Looking to get the absolute most out of your workout? Adding supersets to your usual circuit can really turn up the levels.

The idea is that rather than taking a full break to recover, you rest one set of muscles while working another. This means that you can keep the workout pushing through with no rest in the middle.


First, let’s get the definitions clear.

A circuit is a workout routine which comprises several different movements. These are usually designed to work the entire body during the routine.

A set is a number of repetitions (reps) of each of those movements.

A superset is two or more sets carried out without any break in between. The two sets usually work different muscle groups. This allows you to continue without a break, as one set of muscles can be recuperating while you work the other.


Try these combinations, adapting number of reps and weights to your fitness level and target.

  1. Antagonist superset (working opposing muscles) –2 sets biceps curls, then 2 set triceps moves. 2 sets bench press, then 2 sets pull ups.
  2. Non-competing supersets (working different parts of the body) – combine upper body and lower body sets. For instance, do two sets of weighted squats, and follow with two sets of deadlifts.
  3. Agonist supersets – blast one set of muscles to exhaustion. This could be some serious abdominal work, or supersets that concentrate on legs.

Finally, combine it all into this one-hour circuit superset workout. All you need is dumb-bells and an exercise mat.

Always start with a thorough warm-up. Don’t be afraid to add intermediate warm-ups when you change the muscle group that you are working.

Super-setting your workout is a whole new level of challenge – but the big effort will pay off. Get warmed up and give it a go.

The Author

Jessica Ambrose

Jessica is a fitness writer who loves long distance running, yoga, strength training and healthy eating.


Sean S.
31 August 2017

Sean S.

I think Arnold Schwarzenegger used supersets for his workouts and they seemed to work for him!

Emma C.
8 November 2016

Emma C.

I never knew what supersets were before but will definitely try it out to get the workout done sooner!.

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