PDA

View Full Version : 20 Rep Squats


Kevin Perry
03-12-2009, 08:20 PM
Is there any benefit to training 20 rep squats for size or weight gain? Just curious.

Donald Lee
03-12-2009, 08:49 PM
Your question isn't stated very clearly.

Kevin Perry
03-12-2009, 09:13 PM
ok...

would there be any benefit in doing a 20 rep squat program for strength gains or hypertrophy gains?


..hmm sounded clear to me

Donald Lee
03-12-2009, 09:35 PM
These thoughts may be of interest:

This is an excellent example of the value of experience. 20 rep squat
schemes have been around for over fifty years. Milk's been around even
longer.
In 1971 my Olympic Weightlifting coach was doing 20 rep sets of ATG
front squats with 100 kilos. A former member of the Dutch National
Soccer Team, he stood 6'1" and 220 lbs and was ripped like few
bodybuilders of the day. His quads were massive, ripped, striated and
quite functional. One Sun morning we ran 17 7:00 min miles with 30
seconds rest between each one at the Santa Barbara City College Track.
I went home and spent the rest of the day cramping massively, while my
coach went down to the beach and played volleyball, I was 21 at the
time, he was 30.
My coach's post workout meal was organic raw milk and organic raw soy
beans. He always had a bag of soy beans with him and ate them like
most people eat peanuts.
A friend of mine, a skinny volleyball player desperate to gain size,
particularly in his legs, took my advice and started doing my old
coach's training scheme of 20 rep sets and whole organic milk. He put
on nearly 30 lbs in 6 months. His vertical went up about 6 inches too.

Old school training, very old school.

Dirk,
It is unfortunate that you are not familiar with Dragomir Cirioslan's
story. If you were you'd know why your position is both disingenuous
and ill informed and you wouldn't ask such questions. Dragomir was
skinny and weak when he was a kid in addition to having heart
problems. At a young age he began doing traditional Olympic
Weightlifting training, no more than 3 to 5 rep sets. But once he
reached a reasonable level of strength, to stimulate muscle growth and
enhance conditioning he also did high rep training, including 20 rep
or breathing squats. He went on to become one of the best
Weightlifters in the world. He took a Bronze at the LA Olympics in
spite of a serious injury that laid him up for 2 months just prior to
the games, allowing him only two weeks to prepare.

Dirk: "except maybe for those who are so skinny and weak that more
muscleis the solution to any of their problems.'

Multiple sets of 20 rep squats can stimulate growth and become the
foundation of athletic development and were part of Dragomir's
training program, and helped him overcome being skinny, weak and having
heat problems. I find it hard to believe you have no understanding of
muscle hypertrophy and conditioning training for beginners. This sort
of training is so fundamental and been around a long, long time, I
can't believe you haven't heard of it. Please read Ken ONeill's post.

Dirk: "I'm not exactly sure 20 rep squats will do much for anybody's
'explosive strength',..."
This indicates a profound ignorance of the use of Weightlifting in
athletic development. Have you ever heard of periodized training?
Other than weight class athletes that are at their maximum allowed
weight, muscle hypertrophy training is a component of virtually every
athlete's or sports teams periodized training program. First you grow
more muscle, then you train it to be more powerful.
I have trained numerous National level athletes and volleyball
players. The first thing I had the National Team volleyball players
begin doing was muscle hypertrophy training including multiple sets of
20 rep squats. All of them increased lean muscle mass by at least 20
lbs within three months. As their muscle mass increased, more strength
and power exercises were integrated into the training regimen until
they were in season, by which time all training was focused on
maintaining power.
When I was training Karch Kiraly, he did 5 x 20 x 300 lbs ATG squats
for quad and hip complex hypertrophy and conditioning. When I began
preparing Karch he weighed 196 lbs. In '96 when he won numerous pro
tournaments, the King of the Beach and the inaugural Olympic Beach
Volleyball Championship, he was 6'2", 220 lbs with sub 5% body fat, a
45 BPM waking morning heart rate and a 40" no approach vertical. He
was widely considered the best (and best conditioned) volleyball
player in the world.

Donald Lee
03-12-2009, 09:37 PM
I think density training could also be a viable option for hypertrophy and strength gains.

