using OPL loads, compared with the 85% of 1-RM loads. 8 Another potential method to reduce the fatigue associated with the conditioning activity is through cluster sets 16 : the inclusion of short rest periods between repetitions within a given set. Cluster-set configuration is associated with the
Antonio Dello Iacono, Marco Beato and Israel Halperin
James J. Tufano, Jenny A. Conlon, Sophia Nimphius, Lee E. Brown, Harry G. Banyard, Bryce D. Williamson, Leslie G. Bishop, Amanda J. Hopper and G. Gregory Haff
To determine the effects of intraset rest frequency and training load on muscle time under tension, external work, and external mechanical power output during back-squat protocols with similar changes in velocity.
Twelve strength-trained men (26.0 ± 4.2 y, 83.1 ± 8.8 kg, 1.75 ± 0.06 m, 1.88:0.19 one-repetition-maximum [1RM] body mass) performed 3 sets of 12 back squats using 3 different set structures: traditional sets with 60% 1RM (TS), cluster sets of 4 with 75% 1RM (CS4), and cluster sets of 2 with 80% 1RM (CS2). Repeated-measures ANOVAs were used to determine differences in peak force (PF), mean force (MF), peak velocity (PV), mean velocity (MV), peak power (PP), mean power (MP), total work (TW), total time under tension (TUT), percentage mean velocity loss (%MVL), and percentage peak velocity loss (%PVL) between protocols.
Compared with TS and CS4, CS2 resulted in greater MF, TW, and TUT in addition to less MV, PV, and MP. Similarly, CS4 resulted in greater MF, TW, and TUT in addition to less MV, PV, and MP than TS did. There were no differences between protocols for %MVL, %PVL, PF, or PP.
These data show that the intraset rest provided in CS4 and CS2 allowed for greater external loads than with TS, increasing TW and TUT while resulting in similar PP and %VL. Therefore, cluster-set structures may function as an alternative method to traditional strength- or hypertrophy-oriented training by increasing training load without increasing %VL or decreasing PP.
Eliseo Iglesias-Soler, Eduardo Carballeira, Tania Sánchez-Otero, Xian Mayo and Miguel Fernández-del-Olmo
To analyze performance during the execution of a maximum number of repetitions (MNR) in a cluster-set configuration.
Nine judokas performed 2 sessions of parallel squats with a load corresponding to 4-repetition maximum (4RM) with a traditional-training (TT) and cluster-training (CT) set configuration. The TT consisted of 3 sets of repetitions leading to failure and 3 min of rest between sets. In the CT the MNR was performed with a rest interval between repetitions (45.44 ± 11.89 s). The work-to-rest ratio was similar for CT and TT.
MNR in CT was 45.5 ± 32 repetitions and was 9.33 ± 1.87 times the volume in TT. There was a tendency for the average mean propulsive velocity (MPV) to be higher in CT (0.39 ± 0.04 vs 0.36 ± 0.04 m/s for CT and TT, respectively, P = .054, standardized mean difference [d] = 0.57). The average MPV was higher in CT for a similar number of repetitions (0.44 ± 0.08 vs 0.36 ± 0.04 m/s for CT and TT, respectively, P = .006, d = 1.33). The number of repetitions in TT was correlated with absolute 4RM load (r = –.719, P = .031) but not in CT (r = –.273, P = .477).
A cluster-set configuration allows for a higher number of repetitions and improved sustainability of mechanical performance. CT, unlike TT, was not affected by absolute load, suggesting an improvement of training volume with high absolute loads.
James J. Tufano, Jenny A. Conlon, Sophia Nimphius, Lee E. Brown, Laurent B. Seitz, Bryce D. Williamson and G. Gregory Haff
To compare the effects of a traditional set structure and 2 cluster set structures on force, velocity, and power during back squats in strength-trained men.
Twelve men (25.8 ± 5.1 y, 1.74 ± 0.07 m, 79.3 ± 8.2 kg) performed 3 sets of 12 repetitions at 60% of 1-repetition maximum using 3 different set structures: traditional sets (TS), cluster sets of 4 (CS4), and cluster sets of 2 (CS2).
When averaged across all repetitions, peak velocity (PV), mean velocity (MV), peak power (PP), and mean power (MP) were greater in CS2 and CS4 than in TS (P < .01), with CS2 also resulting in greater values than CS4 (P < .02). When examining individual sets within each set structure, PV, MV, PP, and MP decreased during the course of TS (effect sizes 0.28–0.99), whereas no decreases were noted during CS2 (effect sizes 0.00–0.13) or CS4 (effect sizes 0.00–0.29).
These results demonstrate that CS structures maintain velocity and power, whereas TS structures do not. Furthermore, increasing the frequency of intraset rest intervals in CS structures maximizes this effect and should be used if maximal velocity is to be maintained during training.
Jason D. Stone, Adam C. King, Shiho Goto, John D. Mata, Joseph Hannon, James C. Garrison, James Bothwell, Andrew R. Jagim, Margaret T. Jones and Jonathan M. Oliver
training method, termed cluster sets (CS), attenuates decrements in barbell velocity and power output observed during TS configurations. 3 – 5 When utilized for long periods during training, CS also elicits greater improvements in strength and power compared with TS. 22 CS also result in less variability
Justin J. Merrigan, James J. Tufano, Jonathan M. Oliver, Jason B. White, Jennifer B. Fields and Margaret T. Jones
cluster sets (intraset rest from additional rest time), reduced the loss of velocity and power. 1 , 12 However, the majority of the intraset rest studies involved men, bringing into question whether or not women would respond in a similar fashion. Men consistently have more muscle mass than women, which
Jeffrey D. Simpson, Ethan M. Stewart, Anastasia M. Mosby, David M. Macias, Harish Chander and Adam C. Knight
infrared cameras was used to collect lower-extremity kinematic data. Retroreflective cluster sets made of orthoplast were attached to the participants’ posterior pelvis and bilaterally on the thigh, shank, and dorsal foot using double-sided tape (Figure 2 ). Therapeutic wraps with velcro were placed
Harry G. Banyard, Kazunori Nosaka, Alex D. Vernon and G. Gregory Haff
. PubMed ID: 28182500 doi:10.1123/ijspp.2016-0627 10.1123/ijspp.2016-0627 28182500 19. Tufano J , Conlon J , Nimphius S , et al . Cluster sets permit greater mechanical stress without decreasing relative velocity . Int J Sports Physiol Perform . 2017 ; 12 : 463 – 469 . PubMed ID: 27617387 doi
Harry G. Banyard, James J. Tufano, Jose Delgado, Steve W. Thompson and Kazunori Nosaka
. Tufano JJ , Conlon J , Nimphius S , et al . Cluster sets: permitting greater mechanical stress without decreasing relative velocity . Int J Sports Physiol Perform . 2017 ; 12 : 463 – 469 . PubMed ID: 27617387 doi:10.1123/ijspp.2015-0738 10.1123/ijspp.2015-0738 27617387 20. Tufano JJ
Jonathon Weakley, Carlos Ramirez-Lopez, Shaun McLaren, Nick Dalton-Barron, Dan Weaving, Ben Jones, Kevin Till and Harry Banyard
cluster sets during high-volume back squats . Int J Sport Phys Perf . 2016 ; 11 : 885 – 892 . 24. Oliver JM , Kreutzer A , Jenke SC , Phillips MD , Mitchell JB , Jones MT . Velocity drives greater power observed during back squat using cluster sets . J Strength Cond Res . 2016 ; 30