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Understanding More About Wave Loading

At a gym, it’s very common to see people picking up a certain weight and then proceeding to lifting that same weight in a 3X10 or 4X12 pattern. With this kind of conventional set & rep pattern, you won’t see optimal results; it’s because there is a slow decrease in your strength as your intensity remains constant and you move from one set to the next. This is where the concept of wave loading comes into the picture; it can bring about a significant change in your lifting results.


Wave Loading – What Is It?

This is a very advanced lifting technique in which you adjust the weight & rep count on each successive set. You can do this either in the descending/ascending order or move up & down just like a wave pattern. This kind of training very effectively exposes the muscles in your body to much higher loads and this is vital for power, strength gains and hypertrophy.

This wave pattern “shocks” the muscles in your body into lifting heavier weights via the “post-activation potentiation” phenomenon. It generates a greater forceful push and recruits more muscle by triggering a much better neuromuscular connection. This allows you to gain greater strength and lift heavier weights. A simple example of a wave loading pattern is:

  • 10 reps of 100 kilos
  • 8 reps of 125 kilos
  • 6 reps of 142 kilos
  • 4 reps of 165 kilos

The wave pattern

You also have the option to use multiple wave loading patterns. In this technique, the 1st wave prepares your muscles to actually lift more on the next wave. The following example is similar to the one above, except that here, we make 2 waves:

  • 10 reps of 102 kilos
  • 8 reps of 124 kilos
  • 6 reps of 142 kilos
  • 10 reps of 111 kilos
  • 8 reps of 133 kilos
  • 6 reps of 156 kilos

This type of a spiking pattern is best if you are focusing on generating very powerful movements, but aren’t too concerned about hypertrophy. For a more pronounced wave, this is the pattern you can follow:

  • 6 reps with 124 kilos
  • 1 rep with 156 kilos
  • 6 reps with 124 pounds
  • 1 rep with 156 kilos

This is just an example and you can get as creative as you want with the wave loading patterns you follow. If you do this with consistency, you will find a significant improvement in your lifting results.


Get Guidance From Experts

If you are a beginner and have just started out on your bodybuilding journey, it’s vital that you get the right kind of guidance from a professional and experienced trainer. The plan they help create for you, will take into account various factors such as your age, fitness level, experience with bodybuilding, your overall health, the schedules you will be able to maintain based on your lifestyle, etc.

The main concept behind most effective and proven techniques is that you should keep your body guessing. It prevents your body from plateauing and helps you achieve better and quicker results. Regardless of the routine and program you follow, it’s also important that you be consistent with your efforts, maintain a healthy diet plan and get adequate sleep and rest.

If you have any questions about the wave loading program and other customised bodyweight exercise routines, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us at Schembri PT. You can send us an email to [email protected]¬†or fill in this contact us form and we’ll reply as soon as possible. We can help you with customised bodybuilding programs that will help you achieve noticeable gains.

Thanks for reading,
Schembri PT Team
02 9648 6405