Supersetting is one of our favorite ways to get the most out of a workout and do so in a time efficient fashion. Getting well acquainted with supersetting allows you to basically power through two exercises at virtually the same time and really burn out your muscles by hitting them repeatedly but in different ways.
Supersetting is also a great way to break through plateaus when your regular routine just doesn’t seem to be showing much progress anymore. When you hit the same muscles or muscle groups over and over but see less results, supersetting is a great way to overload them without necessarily having to go up in weight. This is useful if you don’t have a spotter or if you are just trying to avoid an unnecessary injury.
We are going to talk about some upper body post-exhaustion supersets in this post. Post-exhaustion supersets are performed when you target the same muscle group two times in a row and can really build large amounts of muscle quickly. In a post-exhaustion superset you do a compound movement first followed by an isolation exercise (pre-exhaustion is where you do isolation first and then compound).
Upper body supersets:
Chest- To do a good post-exhaustion upper body super set you will start with a heavy compound movement first, like bench press or incline bench press. Do a heavy set for your compound exercise then drop weight and do an isolation exercise. To stay in the same muscle group and achieve the desired effect, switch to an isolation exercise like dips, kickbacks, chest flies, or cable flies. The second set should of course be a lighter weight and you should do more reps and try to burn out around 10 reps.
Back- Your compound movement will be something like pull ups, straight leg deadlifts, or bent over rows. With the bent over rows, use a barbell and stand. Bend at the waist and keep your back straight, about parallel with the ground. Keep a slight bend in your knees and your feet around shoulder width apart. Grip the barbell like a bench press and pull it up to right beneath your chest. This is how to turn what people usually do on a flat bench while bent over with dumbbells (more like an isolation move) into a more complete compound movement.
Once you knock out the compound movement switch to an isolation exercise. For your isolation exercise you can do back extensions, pull overs, seated rows, or close or wide grip lat pull downs.
Biceps- You can incorporate any bicep work into your back superset as your isolation exercise. If you are only working biceps on a particular day and are looking for a way to superset them here is a suggestion: For your first exercise do standing barbell curls and make sure that your arms get fully extended each rep. For your superset, switch to dumbbells and crank out some hammer curls.
Shoulders- for your compound movement do standing overhead presses. Keep your legs shoulder width apart and don’t stagger your step. Start with the bar at your collar bone and raise it over your head and lock out your elbows and fully extend those arms. Don’t jump or explode from your legs, try to keep them fairly straight and drive up with your shoulders. After you do this you can superset with isolation movements like frontal and lateral raises.