Scope of Study: Bodybuilding Program

Charles Poliquin’s Popular Muscle Building Program and Volume Curriculum, newly published by Rudy Coya.

German Volume Training is a muscle building program proposed by Canadian trainer and physical trainer Charles Poliquin in the July 1996 issue of Muscle Media 2000. Since then, this article has become a classic, has been widely used on the Internet, and probably contributed to Charles Poliquin’s popularity as a trainer on the Internet.

Ten sets of ten repetitions

Ten sets of ten repetitions are the cornerstone of the program.

Remember that Gilles Cometti, French university expert at UFR STAPS in Dijon for physical fitness and bodybuilding, recommends ten sets of ten repetitions in his book Les Méthodes Modernes De Musculation as the best protocol for hypertrophy. This was then taken as lessons for BEAC HACUMESE, now BPJEPS AGFF.

But Gilles Cometti pulls the 10×10 figure out of his hat a bit (see this discussion on the SuperPhysics forums) … On the other hand, he recommended 10×10 at 75% of his 1RM, which is impractical. Finally, he did not indicate the amount of exercise per muscle group.

Charles Poliquin offers 10×10 60% of his 1RM (or more simply with a load that you can lift 20 times in a row), which is achievable by most people and makes a lot more sense than 10×10 75% rm. Besides, Charles Poliquin’s program is clear, easy to understand and enjoyable to execute (good workload!), Hence its popularity.

The name German Volume Training was given to Poliquin because the Germans used this type of protocol (10 series per exercise) in the 1970s.

Who is this program for?

10×10 is based on cumulative fatigue in total resistance to heavy training, intense training, or Dorian Yates’ bodybuilding program.

Experience has shown that this type of program, based on cumulative fatigue and nervous system release, works well on people who are quite “hardy”, but less well on people who are “explosive” (be careful, you can tolerate from below ) body and explosives with the upper body).

To find out what type you have, make a streak for 85% of your 1WD. So, if you have a maximum of 100 kg with bench press, you are doing 85 kg series. Rehearse, don’t rest with open arms. Then take a look at this table:

number of repetitions profile3explosive4Explosive5-6Mixed7-8Durable9-10Very hardyNote that it is also not set in stone. Most people are blended, but an explosive person can become blended with learning and vice versa. In general, explosive people tend to gain strength and muscle quickly with short or intense streaks. A very hardy person depletes his nervous system in too short bursts and builds little muscle mass.

Training Scope: Speed ​​of Exercise

Charles Poliquin is not a fan of SuperSlow, but in each of his programs he systematically ensures the speed of the exercises that he considers important.

2020 means: 2 seconds eccentric (bench press or deadlift descent), 0 seconds support (chest bar with bench press), 2 seconds concentric (lifting with bench press or deadlift), 0 seconds hold (at the top of the bench press movement).

40X0 means: 4 seconds eccentric, 0 seconds maintenance, concentric explosion phase, 0 seconds maintenance.

In another article, he points out that the confirmed person is interested in exploding in the concentric phase, but in the original article he does not mention this. In all cases, the eccentric phase is systematically slowed down (for those who have read our article on elastic bands to optimize bodybuilding with barbells and dumbbells and in particular the part devoted to muscle elasticity, there will be some confusion …)

However, using these tariffs has several advantages:

  • 1) with series of medium length, the duration of the series is about 40-60 seconds, laying in the anaerobic milk pathway, promoting muscle growth
  • 2) reduces the risk of injury

Scope of Study: Programs

6 weeks

  • Day # 1 (chest, back)

10 g Super BCAA and 30 g Supercarbohydrates

Light Dumbbell Bench Press: 10 x 10, 40X0, alternating with a convex row on the back: 10 x 10, 40X0

Slope Spread: 3 × 10-12, 3020, alternating with one-arm rowing with a dumbbell: 3 × 10-12, 3020

40 g Vegetable Super Protein

  • Day # 2 (thighs, abdominals)

10 g Super BCAA and 30 g Supercarbohydrates

Squats: 10 x 10, 4020 alternating with extended leg curls (outside legs): 10 x 10, 40X0

Increased knee lift (at pulley): 3 × 15-20, 2020 alternating with
Sitting calves: 3 × 15-20, 2020

40 g Vegetable Super Protein


  • Day 4 (arms, shoulders)

10 g Super BCAA and 30 g Supercarbohydrates

Rigid drop grip: 10 × 10, 40X0, alternating with oblique curl (hammer handle): 10 × 10, 40X0

Poultry on an incline bench: 3 × 10-12, 20X0, alternating with a side lift with dumbbells (sitting): 3 × 10-12, 20X0

40 g Vegetable Super Protein


3 weeks

Same program as above, but replaces 10×10 with harder work, 4-6 sets of 6-8 reps.

