Best rep range for muscle growth – Gain muscle as fast as possible

By | November 12, 2014

Best rep range for muscle growth – Gain muscle as fast as possible

People often wonder what is the most effective way to build lean muscle. Well the right answer to that is lifting weights. Those who try to build muscle with only bodyweight exercises are really limiting their full potential.

In here I’m going to break you down the rep ranges of weight training and tell you the best rep range for muscle growth.

Important point to know about is the “Time Under Tension”.  This basically means how long the muscle stays contracted in one set of certain reps. And when scientists have measured the the best rep ranges for building muscle they’ve used Time Under Tension as their measurement. So lets get into it…


Anything above 15 repetitions is considered to be linked so called “muscle endurance” which means that you ain’t really driving for hyperthophy or strength gains in the muscle. This is mostly used in endurance demanding sports when trying to improve the athletic perfomance of the sport itself for example a boxers punch.

The problem here is that the workload of the weight is not enough to stimulate the fast-twitch type 2 muscle fiber. And that type of muscle is the one where the major growth potential lies and to “call” these muscle fibers to work you need weight atleast 75% of your one rep max.

However this been said this rep range still serves a great purpose. For starting a new 2-3 month workout cycle it would be a good idea for the first few weeks to build the endurance and proper form with this rep range.


This range couples somewhat high repetitions with heavy weights. Usually the Time Under Tension in sets in this category fall in between 30-60 seconds to complete, which is the “sweet spot” for muscle hypertophy.

This rep range is believed to be the best for maximizing muscle gains. The activation of fast-twitch type 2 muscle fibers is the most efficient in this group.

Even though this is the best rep range in order to build muscle you should not be grinding only 8-12 reps per set. See, our bodies are made to adapt to different things, the more you do something specific the more your body get accustomed to the activity. And this can be counterpoductive when the aim is to build muscle.

The idea of building muscle is basically tear the existing muscle tissue and repair it. And if you stick month after month to same workout routine with same exercises and rep ranges your body starts to find ways to not to break the tissue down and that will hinder your muscle growth.

So that being said sticking to only one rep range will hinder your gains. Variance and keeping your body feeded with new stimulus you’ll get more results!


The best range to gain maximum strength. Usually around 85-95% of your 1 rep max. These ranges also build muscle but a bit different way than the Moderate range. Usually guys who structure their workout purely on strength they develop really hard looking and dense muscle. For example Bruce Lee’s physique would be good example, the muscles were really dense and hard and he was quite strong for his size.

You can be really freaking strong and still stay quite small. Some powerlifters who weigh around 60kg might deadlift 3, 4 or even 5 times their own body weight.


I personally think you should be incorporating all of these rep ranges. The way I’m doing it now is I have a 3 month peaking workout plan. First month I will do 15+ reps, second month 8-12 and final month peak from 5 reps to 2-3 reps per set. This way you’re targeting all the possible ranges and keep your body from getting too used to the certain ranges which will yield better gains in muscle size and strength.

There are many other things that you should take into consideration when trying to build musle and strength.

If you want to dig a bit deeper and know everything there is need to know about strength training and building muscle, check out my review on Sean Nalewanyj’s program HERE

Did you find this article helpful? You got questions in mind regarding the topic? Please drop me a comment below so I can hear your opinion!


– Jesse 🙂

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