What are Supersets?

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Supersets involve performing sets of two exercises back-to-back with no rest between for opposing muscle groups or movement patterns to maximize intensity.

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  • Common superset pairings are push/pull (chest and back) or upper/lower body lifts (quad and hamstring exercises).
  • Eliminating rest between exercises spikes fatigue, metabolic demands and time efficiency versus traditional sets.
  • Supersets induce greater hypertrophy and calorie burn by increasing volume and decreasing rest periods. They enhance muscle pumps.
  • Rotate supersets each session for variety. Maintain proper form and control when fatigued – reduce weight if needed. Don’t sacrifice safety.


  • Bench presses superset with bent over rows
  • Pull-ups superset with overhead shoulder press
  • Battle ropes superset with bodyweight squats

Related Terms

  • Tri-sets, giant sets, circuits, compound sets, complex pairs

Common Questions

  • Are supersets good for strength? They can help, but optimal strength gains come from sufficient rest between heavy sets.
  • Should I superset every exercise? Not necessarily – do higher intensity supersets periodically when seeking metabolic stress.

Do Not Confuse With

  • Regular sets – Taking prescribed rest between all sets of an exercise before moving to the next.
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