To Top

IRON MAN E-Zine: Issue #365: Jaw-Dropping Growth With the Austrian Oak

IRON MAN E-Zine: Issue #365:
Jaw-Dropping Growth With the Austrian Oak

Jaw-Dropping Growth With the Austrian Oak

Q: I saw someone mention that Arnold used Positions of Flexion. Is that true? I’m thinking about trying it, but I’m not sure if it will work.

A: Arnold used a lot of exercises, so he definitely favored a multi-angular approach in his training. If you look at the workouts he used during his bodybuilding dominance, you’ll see shades of POF, such as bench presses (midrange), flyes (stretch) and crossovers (contracted) for his massive chest.

One bodypart on which he did make a conscious effort to train those three particular angles was biceps. His favorite routine was barbell or dumbbell curls (midrange), incline curls (stretch) and concentration curls (contracted).

Perhaps that’s why Arnold’s biceps are still considered some of the all-time best—that and good genetics.

Does POF work? Well, it provides you with structured exercise choices that train each bodypart through their full range of motion, which is a big piece of the mass-building puzzle. The three positions–midrange, stretch and contracted–do more than complete the full-range chain, however. They also provide growth stimulation from three specific pathways: max force, stretch overload and tension/occlusion.

Each of those contributes to growth in its own unique way. For example, an animal study that used only stretch overload for one month produced a 300 percent increase in muscle mass. That’s the largest muscle mass increase ever created in a lab setting–and that’s with just one of those “positions” or pathways.

We want to get you excited about trying POF because believing in what you’re doing is very important to success. With that in mind, here’s one of the many e-mails we’ve received on the power of Positions of Flexion…

“I’ve been using the 3D POF routine [from 3D Muscle Building] for over 4 months and have gotten the best results I’ve ever had. I’m 18 and have seriously added to my measurements while losing bodyfat at the same time. My arms are now at 17’’ while my waist has gone down to 29’’! The X Reps have changed my life forever also, and they will always be in my workouts. I plan on staying drug free and competing soon, as I feel like I’ve stumbled upon the Holy Grail of muscle building! Thank you!” —Sage Natvig, via Internet

Arnold also used end-of-set X-Rep partials in various forms. We’ll have more on that in a future e-zine.

Note: 3D Muscle Building is the official Positions-of-Flexion e-workout guide. Most of our mass programs are built around POF, including the majority in X-traordinary Muscle-Building Workouts—10 Complete Print-and-Go Size and Strength Programs; however, the XMBW e-book may soon be discontinued, as each of those 10 complete workout, such as the POF Power Pyramid, will become a stand-alone e-program sold individually. If you want all 10 in a complete, inexpensive package, it’s still available for a limited time. See the XMBW e-book for more info.

Q: You never discuss X Reps much anymore. Have you moved on to other techniques? Do you still believe in the X-Rep method?

A: Absolutely–to both questions. We have incorporated more mass-building methods into our workouts; however, end-of-set X-Rep partials have become part of our standard workout protocol–at every session. They are that effective! They extend a set at the semistretch point where optimal fiber recruitment occurs, so they increase a set’s anabolic drive exponentially–and in conjunction with POF, they took our physiques to a new level of muscularity.

For the uninitiated, X-Reps are eight-inch partials at the point on the stroke where the target muscle is semi-stretched, such as near the bottom of an incline press–a few inches off the chest to just below the halfway point…

Extending a set at that point with short bursts forces the target muscle to keep firing more fast-twitch growth fibers. As we explain in our X e-books, that’s the key spot where the key fast-twitch fibers can effectively contract. We usually like to do X Reps on only one set, usually the last set of a big compound exercise, as they ratchet up the intensity of any set to extreme levels. If you abuse them, they can cause overtraining.

As for the “other methods” we use, X Reps have morphed into a number of size-building X-hybrid techniques, such as Double-X Overload and X Fade.

DXO is perfect for stretch-position exercises, like dumbbell flyes. On every rep you lower to the stretch point, pull up about eight to 10 inches, move back into the stretch, then pull the dumbbells all the way up through the full stroke. You’re doing an X-Rep between each full rep, which triggers more stretch overload (remember the animal study that got a 300 percent increase in muscle mass in one month with stretch overload as the only stimulus–powerful stuff!).

X Fade is tailor made for contracted-position exercises, like pushdowns, where there is resistance at both ends of the stroke. At full-range exhaustion you get the bar down into the contracted, or flexed, position for X-Rep pulses, squeezing the target muscle. Then you allow the bar to rise to the semi-stretch point and do X Reps at that key fiber-activation spot. If you can’t manage X Reps, use a static hold at the X Spot.

When we added those and a few other X-hybrid techniques to our X-Rep POF workouts, our mass took another leap. Exciting stuff! (You can see the before and after photos in the Beyond X e-book info.)

X Reps and X-hybrid techniques can quickly transform your physique–if you don’t abuse them. Give the above a try, and watch as you pack on more size.

