Indicator Sets


Indicator Sets are a great tool to use to measure your progress, particularly strength, which in turn is a good indicator of hypertrophy which is what most of us are out to achieve. 


This would be a particularly good technique for those of you who do not write their workouts down in a log book (something that we advocate strongly, see previous articles to see why). Basically, an indicator set is a set done at the end of your workout for a particular body part and will tell you if you are progressively getting stronger over a period of time.


So at the end of your chest session you would choose a weight that you think you could lift for 6 rep max with good form and perform the lift to failure whether that be for 3, 4, or 6 reps. You would write this weight and reps down and then repeat the process again in 2-4 weeks hoping that the number of reps you’re able to perform has increased, as soon as you can do 20 reps with the weight you will need to increase the weight again.


Like I said previously this is a great way to monitor your strength gains and should be a good indicator of new muscle growth, the two go hand in hand to some degree.


I personally use this technique on all the large body parts every 3 weeks just to make sure I am progressing in the right direction and stick to the big compound lifts: Squat, Deadlifts, Bench Press, military press, Barbell Rows. Although it could be performed on any exercise.


This is just one of many techniques that we teach at performance PT to make sure that you continue to make progress each and every week. Ask yourself this question: “when the last time was you or your personal trainer measured and evaluated what you where doing in the gym?” If this has never been done then you seriously need to consider what you are doing with your time and money. If you’re not measuring and evaluating on a regular basis you’re wasting your time.




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