is a completely different post).

In college back in the day, it was always 1-6 reps for ‘Power’, 8-12 reps for ‘Hypertrophy’ and 12-15 for ‘Endurance’ (7 reps was a mystery).

The problem with the 8-12 for some exercises, especially the ‘compound’ exercises (exercises that require multiple joint movements and muscles such as squats, presses and rows) is that when people take 8-12 reps, I find that they usually go too light on their weights and therefore not recruiting enough muscle fibres.

For the earlier exercises in your workout, try go heavier and aim for at least 6 reps. Go until you’re 1-2 reps away from complete failure and give yourself a longer recovery on your first few main exercises.

training mass size gains goals muscle time under tension growth

Also, don’t rush through your reps. Slow it down to get more tension and throw in some eccentric training, where you’re lowering the weights for 4-5 seconds, every now and then.

For shoulders and arms, up to 12 reps can be good for size as well.