6 weeks

  • Day # 1 (chest, back):

10 g Super BCAA and 30 g Supercarbohydrates

Incline Dumbbell Bench Press: 10 × 6, 50X0 alternating with a wide forward movement: 10 × 6, 50X0

Lying spread: 3×6, 3010
Back rowing (with Ez): 3×6, 3010

40 g Vegetable Super Protein

  • Day # 2 (thighs, abdominals):

10 g Super BCAA and 30 g Supercarbohydrates

Deadlift: 10 × 6, 50X0, alternating with: • Extension leg flexion (outside leg): 10 × 6, 50X0

Oblique crunch: 3 × 12-15, 3030 alternating with
Machine calves: 3 × 12-15, 3030

40 g Super Plant Protein


  • Day # 4 (arms, shoulders):

10 g Super BCAA and 30 g Supercarbohydrates

Rigid Bench Press Grip (with Chains): 10×6, 50X0
Table Crunch (Ez Bar, Tight Grip): 10×6, 50X0

L – Flying on a low pulley: 3 × 10-12, 3010 alternating with
Bird on an incline bench: 3 × 10-12, 20X0

40 g Super Plant Protein



  • Rest time between series of large exercises is 90 seconds, possibly 120 seconds. So you do a series of dips, 90 seconds rest, series of pull-ups, 90 seconds rest, series of dips, etc.
  • For small exercises, the rest time is set to 60 seconds.
  • Please note that each muscle group works every 6 days. The frequency of 5-6 days is often repeated in Charles Poliquin’s programs for muscle hypertrophy (even if it is restrictive in terms of planning, because training days are not fixed from one week to the next)
  • All exercises are performed in a super series, another “classic” program by Charles Poliquin.
  • Once you are successful at 10×10, you will slightly increase the load on the next session
  • For 10×6, use 70% of your 1RM or a weight you can lift 12x
  • No forced or negative repetition
  • Do not hold the weight too high to maintain muscle tension.


Recently, going back to German volumes, Poliquin suggests keeping the frequency for 6 days, but moving on to two main exercises for each muscle group (which is reminiscent of the DoggCrapp strength training program, which turned it into three exercises or Michael Gundill’s Delavier 2 method). For example: incline dumbbell bench press day # 1, bench press day # 6, incline dumbbell bench press day # 11, bench press day # 16).

Instead of 10 × 10, it also invites experienced athletes (and perhaps more focused fitness than bodybuilding) to work in 10 × 5, 10 × 4, 10 × 3, 10 × 5, 10 × 4, 10 × 3 to remind you of the waves of the Mark Casabianchi cycle in our Bench Press Progress article.

Some authors have also hacked the program, claiming it is a volumetric workout in Germany, but using 10 sets of 10 reps per muscle group (for example: 4×10 bench press, 4×10 incline bench press and 2×10 au on the pulley opposite the high level). For Charles Poliquin, this distorts a program that loses its effectiveness.

Rudy Koya’s opinion

The benefits of 10×10 are small.

While this program is well-loaded, repeating the same move for Series 10 can be boring and quickly nudge you off.

While this is primarily a training for beginners, you will understand the little interest I have in talking about this program if it forces you to sacrifice your technique.

Also, making 10 kits with the same load is like making at least 6 kits that are too simple, which is actually unnecessary heating, especially when the kits are so “long” and the load is so light. Thus, you are wasting time doing something unproductive.

Finally, when you know that a beginner must first of all gain strength, what interest is it in using this program if she does not want to get out of the routine from time to time?

However, if we use the evolution of this program, it can advance anyone, as I will show you below.


If we apply 10×10 evolutions, the program can be very effective. We already start with a heavier load so as not to get bored during the episode. We then select the right exercises to do 10 sets without risk.

  • We alternate 10 × 6 – 10 × 5 – 10 × 4, drawing inspiration from the cycle of Marc Casabianchi
  • We forget the concept of speed of execution, because it is useless to slow down the negative too much
  • The frequency of muscle training remains the same, namely every 5 days
  • Finally, recovery between episodes is about 1 min 30

And here we are with an effective program!

  • Monday (chest, back, biceps)

10 g Super BCAA and 30 g Supercarbohydrates

Bench press: 10 × 6-5-4
Pullover: 3 × 15

Pulling force, supination without arch: 10 × 6-5-4. Oblique bend: 3 × 12

Crunch: 3 × 12

40 g Vegetable Super Protein

10 g Super BCAA and 30 g Super Carbs

Incline Leg Press: 10 × 6-5-4
Slit (with dumbbells): 3 × 12

Sitting on the leg: 10 × 6-5-4
Calves with thigh press: 3 × 12

40 g Vegetable Super Protein


  • Thursday (trapeze, back, triceps, abdominals)

10 g Super BCAA and 30 g Supercarbohydrates

Rowing on a T-bar: 10 × 6-5-4. High Pulley Traction Front: 3 × 12

Hard Bench Press Grip: 10 × 6-5-4. Neck lengthening to one arm: 3 × 12

Abdominal workout: 3 series, as long as possible

40 g Vegetable Super Protein


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