German Volume Training For Mass

German volume training for mass

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by – Mass is often considered the holy grail of weight training. You try lifting heavy, lifting light, high reps, low reps – always trying to find the perfect routine. The truth is you’ll need to try many different routines, and constantly change your exercises to continue growing.

If you’re trying to gain lean mass, one training concept that absolutely needs to be in your workout rotation is German Volume Training.

Here’s what you should know about using German volume training for mass.

What Is German Volume Training?

The origins of German Volume Training (GVT) dates back to the 1970’s as an offseason program for the national olympic powerlifting team. The value of the training system became apparent when many of the powerlifters ended up gaining 10 pounds of lean muscle mass by the end of the 12 week program.

Today, German volume training (also known as the 10 sets method) is widely used by power-lifters, Olympic athletes, and professional bodybuilders.

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How Do You Do It?

The concept of GVT is actually pretty simple. You’re trying to emphasize constant stress over an extended period of time. You won’t be switching exercises every three sets, or fumbling with three different sets of dumbbells like most routines.

GVT can be applied to all exercises, but for best results you’ll want include the primary Olympic lifts as well as other compound movements.

  • 1) Pick your exercise
  • 2) Use 60% of your 1 rep max
  • 3): Perform 10 sets of 10 reps

Rest 90 seconds between each set. Sets 1-3 are going to feel too easy, but don’t add weight or reduce your rest period. Keep your weight, reps, and rest cycles constant.

Sets 8-10 will be very challenging if you’ve never done this type of routine before.

Over the course of the 12 week program, you’ll want to track your progress and make adjustments based on your completed workouts. The goal is to complete 10 sets of 10 reps but you may not be able to complete all reps your first few weeks.

If, for example, your workout looked like this on sets 8-10:

Set 8: 8 reps
Set 9: 7 reps
Last Set: 6 reps

You would continue using your current weight until you’re able to complete all ten sets, and all ten reps. Once you’re strong enough to complete the entire workout, you can then increase the weight by 5% the next time you work the same muscle group.

See Also: How to add 1″ to your biceps

Example Workouts


Flat Bench Press: 10 sets, 10 reps
Barbell Shoulder Press: 10 sets, 10 reps


Pull Ups: 10 sets, 10 reps
Barbell Curls: 10 sets, 10 reps


Squats: 10 reps, 10 reps
Skull Crushers: 10 sets, 10 reps

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