High volume training has been around the bodybuilding arena for decades and will be around for decades to come.  For most athletes building functional muscle is a priority.  Added muscle equals added strength, power, and it aides in protecting the body against blows in contact sport.  So how do we incorporate high volume training into workouts for athletes?  You add German Volume Training into your early training plan.  During certain periods of your off-season training your body will benefit from this high repetition work and this method can be used from two to six weeks during the off-season.

German Volume Training (GVT) was popularized by Rolf Feser in the 1970's while he was the German National Weightlifting Coach.  It began as a 10 sets of 10 repetition program designed to help weightlifters gain lean body mass during their off-season.  Some weightlifters routinely moved up a weight class during a 12 week GVT cycle.  GVT works because it targets a group of motor units, exposing them to an extensive volume of repeated efforts, specifically 10 sets of a single exercise.  The body adapts to the extraordinary stress by hypertrophying the target fibers.  To say this program adds muscle fast is an understatement.  Gains of 10 pounds of muscle in 6-8 weeks not all that uncommon.


The goal is to complete 10 sets of 10 repetitions with the same weight for each exercise per body part.  You want to begin with a weight at 60% of your max effort in that exercise.  Your rest interval between each set should be 60 seconds.  60% seems like a light load but when resting only 60 seconds and performing 10 sets of 10 reps it will challenge your man or womanhood.  You want to choose exercises that recruit the most muscle per rep.  Chest=bench prss or incline bench.  Back=bent over row or weighted pull-up, Quads=back or front squat, Shoulders=front press, Triceps=close grip bench, and lastly Biceps-straight bar curl.

Only use one exercise at 10 sets of 10 repetitions per muscle group.  You can add 1-2 exercises per muscle group with 2-3 sets if needed but it is optional.  Typically 10 sets of 10 repetitions is enough stress and anything more could lead to over training.

Day 1

Chest & Back

Day 2

Legs & Core

Day 3


Day 4

Shoulders & Arms

Day 5


Day 6