Optimising resistance training: How to maximize muscle hypertrophy.

Unveiling the Secrets of Optimal Resistance Training Techniques for Maximum Muscle Growth: A Comprehensive Review

Embarking on a journey to maximize muscle hypertrophy through regimented resistance training (RT) demands meticulous attention to exercise technique. In this narrative review, we unravel the key components of proper RT technique for achieving optimal muscle growth. Authored by experts from the Applied Muscle Development Laboratory at CUNY Lehman College and Jeff Nippard Fitness, this exploration delves into exercise-specific kinematics, repetition tempo, and range of motion (ROM) to provide actionable insights.

Understanding Proper Training Technique:

The term "training technique" encompasses the controlled execution of bodily movements to target specific muscle groups while minimizing injury risks. With an emphasis on applied anatomy and biomechanics, the review aims to demystify what constitutes appropriate RT technique for maximizing muscle hypertrophy.

Repetition Tempo:

The review scrutinizes the critical role of repetition tempo, suggesting that a broad range of durations (2-8 seconds) can stimulate hypertrophy effectively. Research findings on eccentric and concentric phase duration combinations are explored, offering nuanced recommendations. While existing evidence leans towards slower eccentric and faster concentric tempos, the review underscores the need for further exploration in this dynamic field.

Range of Motion:

Examining the degree of movement at specific joints during exercises, the review advocates for a ROM that emphasizes long muscle lengths to optimize hypertrophy. Contrary to conventional wisdom, partial ROM at longer muscle lengths is posited to potentially outperform full ROM in certain scenarios. However, the review acknowledges the need for additional research to solidify these recommendations across various muscle groups.

Exercise-Specific Kinematics:

The authors shed light on exercise-specific guidelines, emphasizing body positioning and movement patterns. While drawing from applied anatomy and biomechanical principles, the review acknowledges the scarcity of direct evidence linking specific techniques to hypertrophy outcomes. The current literature prompts a call for further research to clarify the importance of strict body positioning for maximizing muscle growth.

Practical Recommendations:

Synthesizing the findings, the review offers practical recommendations for RT programs focused on muscle hypertrophy. Emphasizing a flexible approach to repetition technique, the authors advocate for a ROM that allows full muscle stretch, coupled with a repetition duration of 2-8 seconds. Acknowledging the uncertainty surrounding strict versus lenient techniques, the review urges adherence to recommended repetition tempo and ROM while minimizing unintended muscle group involvement.


As we navigate the evolving landscape of resistance training techniques, this comprehensive review unveils the potential flexibility in repetition technique for maximizing muscle growth. The synthesis of existing evidence provides a roadmap for practitioners, athletes, and coaches, while highlighting the imperative need for continued research to refine our understanding of optimal RT techniques for hypertrophy.


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