Increase Strength With Pause Rep Training

Increase Strength With Pause Rep Training

If you are interested in maximizing your strength and performance, you could try taking a closer look at ‘Pause Rep Training’.

LAST UPDATED: May 2020 by Ben.

Take a Pause

How often do you pause and take a look around the gym you go to and take in not only your surroundings but the other people in there?

Fair enough, if there’s a hot chick it is likely you have been checking out her ‘form’, but otherwise..?

When I am in the gym I am in the ‘zone’, little else around me is going to get my attention.

However, sometimes it is worth checking out what other guys are doing, and for sure, it’s usually the younger guys who are throwing the weights around with little iota of the outcome, sure, they’re young and new to the gym and they can and do seem to pack on a great deal of muscle and in rapid succession but you’ll notice he is storming through those reps and sets like popeye on speed.

man at the bottom of the squat

Take Stock, and Adjust

So that’s working for him, for now at least anyway, but if you are like me, in your thirties and been knocking around in the gym or even a few if you have been around the block a bit (me again) and finding it increasingly difficult to maintain your strength and size goals you may wish to slow down a bit and take heed of your own workout.

Pause Reps

Pause reps are a great way for you to start regaining and forging ahead with your strength and size gains.

To do this you will need to have full control of your movements.

So what are we looking for with pause reps?


Well, the pause actually, this is a very important part of the movement.

The key is to pause for up to 4 seconds and hold the weight in the eccentric part of the rep (so hold that 300lbs barbell at the bottom of your rep for example when doing the bench press).

This is the weakest part of the repetition range and there is no kinetic energy remaining to drive the rep into the concentric range.

So when you do return the weight to the concentric range you have had to muster all of your strength to do so.

Your muscle fibers will be absolutely targeted at this point and in turn, will grow whilst increasing strength.

That kid is not using strength but kinetic energy.

man o the bench presslifting 5 plates

Also, whilst pausing in the concentric position and having to hold that 300lbs barbell an arm’s length above your chest and head area those muscles will be targeted in an isometric manner which will massively increase mass.

The Take Home

The key to pause reps is proper form and a full range of movement.

Always start off with a manageable weight to get the technique and pause correct, then start loading the weight for big strength and size gains!

We found a great resource here that can help you increase strength and become a better performer.

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Increase strength with pause rep training
Article Name
Increase strength with pause rep training
This article briefly looks at the benefit of pause rep training to increase your strength

Ben BA(Hons), PGCert

Ben established this site to be a free resource in 2015. Since then it has gained over half a million visits. He has always been interested in sport and he started playing rugby at the age of 6 represented his town, county and school. Ben also enjoys cycling, has started skiing and is in the Army Reserve representing his Regiment as part of the 150 Regimental Shooting Team. He holds a bachelor's and postgraduate degree in sport exercise & nutrition.
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