Dave Van Skike
03-12-2009, 10:16 PM
in a word.....

yes.

Garrett Smith
03-12-2009, 10:41 PM
My first 1-month cycle of 20-rep squats (1 set, 3x/week) plus 1/2 GOMAD resulted in 15# of weight gained.

My second cycle resulted in 10# of weight gained.

I'd say I retained about half of that weight after going off the program.

I would never do it again, and I completely agree with Dave.

Kevin Perry
03-13-2009, 05:26 AM
Cool Article Donald, thanks. Garrett, I thought it was usually one set a week that was enough for the 20 rep squats? 3 x a week?? damn.

Craig Loizides
03-13-2009, 07:59 AM
Cool Article Donald, thanks. Garrett, I thought it was usually one set a week that was enough for the 20 rep squats? 3 x a week?? damn.

Try a search for Super Squats. It's also a fun little book if you don't mind spending the $10.

Donald Lee
03-13-2009, 09:01 AM
Cool Article Donald, thanks. Garrett, I thought it was usually one set a week that was enough for the 20 rep squats? 3 x a week?? damn.

I've never done 20 rep squats nor have I read Super Squats, but I think you're able to do more high rep squats the more oxidative your muscles are. A lot of the old-school strength enthusiasts would trash their legs with high rep squats frequently. I doubt you would be able to do 20-rep squats 3 times/week if you've only been doing low reps.

Mike ODonnell
03-13-2009, 09:03 AM
20rep is supposed to be 1x a week....with a very heavy weight (I forget the max...12-15Rmax?).....tried it once....worst workout I ever did.....couldn't walk for 3 days after.....not going back anytime soon....why anyone would do this voluntarily is beyond me....

Dave Van Skike
03-13-2009, 09:17 AM
Article on 20 rep squats.

http://marunde-muscle.com/sarge98repsquat.html

Sarge:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=euukQSBYyzw

Jesse

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RyyqDB6WMuI

FWIW, 20 reppers have been used by a bunch of people for a bunch of different goals. I used them a long time ago in trainign for track racing (bike).

Theres a guy over at PB who is the poster child for old school power training, runs a bunch, prints adn distance, raw squats over 500 and has been workign towards a 405x20 goal on squats. They are hateful but useful.

Personally I prefer density stuff like 5 on the minute for 10 minutes of 3 on the minute for 20 but its only becuase I'm a candy ass.

Garrett Smith
03-13-2009, 09:34 AM
The Super Squats routine is 3x/week, there are many other 20-rep squat programs out there.

One set should be enough. Any more than that means someone isn't working hard enough.

I added one set of dips and chins on my workout days when I was doing this.

Gavin Harrison
03-13-2009, 09:55 AM
My brother did these in the off season for college football, with the gallon of milk a day. He gained a lot of weight, really fast (body and squat), so I guess it works OK.

Patrick Donnelly
03-13-2009, 12:12 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6GG9KsSiMMc
Awesome video from Supreme Sport and Performance Training in Rockville, MD.



I gave 20 rep squats a shot 1x/week for a few weeks, but didn't get very far. I was doing them with 80+% of my 1RM, since I have a very low 1RM and endurance-biased quads, but found it hard to make progress. Maybe I'll give them a shot again once I can at least 1RM 405.

Chris H Laing
03-13-2009, 12:20 PM
20rep is supposed to be 1x a week....with a very heavy weight (I forget the max...12-15Rmax?)

How could it be a 20 rep set if you're doing it with you're 15 rep max...

Patrick Donnelly
03-13-2009, 12:46 PM
How could it be a 20 rep set if you're doing it with you're 15 rep max...

Generally, it is said that your 10 rep max equals your 20 rep MAX.

The difference is in the font style.

Steven Low
03-13-2009, 02:07 PM
How could it be a 20 rep set if you're doing it with you're 15 rep max...
It's very, very painful. Literally.

Kevin Perry
03-13-2009, 02:08 PM
hmm might be worth giving it a shot just for the suck of it.

Garrett Smith
03-13-2009, 03:26 PM
In terms of the rep maxes.

To determine the initial 20rep squat weight, you take the weight you could normally squat 10 straight reps.

