Drop sets are torturous.

I love them. What does that say about me?

I am a freak. A freak who loves to feel the burn.


I often use drop sets when working on machines. I don’t use many machines when it comes to strength training, with the exception of the lat pulldown and miscellaneous leg machines. It is easy to drop the weight on machines, as long as they are not plate-loaded.

However, when it comes to doing drop sets with dumbbells, I literally throw drop the weight. Working out in the morning provides the benefit of having the gym to myself, so it you are about to go throw some dumbbells around, make sure no one gets hurt.


If you aren’t familiar with drop sets, they simply require the ‘lowering’ of weight, immediately followed by more repetitions with less weight or no weight at all. No rest involved.

Drop sets are a fun way for me to keep my strength training spicy.


Dumbbell Drop Sets for Legs

Walking lunges: 20 reps with 20lb dumbbells, 20 reps with no added weight

Side lunges w/ tap to the floor: 20 reps with 20lb dumbbells, 10 reps with 10lb dumbbells

Squats with stability ball: 15 reps with 25lb dumbbells, 25 reps with no added weight

Stiff-legged deadlifts: 15 reps with 20lb dumbbells, 10 reps with 15lb dumbbells


Have you ever used drop sets in a workout? Love ‘em or hate ‘em?

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15 Responses to “Fitness Kick Start: Drop Sets.”

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    1
    Sheri — July 27, 2010 @ 5:04 pm

    Love ‘em! I usually do them on the machines but have done it with dumbbells too. Not quite up to your drop set rountine listed above but maybe someday soon!

    Reply

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    2
    Sheri — July 27, 2010 @ 5:05 pm

    Love ‘em! I usually do them on the machines but have done it with dumbbells too. Not quite up to your drop set routine listed above but maybe someday soon!

    Reply

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    3
    Mellissa — July 27, 2010 @ 5:32 pm

    I love how drop sets leave your whole body feeling like goober :) I love to be EXHAUSTED after a workout.

    Reply

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    4
    Naomi(onefitfoodie) — July 27, 2010 @ 5:59 pm

    Squat w a stability ball an 25 lb dumbell? How does that work? And I love drop sets! Fatiguing the muscle is great!

    Reply

    • Jessica — July 27th, 2010 @ 6:28 pm

      Ball against the wall, dumbbells in each hand!

      Reply

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    5
    Tina — July 27, 2010 @ 7:44 pm

    I’m a sadist who simply cannot wait to do workouts with drop sets again. They are killer and really do work to push you.

    Reply

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    6
    Katie — July 27, 2010 @ 7:56 pm

    I’ve done these, but always called it a “reverse pyramid” – I like the name “drop sets” better. :-)

    Reply

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    7
    Wei-Wei — July 27, 2010 @ 10:51 pm

    Feel the BURN! You are insane. :D

    Wei-Wei

    Reply

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    8
    Jackie (Peaces of Earth) — July 27, 2010 @ 11:59 pm

    I have never heard of drop sets! Sounds insane! I must try. :)

    Reply

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    9
    Liana — July 28, 2010 @ 2:57 am

    Drop Sets are a great way to keep you interested in weight training…so important but sometimes I’m too bored to get them done! Well done set…I’m going to attempt it on leg day (Saturday)

    Reply

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    10
    april — July 28, 2010 @ 5:53 am

    Love them!! I think they helped me gain a lot of strength too!

    Reply

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    11
    Kacy — July 28, 2010 @ 6:26 am

    I don’t know that I’ve ever even heard of them – but I do know that you’re super hard core if you can do that!

    Reply

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    12
    Ern — July 28, 2010 @ 7:59 pm

    They’re HARD (and according to my trainer, apparently the secret weapon to getting the ripped arms I crave). Any tips on pushing through and getting over the mental block?

    Reply

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    13
    Natalie (The Sweets Life) — July 29, 2010 @ 12:52 pm

    never heard of these–thanks for sharing! i need to beef up my arms :)

    Reply

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