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View Full Version : DL Sets of 1 effective for hypertrophy?



JT111
06-14-2011, 03:37 AM
Just wondering, i find i can lift a higher weight with sets of 1 & keep better form. Is this still effective?

Thanks all :)

NickAus
06-14-2011, 04:27 AM
Short answer no.

Dan Fanelli
06-14-2011, 08:11 AM
Short answer no.

Agreed, but the long answer would be yes. If thats all you are going to be doing then it wouldn't be that good. But if you follow the heavy deads up with something with more moderate reps, you'll get growth. And furthermore, the heavy deads will improve whatever else you do. Ex: if you were just going to dO rows for 8-12 reps, theyd be less effective than if you did the deads first. Also doing a heavy lift first opens up the possibility of exercises that might not be too effective for growth normally. Exs: pullthroughs, facepulls, stepups, etc.

But just about any time I'm training back, it starts with sets of 1-3 of deads, rackpulls, or maybe clean pulls.

mchicia1
06-14-2011, 08:29 AM
There is hardly anything better for pure growth than a high rep (10-12) set of heavy deadlifts.

Rugby Dad
06-14-2011, 09:30 AM
^agree, for bbing goals no need to do all out 1rep max
stay within 70-90% for reps of 8, you'll get crazy hypertrophy

JT111
06-14-2011, 09:38 AM
I always get bloody light headed on high rep deadlifts! Always got the impression that the heavier the better on that lift? Never thought high rep deads were great, ive obviously been missing out here!

Sean S
06-14-2011, 10:46 AM
If a perfect scenario, the higher reps DL's would likley result in more hypertrophy than doing singles. The key is to not let your technique break down too much with the higher reps. Getting sloppy at the end of a high rep DL set is a good way to injure yourself. I think that one way to get around this issue is to do moderate singles with very short rest periods in between (20-30 seconds). You could do a higher number of total reps (up to 15-20), but you would be able to reset and catch your breath between sets and thus be less likely to compromise your technique. You do have to keep a stopwatch or eye on the clock so you don't let the rest periods get too long at the end. If hypertrophy is your primary goal, I would pick a weight you could do for 20 singles with 30 seconds of rest in between with a moderately hard effort at the end of the set. Then add 5 lbs. a week. If your technique starts to break down significantly either end the DL's for the day or decrease the weight and start progressing back up over time.

ZAR-FIT
06-14-2011, 10:59 AM
everyone has got the right advice on this one.... Heavy weight, Higher Reps (8-12), KEEP FORM!!!!

Dan Fanelli
06-14-2011, 11:01 AM
Agree with Sean but I wouldn't necessarily go so long between reps. I would pretty much ALWAYS recommend performing dls as singles or clusters, but then play around with the total reps and density to get the effects you want. Having said that, I don't think the dl is a good "fatigue" exercise. If you are looking for high levels of fatigue, follow up the deadlift with other exercises that lend themselves more to fatigue. Unless of course you perform a sport like strongman where you need to be able to deadlift to fatigue

mchicia1
06-14-2011, 11:16 AM
Everyone is different, but I prefer to not reset the weight between reps. When I reset the weight, I tend to give up well before my muscles do..probably because the set takes a lot longer and I am spending more time breathing heavily. I really, really like touch and go deads. But I also know when my form is breaking down and when it is time to stop. I have good success with TnG...in terms of both size in my back and from a pure strength perspective.

chevelle2291
06-14-2011, 11:28 AM
ITT, we overthink and overanalyze.

The 8-12 reps Zar stated is a good rule. I wouldnt go much lower than 4 reps personally for muscular development, with 6 or above being the norm. No need to overthink this shit.

mchicia1
06-14-2011, 11:44 AM
ITT, we overthink and overanalyze.

The 8-12 reps Zar stated is a good rule. I wouldnt go much lower than 4 reps personally for muscular development, with 6 or above being the norm. No need to overthink this shit.

Yes very true..

Just find the best way (for you) to adequately tear down the muscle so it grows.

Kiff
06-14-2011, 02:01 PM
ITT, we overthink and overanalyze.

The 8-12 reps Zar stated is a good rule. I wouldnt go much lower than 4 reps personally for muscular development, with 6 or above being the norm. No need to overthink this shit.

Would hate to see you overthink things cheve :-)

chevelle2291
06-14-2011, 02:04 PM
Would hate to see you overthink things cheve :-)

LOL, indeed.

Off Road
06-14-2011, 02:49 PM
Would hate to see you overthink things cheve :-)
:evillaugh: Now THAT was funny :evillaugh:

JT111
06-14-2011, 02:52 PM
Thanks for all the replies guys! Clusters seem like an interesting idea for DL's but its easier kept simple :) Thanks all.

greemah
06-14-2011, 06:04 PM
I've always only done 1x5 once per week for deads. Over 400lb now. Should I be doing higher reps if my main goal is hypertrophy or is it good to stay in the strength range for this lift?

