German Volume Training (GVT): Is it Efficient?

german volume training

IG: @joesthetics

German Volume Training (GVT), or the principle of 10 sets of 10 reps, has become popular thanks to Rolf Fezer, coach of the German national weightlifting team. In 1996, Canadian trainer Charles Polikvin proposed his option of using the GVT method, based on the work of antagonist muscles in supersets, followed by several other well-known strength training methodologists.

The idea of german volume training

We must say that there is no deep meaning in formula 10 to 10, in fact, as well as a clear explanation of the mechanisms that should lead to hitherto unseen muscle growth. Moreover, not a single study was found showing the advantages of this method compared to doing, for example, 5 sets of 10 reps performed to failure.

Let us remind you that the GVT method is not a training program, but is just one of the training methods that can fit very well into the program. Frequent reviews of significant increases in muscle volume during the use of german volume training are most likely caused by an increased level of glycogen storage after such high-volume workouts, which in fact is not true hypertrophy.

german volume training results
IG: @tavicastro

The GVT principle is based on the principle of “A lot, but not hard”, i.e., contrary to popular belief, this method is high volume rather than high intensity.

How to use it?

It is recommended to choose basic exercises that involve the maximum possible amount of muscle—projectile weight approximately 60% of 1RM. The rest time between sets is from 60 to 90 seconds (we recommend 60 seconds). Of the 10 recommended sets, only a couple of the latter are carried out to failure. All previous sets end long before failure, but due to limited rest, with each set to perform 10 repetitions becomes harder and harder, as the muscles become acidic. As a result, after 7-8 sets, performing 10 repetitions becomes the maximum possible.

We recommend using GVTs every 3-4 weeks in one exercise (not necessarily in the basic and not necessarily in the first), and all the others in accordance with the current training plan, without reducing the amount of work for this muscle group.

Additionally, see facts about supersets you didn’t know before.

What is more, why not read about the reason why drop sets are harmful to your progress?