What is a Superset?

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People who are beginners or even intermediates to the world of fitness can sometime be intimidated. Often it comeswhat is a superset from not understanding the terminology and/or concepts being included in instruction articles. To help alleviate that problem we are taking some time to go over some of the basic ideas and concepts that should be included in your knowledge base for weight lifting by answering questions such as, “what is a superset?” that a lot of people have.

Learning different ideas, concepts, and techniques helps to increase your options as well as understanding on how to best to workout to achieve your quickest results. It takes time to not only learn a lot of the ideas involved in weight lifting but then to also practically apply them which gains you first-hand experience on their effectiveness and usefulness.

Today we are going to cover the superset which is a great workout concept.

What is a Superset?

Basically a superset is when you perform two exercises in a row without resting in between. That creates the idea of a ‘super’ set. Then you take a normal rest as you would between regular sets before doing the next superset.

They can be hard when you first start using them because it requires a higher level of muscle endurance to complete two sets without rest in between them. But your endurance will increase after implementing them for awhile.

You can superset the same muscle, different muscles, and opposing muscles.

Why Use Supersets?

There are a lot of great reasons to use supersets in your routine:

  • To increase muscle endurance. You force your body to adapt to working your muscles intensely over a longer period.
  • To save time. Your workouts are a lot faster when you combine exercises together into supersets. As your muscles fatigue faster you end up doing fewer overall sets.
  • As an intensity technique. Intermediate and advanced bodybuilders use supersets to push their muscles harder than they could be doing just straight sets.

Comparing Supersets

When you ask what is a superset, you also need to ask what the different types of supersets are.


  • Compound/Isolation – This is where you do a compound exercise followed by an isolation exercise for the same muscle group. An example would be doing bench presses and dumbbell flyes. This style of superset can also be done as a low rep/high rep combination where you aim for 5-8 reps on the first exercise and 15-20 on the second exercise.
  • Opposing Muscles – This is where you work opposite muscle groups. The common pairings are back/chest, quads/hamstrings, and biceps/triceps. This dramatically increases the blood flow in the targeted areas due to their proximity.


You should never be afraid to ask questions such as, “What is a superset?” If you don’t then you would miss out on learning about quality techniques, such as the superset, that can be added to training programs for dramatic results. Make sure if you do start using them that you ease them into your routine. A superset is more demanding on your body than just doing straight sets and unless you want to be incredibly sore for a few days it is better to start slow.

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