How to Do Forced Reps in Strength Training.

The forced reps technique is an effective strength training strategy to increase muscle mass.

The first time I encountered forced reps was while working with a trainer in Sydney, Australia. I was performing my final set of barbell bicep curls and approaching muscle failure. Just as I was about to complete my last rep, the trainer grabbed the barbell with two hands and shouted for me to continue. By assisting the movement, he was lifting some of the weight for me - and so I continued to curl. As my muscles continued to reach fatigue, the trainer provided a heavier and heavier spot - and so I continued and continued and continued until he was doing most of the work.

When we finally stopped, my arms were shaking worse than the east coast earthquake. Moreover, it took me days to recover.

Needless to say, the technique is called forced reps. And while you do need the help of a trusted spotter, forced reps can be performed with many barbell exercises - most commonly, the bench press. Once you reach failure, have the spotter lift some of the weight for you. As you continue to fatigue, he lifts more and more of the weight. You can eek out an extra 20 or 30 repetitions without any rest.

The idea behind forced sets is similar to that of drop sets. By lightening the weight, you’re able to move past your initial muscle failure and eventually approach absolute muscle failure. Forced sets tear deep into muscle tissue and thus result in increased muscle growth - and they are true shock to your system.

But a word of caution: Forced reps are extremely taxing and shouldn’t be used for each set. In fact, after completing the set of forced reps in Sydney, the trainer told me that I shouldn’t do it again for several weeks. So while they’re a great muscle building technique, don’t abuse forced reps in your routine; use sparingly.

About Davey Wavey

Davey Wavey is a certified personal trainer and YouTube sensation with more than 250 million video views. For Davey's fitness tips and secrets, sign up for his free monthly newsletter - or download any of his affordable and effective workout programs.


  1. He’s hot, but i really hate big tattoos :/

    • christopher says:

      that would be Jesse Pavelka-of Diet hott Texas dude-now in So Cal.a total inspiration.athletic lean muscle-what many of us aspire to.this dude is mans and womans best friend-right next to Davey Wavey-of course.

  2. Robert Dark says:

    Thank Davey. Since I have a workout partner now, I think I will give this technique a try.

    I like the pic, tattoos and all. Its funny some tattoos just don’t do much, but if they draw attention to a particular body part (like this guys draws attention to his shoulders) they look great.


  3. All the best things come from Sydney Australia. We miss you Davey and want you to come home again soon. X

  4. Hi Davey

    what are your thoughts on those vibration platform machines? are they of any benefit? when sjould/shouldnt you use them?

  5. christopher says:

    with a pt or workout buddy-but not everyday-i agree.

  6. Robert Dark says:

    My partner and I did this last night. Now my arms feel like rubber bands and my pecs are still burning. I am glad its legs day for me. Thanks again.


  7. That is actually Joey Gloor an american personal trainer who stared on MTV’s I Used To Be Fat.


  1. […] you have a training partner, use forced reps instead. Forced reps are a much safer alternative to cheat reps, but you’ll need the assistance of a spotter or […]

  2. […] sure your using lots of the latest and most advanced techniques such as drop sets, forced reps and pyramid sets into your workouts. Using these techniques will really help your muscles break […]

Speak Your Mind