During the Super Squats approach, you take a minimum of three deep breaths *between* each rep. One can take as many breaths as they want to between reps, so long as the weight stays on their back (ie. isn't racked at all). This is how a 10RM can be stretched to a 20RM at the same weight.

Get the book if you want to do it right, it's a small investment, probably less than $5 used on Amazon.

Gary Valentine
03-13-2009, 06:06 PM
It is unfortunate that you are not familiar with Dragomir Cirioslan's
story. If you were you'd know why your position is both disingenuous
and ill informed and you wouldn't ask such questions. Dragomir was
skinny and weak when he was a kid in addition to having heart
problems. At a young age he began doing traditional Olympic
Weightlifting training, no more than 3 to 5 rep sets. But once he
reached a reasonable level of strength, to stimulate muscle growth and
enhance conditioning he also did high rep training, including 20 rep
or breathing squats. He went on to become one of the best
Weightlifters in the world. He took a Bronze at the LA Olympics i

You might want to do a search on athletes who were DQ'd at Olympic games before touting dragomir as someone who gained muscle with raw milk:-)

Kevin Perry
03-13-2009, 08:21 PM
regardless, 20 rep squats is another good way although painful to gain mass from what i've read.

Im guessing this type of training you would only want to do once a year at least since it's so demanding but now I'm curious about the strength endurance aspect. Wouldn't training this way turn off the fast twitch fibers needed for pure strength work needed for a weightlifter or powerlifter and engage the slow twitch fibers?

Donald Lee
03-14-2009, 01:04 AM
regardless, 20 rep squats is another good way although painful to gain mass from what i've read.

Im guessing this type of training you would only want to do once a year at least since it's so demanding but now I'm curious about the strength endurance aspect. Wouldn't training this way turn off the fast twitch fibers needed for pure strength work needed for a weightlifter or powerlifter and engage the slow twitch fibers?

I don't think squats can be performed slowly enough to really engage the slow twitch fibers. Regardless, 20-rep squats increase the fast twitch oxidative-glycolitic adaptations.

This thread has some useful info that's related:

http://performancemenu.com/forum/showthread.php?t=799&highlight=sarcoplasmic

Donald Lee
03-14-2009, 01:05 AM
It is unfortunate that you are not familiar with Dragomir Cirioslan's
story. If you were you'd know why your position is both disingenuous
and ill informed and you wouldn't ask such questions. Dragomir was
skinny and weak when he was a kid in addition to having heart
problems. At a young age he began doing traditional Olympic
Weightlifting training, no more than 3 to 5 rep sets. But once he
reached a reasonable level of strength, to stimulate muscle growth and
enhance conditioning he also did high rep training, including 20 rep
or breathing squats. He went on to become one of the best
Weightlifters in the world. He took a Bronze at the LA Olympics i

You might want to do a search on athletes who were DQ'd at Olympic games before touting dragomir as someone who gained muscle with raw milk:-)

It's safest to assume everyone's on drugs.

Matt Horvath
03-14-2009, 09:10 PM
I did this a little before new years. I was about 6 months into training and looked at it as a hazing experience before I could rightfully be allowed in the weight room.

I had been doing simple 5x5 and 3x10, so low reps, and trying to lose weight. I leaned out enough where I figured I should add some muscle.

My 1 rm squat at the start of the cycle was 305. I weighed about 170 lbs. I started the 20 reppers at 205/~68%. I did 2 workouts a week, and jumped 10 lbs per workout until I got to about ~75%. I did +5lbs per workout after that.

It started easy but eventually got hard. At about rep 15 I would let out a grunt/primal death scream, that would startle the whole weight room.

I ended the program 6-7 weeks later at a chubby 190 lbs. I got 18 reps at about 87% of my starting 1 rm. After that the progress fell off pretty quick and I called it a finished training cycle. My 1 rm went up about 10% and I was doing sets of 20 heavier than I ever squatted 5x5 w/.

I had skinny rock climbers legs before and now I have a bit of a squatter's butt.

The thing that really helped me when the weight got heavier was hitting some heavy singles before that set of 20.

sollo rick
03-17-2009, 01:03 AM
This
http://www.youtube.com/user/Blenderate
Is one of the most inspiring things I have seen
I wish this guy had a training blog

Dave Van Skike
03-17-2009, 05:55 AM
This
http://www.youtube.com/user/Blenderate
Is one of the most inspiring things I have seen
I wish this guy had a training blog

that is legit.

bookmarked!