Till next time, train hard–and smart–for BIG results.

Note: The Ultimate Mass Workout is the original X-Rep manual that includes our first X-Rep transformation program. For more on the evolution of X Reps as well as X-hybrid techniques, see Beyond X-Rep Muscle Building.

—Steve Holman and Jonathan Lawson

Latest e-book release:
The Ultimate Power-Density Mass Workout includes the latest eye-opening data on the key muscle fibers that have the most potential for growth (it’s rewriting physiology textbooks) and the best mass-building rep tempo. See how one legendary Austrian bodybuilder used Power-Density to build dominant, dramatic muscle mass, his combo-to-grow methods included. You also get four complete, printable workouts–one that takes only about 30 minutes per session–plus X Reps, POF and more. More details.
•Eric Broser’s Power/Rep Range/Shock Workout gives you everything you need to apply his max-mass system for incredible new gains–including all 12 printable workouts and a big Q&A section. More details.
The Ultimate 10×10 Mass Workout contains a four-days-per-week, one-ultimate-exercise-per-bodypart program and also a heavy/light version, with heavy POF alternated with a one-exercise 10×10 routine. More details.
The Ultimate Fat-to-Muscle Workout
is based on the latest metabolic research so you can get bigger and leaner fast without long, mind-numbing cardio–you’ll burn fat and build muscle 24/7 with customized mass-building weight workouts. More details.

Click on the e-books for more information:

Newbies: If you’re a beginning bodybuilder, coming back from a layoff or a trainer who trains beginners, our new e-book, Quick-Start Muscle-Building Guide, is for you.

For any questions or comments regarding the IRON MAN Magazine Online Newsletter, please email [email protected]. To unsubscribe, please see the instructions at the bottom of this email.

To follow the ITRC training program in “Train, Eat, Grow,” get a copy of the latest issue of IRON MAN.

This Special Report was submitted by Jonathan Lawson and Steve Holman.
The IRON MAN Training & Research Team

The ITRC Training Newsletter is not intended as training advice for everyone. You must consult your physician before beginning any diet or training program. You may forward this email to as many friends as you want, but do not photocopy or reprint this report in any format without the written permission of the copyright holder.

Help us build the IRON MAN Research Team — Tell a friend! If you know someone who would benefit from Supplement Updates, Diet Tips and Freebies, forward them this e-zine or tell them to visit us at and click on FREE Training Newsletter.

*We DO NOT sell any subscriber e-mail addresses.

*If someone has signed you up for this free newsletter without your permission, or you have changed your mind and don’t want to receive it after all, you can click on the link at the bottom of this e-mail to unsubscribe.

Visit the Home Gym Warehouse online store for the latest books, videos and equipment specials at

All Content (c) Copyright 2009 IRON MAN Magazine
All Rights Reserved

Instantized Creatine- Gains In Bulk

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

More in E-zine

  • Ezine 918: Pain-to-gain

    Subject: IRON MAN E-Zine: Issue #918: Pain-to-gain exercise change (build more muscle size) Q: I’m a big fan of Position-of-Flexion mass training....

    Steve Holman and Jonathan LawsonDecember 19, 2014
  • Ezine #905: Rhythm Method for More Muscle Hypertrophy

    I've been doing mostly compound exercises with X-centric on the first set, two standard sets, and speed on the last one....

    Steve Holman and Jonathan LawsonNovember 13, 2014
  • Ezine #902: Heavy/Light, X-centric Sets and Muscle Hypertrophy

    I really like X-centric sets . Great muscle feel and pump. I'm getting ready...

    Steve Holman and Jonathan LawsonOctober 20, 2014
  • Ezine #897: Speed Muscle Growth

    Q: I tried DP 4X on my big midrange exercise with a speed drop set after the last one. Wow, what...

    Iron Man MagazineOctober 3, 2014
  • Ezine #879: No-Cardio Fat Loss

    Q: I read that you guys got super ripped without doing any cardio. I also saw that Arnold did no cardio...

    Steve Holman and Jonathan LawsonSeptember 3, 2014
  • Slight Volume Uptick to Get Big Quick

    I have found that your change-to-gain method works. I have put on five pounds in the past month, but I know...

    Steve Holman and Jonathan LawsonAugust 29, 2014
  • Best Muscle-Growth Method for You

    Q: I just started using the 4X methods. Great stuff. Loving the pumps, but I'm wondering if 4X is better for...

    Iron Man MagazineAugust 15, 2014
  • Light the Iso-TORQ Fuse to Get Huge

    When I use regular TORQ (30-20-15) on isolation exercises like leg extensions, can I add weight each set?

    Steve Holman and Jonathan LawsonAugust 11, 2014
  • One Intra-Set Change to Jack Up Muscle Gains

    Q: I love 4X because it's 10 reps per set. I get the "hypertrophic tension time" of more than 40 seconds...

    Steve Holman and Jonathan LawsonJuly 31, 2014