Drop-Dead Drop Sets for Advanced Lifters


Registered User
May 13, 2016
Reaction score
Get Shredded!

4 Challenging Methods for New Gains​

The drop set method has been around forever, but you’ve never seen it used like this! Try out these tough, muscle-building workouts.

Drop sets are a staple in most hypertrophy programs for a good reason: they work. You go from one exercise, technique, or load to another as you fatigue. Each transition you make is progressively easier so that you can extend the set with more reps. This allows you to increase overall workout intensity and create a more significant overload stimulus.

Drop sets also allow you to add more volume, repeatedly pushing you to the threshold of failure. Training near the edges of failure 18 and beyond recruits greater amounts of muscle fibers necessary for maximum growth potential. Oh yeah, and drop sets provide you with crazy pumps.

Four Types of Drop Sets​

1. Mechanical Drop Sets​

Train a specific movement or pattern, then manipulate the position or exercise to make it easier as you fatigue. Here’s an example (see video above for demo):

Pressing Drop Set​

A1.Banded Dumbbell Chest Press, Feet Upfailure
A2.Banded Dumbbell Chest Press, Feet Downfailure
A3.Band-Resisted Push-Upfailure
A4.Standard Push-Upfailure
Start with the banded dumbbell chest press with your feet up and do as many reps as possible. Then put your legs down to aid in greater force production and continue to push out additional reps. This slight change of body positioning and use of leg drive allows you to do a few more reps of the same exercise. From there, immediately move to band-resisted push-ups to train the same movement pattern. Go to failure, then remove the band and hit as many reps as possible.

Here’s another drop set where you use the same weight the whole time:

Lateral Raise Drop Set​

B1.Seated Dead-Stop Lateral Raisefailure
B2.Standing Strict Lateral Raisefailure
B3.Standing Lateral Raise with Body Englishfailure
For this one, you extend the set using the same movement but make the lift easier as you fatigue by changing your technique.

Start from a seated position with a partial range of motion and dead stop 49 on every rep. Go to failure. Then move immediately to a standing position with strict form. Go to failure. Finish by going to failure with a similar standing position, but alter your technique and add some momentum to make it slightly easier.

2. Plate-Loaded Strip Drop Set​

This is a slightly different way to achieve the same effect. Complete as many reps as possible (or determine a specific rep number), then immediately drop plates off the bar and continue to work through each set as you lighten the load. Repeat until you’re completely done.

If you have a training partner, you can do this without having to re-rack each time and strip the plates off yourself. In the video, I’m using a belt squat machine.

3. Pin-Loaded Drop Set​

Use this strategy with machines, like a pulldown. Drop weight quickly by simply moving the pin to lighter loads immediately upon failure. Continue to rep out at the lighter load until fatigue or failure hits. Keep dropping to achieve more reps, volume, and a wicked pump.

4. Chain-Loaded Drop Set​

You can also use chains to add load and then quickly remove them once you’ve reached failure. See the pull-up example in the video.


Board Rep
Mar 12, 2022
Reaction score
I found the information and insights valuable for my training goals. I appreciate the practical tips provided and look forward to incorporating drop sets into my routine.