Gant Grimes
03-17-2009, 08:46 AM
This
http://www.youtube.com/user/Blenderate
Is one of the most inspiring things I have seen
I wish this guy had a training blog

Respect. Bonus points for playing Queensryche during the 365#x5 bench.

Derek Weaver
03-17-2009, 10:33 AM
This
http://www.youtube.com/user/Blenderate
Is one of the most inspiring things I have seen
I wish this guy had a training blog

Wow. Just subscribed to that youtube channel.

Just reading about people doing 20 rep squats for any real time has made me feel a little sick and dizzy. I don't recommend them purely because I draw the line somewhere between discomfort and misery.

They're a good tool to keep in the box though.

Adam Gagliardi
03-18-2009, 10:15 AM
This
http://www.youtube.com/user/Blenderate
Is one of the most inspiring things I have seen
I wish this guy had a training blog

hahhaa...we train togetheron days our schedule allows, usually some silly conditioning nonsense. Andy is a very strong dude..you can check the gym out this weekend--grand opening on sat...i posted some info in the strongman thread

Bradley Martyn
03-18-2009, 07:31 PM
sets of 25! with your bodyweight is death

Kevin Perry
03-18-2009, 07:56 PM
That guy is insane, awesome stuff there.

Talked to my friend the other day, he just hit 405 for 20 reps recently.

Derek Weaver
03-18-2009, 11:13 PM
That guy is insane, awesome stuff there.

Talked to my friend the other day, he just hit 405 for 20 reps recently.

You hang around with more motivated people than I do.

John Alston
03-19-2009, 04:31 PM
Throw in a high rep day once in a while, it can help. Recently elsewhere there's been some nice talk of the value of alternating high rep work like 20s with max attempts, Platz like.
I tried to get my gym/team mates to have a friendly squat contest of bodyweight-on-the-bar for reps past December, but no one would join cough Yoon cough. Without competition it was too easy to be satisfied with 30, then coach reminds me I should have done the few more reps to get to my age... maybe doing that every year on your birthday is a good way to keep young. We'll see in August...
Anyway, 30x85kg seemed to make my legs grow noticably over the next week. It's not sustainable, but it's something.

sollo rick
03-19-2009, 08:50 PM
For those of you with a life
Gym web site
http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=SupremeSportsPT&view=videos
The man’s web site-Adam
http://www.youtube.com/user/Blenderate
The above man’s web site-Andy
http://www.youtube.com/user/ajgag8
Prilepin’s table vid
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ggvQsq2WPcM&feature=channel_page
the link Andy talks about
http://www.cathletics.com/forum/showthread.php?t=3180
Again amazing
Can you elaborate on the conditioning drills and how you work in high reps?

Adam Gagliardi
03-20-2009, 06:19 AM
For those of you with a life
Gym web site--Supreme Sports Performance and Training--Rockville, MD
http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=SupremeSportsPT&view=videos
The man’s web site-Andy
http://www.youtube.com/user/Blenderate
The above man’s web site-Adam
http://www.youtube.com/user/ajgag8
Prilepin’s table vid--Matt
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ggvQsq2WPcM&feature=channel_page
the link Adam talks about
http://www.cathletics.com/forum/showthread.php?t=3180
Again amazing
Can you elaborate on the conditioning drills and how you work in high reps?

I made some small corrections, lol. Ill see if I can get Andy to chime in here.

As far as conditioning drills....myself, andy, Phil, and MAtt--gym owner--and a few other try and meet at the gym, usually do our own thing for main lifts, then do some conditioning. Conditioning usually consists of some sort of prowler or sled rotation for 100+ feet, sometimes sprints, sometimes walking, heavy or light. Sometimes we'll take the SSB and do walking lunges, sometimes we'll do different distances on the rower, do a light strongman type medley with farmers, sled, prowler, etc.....we basically make up something we think is pretty brutal and just go do it. Its pretty fun when you have good group to do it with.

personally--i try to keep things pretty loose, have a heavy UB, LB, and events day, with a bunch of other days thrown in. I dont like to write out more than a weeks worth of training due to my schedule- workwise. i keep a log on here, so you can check that out, I am a mortal, unlike Andy, so ill give you quick rundown of his training.

