When many people first hear the term “super set,” they think it involves an extremely challenging series of strength training exercises reserved for only advanced workout warriors. But in reality, super setting is more about workout efficiency than intensity. And, according to Club Julian Trainer Alex Kulwik, virtually anyone can incorporate super sets into their workout routine and get better results!

Trainer Alex photoTrainer Alex defines super setting as the pairing of exercise sets together that involve at least two muscle groups in your body that are front to back “opposite” of each other, or diametrically opposed. Examples include chest and back, biceps and triceps, quads and hamstrings, etc. It allows you to work out faster and more efficiently because you don’t take the normal 30 to 60 second rest period between sets, you just flow into the second part of the super set. “When one set of muscles is working, the other is resting,” explains Alex. “Super setting also has a cardio benefit because not taking the rest means your heart rate won’t drop as much, and you are burning calories throughout.”

Often times, Alex will design super set routines for members that involve exercises that activate muscles on the same plane. Many times the first set will be a push motion one way, and then a pull the other way to keep the body in balance. He says that super sets can be done on CJ’s circuit training equipment, with free weights, resistance bands – or in combinations. Super sets are generally done in reps 10-12.

Trainer Alex regularly incorporates super setting into many of his sessions with members and believes that a properly designed super set sequence can yield tremendous results for many reasons. But he adds that if you are unsure about how to construct your super set routine correctly, it may be a good idea to first meet with a trainer. “A lot of real ‘gym rats’ understand the concept and have researched it online, but for most people just starting out with super sets, it is a good idea to consult a trainer. It really is a more effective and efficient workout.”

Time is valuable in the gym, and anywhere else for that matter. We are all busy. Alex estimates that those who typically engage in 90-minute strength training workouts could potentially shave their time in the gym by about 25-30 minutes through super setting, mainly through the elimination of “downtime” or rest between sets. This has many advantages obviously for those on a tight schedule, and could also create more time for cardio work, stretching, swimming, group fitness, whirlpool, sauna, or steam.

To learn more about how to properly structure super sets and incorporate them into your weekly routine, please feel free to consult a Club Julian trainer. Personal training is included at no additional cost with your Club Julian 24-Hour Fitness membership.