Tri Sets are a tried and tested method that has stood the test of time in the health and fitness industry for good reason.

They allow the trainee to perform more work in less time making, the program dense while increasing the time under tension on the given muscle group. This, therefore, provides the trainee with a Hypertrophy and Fat Loss response through muscle tension, damage & cell swelling and lactate.

What are the parameters for a Tri Set?

  • Exercises: 3 Agonists in succession
  • Sets: 3-5
  • Reps: 8-25
  • Tempo’s: 5010, 4010, 3010, 2010
  • Rest: 120-180
  • Total TUT: 120-180

What are some important considerations for Tri Set?

  • Exercise selection (Multi or Single-Joint)
  • Grip variation (Pronated, Neutral, Supinated, Close. Mid, Wide etc…)
  • Stance variations (Narrow, Mid, Wide, High, Low, Feet in, Feet Out etc…)
  • A position of Flexion (Mid Range, Stretch or Peak Contraction)

Below is an example of an Arms routine for Hypertrophy taking into account the considerations, which would allow the trainee to target all muscle fibres for the elbow flexors

A1: Curl – Scott – Close Grip – Semi Pronated w EZ Bar
4 x 6-8 – T:4010 – R:15
A2: Curl – 60* Incline – Neutral Grip
4 x 8-10 – T:3010 – R:15
A3: Curl – 45* Prone – Supinating Grip w Dumbbells
4 x 10-12 – T:3010 – R:180
Total TUT: 128

When and how do you periodise a Tri Set Method for Hypertrophy and Fat Loss?

When it comes to periodisation for Hypertrophy & Fat Loss Macrocycles different rules apply. I learnt the concept of Undulating Periodisation from Stephane Cazeault, owner of Kilo Strength Society in Huntington Beach California when I travelled and learned from him in February and August this year.

In a Hypertrophy Macrocycle, you would use a Tri Set Method in an Accumulation phase, where the unit of measurement is Volume. In this example your training split would be specific, such as Chest/ Back, Quad/ Posterior Chain, Arms/ Shoulders etc…

Accumulation 1: Giant Set
Intensification 1: 5 x 5-7
Accumulation 2: Tri Set
Intensification 2: 7,7,5,5,3,3

In a Fat Loss Macrocycle, you would use a Tri Set Method in an Intensification phase, where the unit of measurement is also Volume. In this example, your training split could be Quad/ Back, Posterior Chain/ Chest etc…

Accumulation 1: GBC 1
Intensification 1: Tri-Sets
Accumulation 2: GBC
Intensification 2: Giant Set

You can see with the examples above that a Tri Set Method should be programmed specifically to the client’s goal (Hypertrophy or Fat Loss) and depending on that goal used at completely different times within the Macrocycle.

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