How Many Repetitions Should I Do? – Workout Tips

by Patrick

in Training Tips

Hey guys. I just wanted to take a minute to show you a video where Jacob Hiller (Jump Manual creator) talks about something I’ve mentioned in previous posts. This has to do with repetition ranges and finding the right number of reps to do for each set of your exercises. Performing the correct number of reps is actually a lot more important than people think.

As Jacob mentions in the video, there are some vertical jump programs that require you to do thousands of reps of each exercise during your workout. I’ve personally used some of these programs and, as you can probably guess, did not see any gains whatsoever. This type of “volume training” might work for a little while and you might see some quick initial results, but eventually you’re going to get to a point of overtraining. Overtraining leads to muscle fatigue and injury. As an example, after only two weeks on the “high volume” training course that I used a while back my knees hurt so bad that I could barely walk.

The other thing with volume workouts that use lots of reps is that you’re not training your speed, quickness, and explosiveness. What you’re actually doing is training your endurance. Sure, endurance is a great thing to have…if you’re a cross country runner. However, if you’re a basketball, football, or rugby player (for example) you need to work on your explosive power if you want to dominate your opponents. Think of it this way: You wouldn’t ask a sprinter to run 3 miles for his workout, would you? No. You would tell him to do short, explosive exercises to build up his strength and power.

As far as the number of reps you should be doing, try to shoot for 10-15 EXPLOSIVE reps. Don’t just lollygag while you workout. If you want results, train like you mean it.

  • Ivan Nondolesmono

    I want to ask a question. What do you mean by increasing the intensity but lowering the repetition? You mean that increasing intensity is same with adding the repetition? Answer please.. 😀

  • Patrick

    Hey Ivan,

    Thanks for asking. Sorry for the lack of clarity. When a lot of people train they tend to not give their best effort. For example, if you are doing an exercise that requires you to jump up as high as you can 10 times, you need to JUMP AS HIGH AS YOU CAN. You can’t just lightly perform the exercise and hope for results. When you perform an exercise you need to do it to the fullest of your capabilities. If you don’t train hard and make your body work hard you will see very little gains, if any. Hope this helps.

  • Ivan Nondolesmono

    what is the connection between high intensity and low repetition??

  • Patrick

    If you’re training with high intensity you shouldn’t be able to do a high number of reps. That’s why you’ll be doing lower reps when working out at a higher intensity. As an example, think about how sprinters train as opposed to marathon runners. Sprinters perform very short (analogous to low repetition), very intense workouts. Conversely, marathon runners perform very long (analogous to high repetition), low intensity workouts. When it comes to training your vertical jump, it’s best to focus on low repetition, high intensity workouts that build explosiveness similar to how a sprinter would train.

  • Ivan Nondolesmono

    High intensity means I am giving my very best in every jump??

  • Patrick

    Exactly! Some people do workouts without really trying. This is why they train for months without seeing any results. They’re not forcing their bodies to learn how to jump higher.

  • Ivan Nondolesmono

    The repetitions for doing plyometric are between 10-12 and just do 2- 3 sets??? In that point I must give my best.. Is that right?? hmm.. then.. How long will I see the result^^?? Thx.

  • Patrick

    Correct, for most exercises. Some of the lower intensity exercises like ankle bounces can be cranked up to 50 reps due to the fact that they’re less intense in general. However, if you’re doing explosive exercises (which you should focus most of your effort on) like squat jumps you really only need to do 10-12 reps.

    The time that it takes to see results varies from person to person. From my experience I can usually start to notice that I’m jumping higher within 1 week, but this isn’t true for everyone.

  • Ivan Nondolesmono

    Does the weight of my body affect my abilities to jump higher?? If it does affect, my question is what kind of diet I should eat? In 1 week, for maximum result, should I do the plyometric everyday or 3 times in a week is enough? Thx..

  • Patrick

    Hey Ivan,

    I would just do plyometrics 3 days per week. If you do more than that you’ll be overtraining your body and you could actually lose inches on your vertical jump.

    Weight can definitely have an affect on your jumping ability. This is especially true if you have lots of fat weight. Try to eat lots of high protein foods (fish, eggs, lean ground beef, etc.) to ensure that you don’t lose muscle mass from working out. The other thing you should do is avoid eating carbohydrates at night. People tend to gain a lot of weight because they eat snacks at night that have lots of carbs. When you eat carbs it should be first thing in the morning (breakfast cereals, oatmeal, etc.) so that your body can use those carbs throughout the day. And as a general and pretty obvious rule, try to avoid eating sugary stuff like candy. I’ve found that sugar is one of the main culprits when it comes to gaining fat. Don’t completely avoid it, just limit your intake.

  • Ivan Nondolesmono

    hmm.. thx for the long long answer.. hehehe.. just kidding… btw… is it enough in each practice if I just do 4 types of plyometrics or I need more?? I do tuck jump, box jump, lunge, and ankle bounce with one leg… is it enough…

  • Ivan Nondolesmono

    answer please…

  • Patrick

    That’s definitely a good combination. If you get bored with doing the same thing all the time just throw in a new exercise.

  • Ivan Nondolesmono

    Is the depth jump a better exercise than tuck jump??

  • Patrick

    I would say that they are both good exercises to use. Again, if you get bored with your workout try to switch up the exercises. One thing to keep in mind with depth jumps is that you should try to do them on a soft surface like grass. This will help keep you from injuring your feet after many repetitions.

  • Ivan Nondolesmono

    In the jumping program that I have seen, after three weeks they will change the exercises. Is it necessary or just to make the doer ( the one that buy the program) doesn’t bored with the exercises??

  • Patrick

    Switching up exercises is a good idea both in terms of preventing boredom and keeping the body guessing. The human body is very good at adapting and many times athletes will hit a plateau if they keep doing the same routine. I believe the general rule is to change up your exercises every 3 to 4 weeks, but I don’t think you have to follow this exactly. If your jump program is telling you to change up the exercises then I would do it.

  • Ivan Nondolesmono

    hmm I have a question.. Why should we rest at least for 1 minute between each repititions?? thx for the explanation that you will give to us…

  • Patrick

    You need to rest in order to let your body recover before the next set. If you don’t have enough energy to perform the next set then you won’t be able to give 100% effort on that set.

  • Ivan Nondolesmono

    no connection with our CNS then?? hehe

  • Patrick

    Actually, I believe there is a connection between our CNS and switching up the exercises. Switching exercises teaches our bodies to jump in new ways. This results in changes in our CNS that help make our body more efficient at jumping. Pretty interesting stuff.

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