Ideal Repetition Speed and Rest Periods For Muscle
There are many thing you can and should do to build muscle more effectively than you are currently. One of the
most overlooked methods of increasing intensity is your repetition speed and the amount of rest you take in between
Both of these factors should be taken into consideration if you want to build muscle and speed up your
In this article I will discuss what is meant by repetition speed and rest periods, how adjusting these can
impact your workout, when you should change them, and give you some examples so that you can incorporate them into
First, it is important to mention that these two factors are both use to either increase or decrease intensity.
Although there are many other ways to increase intensity during your workout, these two - repetition speed and rest
time, are especially important for muscle building.
Ideally, you should aim to increase your intensity every workout. This helps to keep your body guessing and
prevents it from adapting to the same old movements, weights, rest time, and speed.
Changing your weight training intensity is critical when you reach a
muscle growth plateau - or a period in which you see no progress or can’t increase the weight that you lift.
During a plateau you should try altering your rest periods or repetition speed.
Your rest periods while lifting have an enormous impact on muscle building. Of course, they will also depend on
your goals and preferences, so not everyone will choose to rest at the same amount of time for muscle building.
If your goal is power and strength and you are lifting very heavy weights (close to your one or five rep max),
you will probably find that you need around 2-3 minutes to recover between sets. If you are training for endurance
(10-12 repetitions), your rest will probably be reduced to 1-2 minutes.
As you can see, your rest time depends on how fast your body recovers and what you are training for. When your
progress begins to stall, try to increase your rest time between sets. This will allow you to lift more weight for
more repetitions during the next set which in turn will help you move more volume.
Conversely, if you want to get a quick workout in and really tax your muscles you can try reducing the amount of
rest between sets. Play around with your rest time and try to find what works for you.
Your repetition speed, or tempo, can dramatically effect your progress. When first learning to lift weights, you
were probably taught to lift and lower the weight in a slow and controlled manner - around 2 seconds for each the
concentric movements and the eccentric.
Many people don’t realize that you can alter this speed to increase intensity. For example, the next time you
are bench pressing, try lifting the weight as slow as possible and lowering it as slow as possible. Odds are, you
won’t be able to get the same number of reps as you could before.
Changing your repetition speed increases the amount of time you lift and lower a weight, which can help build
muscle extremely fast. Hopefully these few tips have given you some great ideas for your next workout session!