So if you are on a development plateau, if you take your gym training very seriously, and, if you don’t mind some extra suffering, negative repetition training is another of the many techniques you can use to get out. of that state of stagnation.

Let’s see what it is and how to carry it out.


Let’s review the topic of repetitions a bit: A repetition has two phases: a POSITIVE where the contraction occurs and the load rises; and a NEGATIVE where it returns to the resting position, generally against gravity and where the muscle is stretched.

The technique of negative repetitions, or negative training, is the use of an eccentric, slow and controlled movement just in the negative phase of the repetition; which will stimulate muscle growth and prepare the central nervous system (CNS) to handle heavier loads.

That is, an eccentric contraction of 3-15 seconds is performed, to return the weight to the starting position.

Moreover, in certain cases, this return of weight, or eccentric approach, does not imply positive repetitions because it works with loads very close to 90% of your 1RM.


Negative repetition training is useful and only recommended for bodybuilders and advanced athletes who wish to increase their muscle mass through THE CLASSIC MUSCLE OVERLOAD TECHNIQUE.

Remember that during the overload of a muscle, small tears are created in the fibers and when they are regenerated they make it bigger and bigger, building bigger and bigger muscles after each session.

They should be used in case of suffering a STAGNATION IN TRAINING, and only in short periods of time as a complement to your classic routine.

And again, only in advanced people as it requires having a good base condition to receive their benefits and avoid possible injuries.


If you are going to use the negative repetition technique, it should be done at the beginning of the training, so you can have the advantage of applying more force since the muscles are not tired.

Regarding weight, although an advanced lifter, when using the negative repetition technique, can withstand up to 130% of its 1RM (the maximum amount of weight it can lift in one repetition) my recommendation is that you start with a single repetition and with lighter loads, close to 90% of your 1RM.

By challenging the muscles in this way. Your muscles will respond by rebuilding more fast-contracting and stronger muscle fibers so they can face the next challenge.

Of course, keep in mind to use or a device that allows you to lock the bar at the end of the descent like the Smith machine, or ask someone for help to accompany you in the positive repetition and then leave you with the repetition effort negative.

For each exercise, each negative repetition should last between 3-15 seconds.

If you cannot resist the weight for at least three seconds, you will have to remove some load, and if with five seconds you find it light, you can add more weight.


You should not replace your normal workouts with negative series, but integrate them into your current routine to add intensity and mix things up a bit.

The training with negative repetitions is extreme, you will feel a feeling of high intensity not only on the gym day but also feel the effort made in the days following the training.

In this sense it is even more important to give your body the necessary rest both between sets and after the training day:

Between sets, you can allow yourself about three minutes of rest before taking the weights again.

While rest periods between training sessions can be up to a full week for each muscle group.

Be prepared to resist the muscle pain of the negative training that will be as intense as your first workouts in the gym were.

Although as usual, it is very likely that you will get used to it over time and the severity of the discomfort will decrease.

Now, there is an important point that you must understand and keep in mind. As a result of the increasing breakdown of muscle fibers, there are many enzymes, potassium, and myoglobin that will be released into the bloodstream.

And if there is too much myoglobin installed in the kidneys, they can collapse, which can lead to dangerously high levels of potassium in the blood, causing possible cardiac complications.

For this reason, they should ensure you maintain proper hydration, drinking at least 2.5 liters of water the day they used the negative repetition technique.

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