As far as Andy---the squat guy, aka blenderate---he has a BB show coming up, he previously competed in strongman, which is what i do, and he also did a PL meet or 2. He has done CF in the past but added in a good amount of heavier stuff. At the present time he has been doing DC training, which calls for working up to somehting heavy and then doing a "widowmaker" set, which is the 20 reppers. andy has a crazy strong squat, therefore his 20 reppers tend to be quite heavy as well.
hope that helps--again--ill tell andy to check out the thread. if you have any ??'s, ill do my best to answer them,

Adam Gagliardi
03-20-2009, 11:20 AM
Just an FYI-- Andy signed up for an account here and should be on in the next day or so.

Dave Van Skike
03-20-2009, 11:54 AM
Would love to hear Andy's perspective on that DC training.. Whether you're goal is size, strength or a specific athletic endeavor, there is really something to be said for working up adn culminating each session to one huge effort..then call it good.

Andy Ruse
03-21-2009, 06:51 AM
Would love to hear Andy's perspective on that DC training.. Whether you're goal is size, strength or a specific athletic endeavor, there is really something to be said for working up adn culminating each session to one huge effort..then call it good.

I enjoyed the DC stuff for a few months. I think it's really good for bodybuilding, but all those rest-pause sets are INTENSE. Especially when you have to beat your previous effort every workout. After a while, my nervous system couldn't handle it and I started swaping in some intense stuff until I was basically doing a different program.

I would recommend anybody give DC a try who wants to put on some size without sacrificing their strength.

Andy Ruse
03-21-2009, 06:53 AM
This
http://www.youtube.com/user/Blenderate
Is one of the most inspiring things I have seen
I wish this guy had a training blog

Thanks. :)

I had a training blog for a while, but nobody cared, so I stopped. Maybe I should start a new one.

George Mounce
03-21-2009, 07:05 AM
Holy crap that squat video is awesome.

Kevin Perry
03-21-2009, 08:09 AM
I enjoyed the DC stuff for a few months. I think it's really good for bodybuilding, but all those rest-pause sets are INTENSE. Especially when you have to beat your previous effort every workout. After a while, my nervous system couldn't handle it and I started swaping in some intense stuff until I was basically doing a different program.

I would recommend anybody give DC a try who wants to put on some size without sacrificing their strength.

welcome to the boards Andy, the DC training does look like something worth a shot. Major props on that squat vid.. insane.

Matthieu Hertilus
03-28-2009, 01:46 PM
Would it be possible to integrate 20 rep squats into the strength or bulgarian cycle or would that be overdoing it?

Garrett Smith
03-28-2009, 10:16 PM
Yeah, that would be overdoing it.

sollo rick
03-29-2009, 01:43 AM
Would love to see a work out blog
With a little theory too
If you want to get all “crossfit” on us and post workouts
That would be cool too
Personally I try to watch vids like yours before I go to the gym
And was really moved to push it
Much respect man

Liam Dougherty Springer
03-29-2009, 03:45 PM
Holy crap that squat video is awesome.

If you are talking about the 405x26:cool: amen.... I threw up in my mouth a little bit towards the end! LOL

I do not think my nervouse system could handle that DC protocol I can barely do the CAWOD.

sollo rick
03-29-2009, 10:33 PM
Dc forum
http://www.intensemuscle.com/
Dc dvd and creator page
http://www.jasonwojo.com/index.html
Dante’s youtube page
http://www.youtube.com/user/DanteDC
a similar dvd with Justin harris
http://www.flexcart.com/members/elitefts/default.asp?cid=273&m=PD&pid=2148
youtube page with lots of Justin’s lifts
http://www.youtube.com/user/skuclo
I used some dc training to increase my pull-ups long ago
Worked great for me

Andy Ruse
08-23-2009, 01:04 PM
Would love to see a work out blog
With a little theory too
If you want to get all “crossfit” on us and post workouts
That would be cool too
Personally I try to watch vids like yours before I go to the gym
And was really moved to push it
Much respect man

If you're still interested, I just started a training log here: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=118490371

I'm currently coming off of two surgeries on my left elbow and preparing for my powerlifting comeback at the 2010 Raw Unity competition.