Q: I’ve been a fan of your logical Positions-of-Flexion mass training for years. It has transformed my physique. I wanted to share my variation, which has brought me new muscle mass and power over the past few months. On the big, midrange move for each muscle [like pulldowns for lats] I do 2-3×5 (heavy low reps); on the stretch-position exercise [like pullovers] I do 2×10; and on the contracted-position move [like stiff-arm pulldowns] I do 2×20. I use a 3-way split, similar to yours at your X-Training Blog, so my workouts take an hour. Every so often I’ll do a 4X sequence on the contracted move (I love 4X too), going 4×15 instead of 20s. Just thought I’d share my triple-rep-range version of your great mass-building system, POF.
A: That’s an excellent way to use POF. There are a lot of variations. In fact, almost all of the X-Rep.com and X-Workouts.com e-books include a complete POF version as well as a basic one—for example, The Ultimate Power-Density Mass Workout basic program uses only one ultimate exercise for most bodyparts, a power pyramid first, followed by a 4X sequence. For chest, it’s decline presses:
(pyramid) 3 x 9, 7, 5-6
(4X style) 4 x 10
That’s it—one exercise. There’s also a complete POF Power-Density program. Here’s the chest workout from it:
Midrange: Bench presses, 2 x 9, 7; 4 x 10
Stretch: Incline flyes, 2 x 7-9
Contracted: Cable crossovers (double drop), 1 x 10(7)(5)
That’s similar to what you’re doing in that you go heavy on bench presses, medium on the stretch move and then finish with a double drop on the contracted move, which is like high reps. However, notice that there is also a 4X sequence on the midrange move, bench presses, after the power work.
I think it’s important to use some type of density-oriented training on the big exercise because you involve so many more fibers. It’s the muscle-synergy concept. In your triple-rep-range version try a 3X or 4X sequence instead of the heavy sets at every other workout. Or simply add a higher-rep back-off set—15 to 20 reps, as Arnold used to do—after your two heavies.
Just a suggestion you can try to add even more more muscle size.
Editor’s note: Steve Holman is the author of many bodybuilding best-sellers and the creator of Positions-of-Flexion muscle training. For information on the POF DVD and Size Surge programs, see the ad sections it this issue. Also visit www.X-Rep.com and X-Workouts.com for info on X-Rep, 4X and 3D POF methods and e-books. IM