Weight Training, Routines and More

The Iron Game

December 4th, 2009 at 1:18 am

Take Your Training To The Next Level With “Pulse Reps!”

Want to take your workouts to another level? Well, there is a way to increase the stress level and benefit of certain exercises within your program by incorporating short 2” to 4” partial movements after you have completed your target number of regular full range reps per set. As a reminder, you’ve heard me say that this great activity, weight training is all about stress and adaptation to that stress. Your objective is to tear down your muscle tissue as much as possible, then allow it to recover through rest and nutrition. Pulse reps is another technique that you can use to maximize the benefit of your training.

Pulse reps, some people call them “burns”, are a little different than forced reps. Forced reps imply performing additional full range reps of an exercise with the assistance of a spotter or your training partner. During these reps you are truly “dwelling in the house of pain.” You need their help to successfully do the reps. Pulse reps or burns are partial movements done entirely by you, with no spotter assistance except when you need to rack the weight at the conclusion of your set.

Both pulse and forced reps are performed after you have successfully completed your normal number of reps per set. CAUTION: These should not be done when you are doing heavy doubles or heavy single rep sets! Because of the potential threat of injury, avoid doing them when you are doing low rep heavy sets. They should only be used when you are performing sets with a rep range of between 6 to 10 or more. Additionally, this training technique only applies to certain exercises. Remember, your objective is to completely tear down your muscle tissue by maximizing the intensity of your training!

Here’s an example on how you can use pulse or burn reps: After doing incline barbell presses for 8 reps, you perform an additional 6 reps by pressing the bar off your chest-up for 2” to 4” only. These reps are done entirely by you and the bar only moves a distance of 2” to 4” from the starting position. After doing these for a couple of sets you will quickly realize that your spotter will need to assist you in racking the weight! Here is my list of exercises that work for pulse or burn reps:

• Bench presses – both barbell and dumbbell
• Incline presses – both barbell and dumbbell
• Military presses – both in front and behind the neck barbell only
• Preacher curls – both barbell and dumbbell
• Close grip and decline barbell presses
• Tricep press downs on a cable machine

Exercises that don’t work for pulse or burn reps:

• Deadlifts
• Heavy pulls or shrugs in a power rack
• Squats
• Bent over barbell rows
• T-bar rows
• Any fly or lateral dumbbell exercise

Think of pulse reps as another technique that you can use while doing certain exercises that can benefit you by maximizing the intensity!

It takes heart to train hard! Good training!

To succeed… You need to find something to hold on to, something to motivate you, something to inspire you.-Tony Dorsett

Gary Lillvis

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