Dan Fanelli
06-14-2011, 06:53 PM
I've always only done 1x5 once per week for deads. Over 400lb now. Should I be doing higher reps if my main goal is hypertrophy or is it good to stay in the strength range for this lift?

Seems like everyone is different. I personally think performing them as singles or clusters reduces risk and would allow you to move more weight. But others have found that singles or clusters decrease their performance.

As long as you are progressing I dont see any reason to think you are doing it wrong.

mchicia1
06-14-2011, 07:38 PM
Thanks for all the replies guys! Clusters seem like an interesting idea for DL's but its easier kept simple :) Thanks all.

Clusters are ok as long as you don't train to failure on any of them except for the last one. I still feel it is no comparison to the 8-12 range as Zar mentioned though.

4g64fiero
06-14-2011, 07:58 PM
Coan/Phillipi deadlift program is alot of singles and doubles follow by speed sets. I'd say that program is legit.

mchicia1
06-14-2011, 08:01 PM
Coan/Phillipi deadlift program is alot of singles and doubles follow by speed sets. I'd say that program is legit.

Strength program...

OP is concerned with hypertrophy.

4g64fiero
06-14-2011, 08:10 PM
Strength program...

OP is concerned with hypertrophy.

I know but Ed Coan is a BIG guy for his height. Just sayin.

Dan Fanelli
06-14-2011, 11:11 PM
Strength program...

OP is concerned with hypertrophy.

99.9999% of the time a big deadlift = big muscles.

NickAus
06-14-2011, 11:38 PM
99.9999% of the time a big deadlift = big muscles.

Its not from doing singles..............its from ALL the work put in over the years to build the deadlift IMO.

Dan Fanelli
06-14-2011, 11:42 PM
Its not from doing singles..............its from ALL the work put in over the years to build the deadlift IMO.

I agree.... BUT... They still get big from training deadlifts with low reps. They just do other stuff for hypertrophy. This was my initial recommendation. Im sure there are strong deadifters that are big that trained deadlifts mainly in the 8-12 rep range, but more would stick to lower reps.

JT111
06-15-2011, 05:48 AM
With the above considered, would it be effective to combine maybe one heavy set with two sets with more moderate reps say 10?

mchicia1
06-15-2011, 07:19 AM
99.9999% of the time a big deadlift = big muscles.

Are you kidding? I can pull up so many videos of skinny people pulling 6-7 plates on youtube. Pulling singles does not make one big.

I think its funny how it has to be one or the other. I set a new max every time I pull and I follow it up with a 10-12 set every single time I deadlift. No problems here and my back is definitely my best body part.


With the above considered, would it be effective to combine maybe one heavy set with two sets with more moderate reps say 10?

That would be good.

Off Road
06-15-2011, 07:37 AM
Are you kidding? I can pull up so many videos of skinny people pulling 6-7 plates on youtube.

That is sooooo true. Really pisses me off too. I see these skinny guys with no muscle pulling big weights after a very short time training. Meanwhile I struggle with that lift way more than any other lift I do. But it does make me feel better when I see that they pull 600 lbs but can't squat 250 to depth :evillaugh:

mchicia1
06-15-2011, 07:39 AM
That is sooooo true. Really pisses me off too. I see these skinny guys with no muscle pulling big weights after a very short time training. Meanwhile I struggle with that lift way more than any other lift I do. But it does make me feel better when I see that they pull 600 lbs but can't squat 250 to depth :evillaugh:

Long arms, short torso, short legs FTW on the deadlift.

Dan Fanelli
06-15-2011, 08:22 AM
Are you kidding? I can pull up so many videos of skinny people pulling 6-7 plates on youtube. Pulling singles does not make one big.

I think its funny how it has to be one or the other. I set a new max every time I pull and I follow it up with a 10-12 set every single time I deadlift. No problems here and my back is definitely my best body part.



That would be good.

Ya, and I can pull up MANY more of huge guys lifting huge weight. There will always be anomalies, but don't confuse them for the norm.

And I agree that both is the way to go. I just don't think in most instances that higher rep deadlifts is a good idea. But a combination of heavy singles, moderate clusters and accessory work is the best way to build size in most instances. There are those, like yourself that can get away with sets of 10-12, but that too is not the norm.

Sean S
06-15-2011, 10:16 AM
I agreed with Dan that the skinny guys pulling huge weights are the exception and not the rule. Most guys who have normal proportions and huge DL's have a significant amount of muscle.
I think the bottom line is that to optimally build muscle with the DL you have to find a way to get significant volume in. Whether that is high rep sets, cluster sets, or very short rest periods with singles is a matter of opinion and personal preference. In the end you have to figure out a way to get the volume in without a significant breakdown in technique.