We’ve all heard of 21s with Bicep Curls. Let me introduce to you 28s—seven better than 21s.
I teach at a personal training school in Santa Monica. I currently have 28 students. As it goes in the personal training profession, the majority are males. I’ve got 21 dudes. One day I asked them, “How many of you have performed 21s before?” In the blink of an eye, all 21 hands went up. Then I asked, “How many of you have performed 28s?” Not a single hand went up. As I flexed my arm to the class, I said, “Let me teach you about the next best bicep exercise you’ve never done before.”
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A traditional 21 is composed of seven partial reps on the bottom half, seven partial reps on the upper half and seven full reps. 28s are seven reps better than 21s. It isn’t rocket science, but where else can we add seven reps? Why are we ignoring the middle portion?
Twenty-eights are performed slightly differently from 21s. The additional seven reps are added to the middle of the lift in an oscillating fashion.
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Why stop at 28? Could you add another seven? What about 42s? You betcha! I challenge my students daily to come up with new exercises and different kinds of sets.
After explaining this game-changing new style of lift, I blow their minds one last time by challenging them to perform 28s during a Squat and Bench Press. Isolating exercises are all fine and dandy, but compound movements are the lifts that create real neuromuscular change.
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Here’s how to implement 28s:
- Bench Press — 5 x 6
- Incline Dumbbells — 4 x 8
- Chest Flies — 3 x 10
One burnout set of 28s on the Bench: the first seven are performed at the bottom half of the lift, then the top half for seven, middle half for seven, ending off on a final seven.
- Deadlifts — 5 x 3
- Bulgarian Split Squats — 3 x 8
- Leg Curls — 3 x 10
One burnout set of 28s on Squat: the first seven are performed at the bottom half of the lift, then the top half for seven, middle half for seven, ending off on a final seven.
One burnout set of 28s on the straight bar—the first seven at the bottom half of the lift, then the top half for seven, middle half for seven, ending off on a final seven.
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