European Journal of Applied Physiology

, Volume 119, Issue 6, pp 1409–1417 | Cite as

Acute effects of different set configurations during a strength-oriented resistance training session on barbell velocity and the force–velocity relationship in resistance-trained males and females

  • Alejandro TorrejónEmail author
  • Danica Janicijevic
  • Guy Gregory Haff
  • Amador García-Ramos
Original Article



This study explored the acute effects of strength-oriented resistance training sessions performed using three different set configurations on barbell velocity and the force–velocity (F–v) relationship of upper-body muscles in men and women.


Thirteen men (age: 23.8 ± 2.5 years; 6-repetition maximum [6RM] load: 73.4 ± 15.6 kg) and 13 women (age: 21.5 ± 1.4 years; 6RM load: 32.8 ± 5.2 kg) performed 24 repetitions with a 6RM load during the bench press exercise using traditional (TR: 6 sets of 4 repetitions with 3 min of rest between sets), cluster (CL: 6 sets of 4 repetitions with 15 s of intra-set rest every two repetitions and 2 min and 45 s of rest between sets) and inter-repetition rest (IRR: 1 set of 24 repetitions with 39 s of rest between repetitions) set configurations. The F–v relationship parameters [maximum force (F0), maximum velocity (v0) and maximum power (Pmax)] were determined before and after each training session.


The average training velocity did not differ between the three set configurations (p = 0.234), but the IRR set configuration generally provided higher velocities during the last repetition of each set. Significant decreases in F0 (p = 0.001) and Pmax (p = 0.024) but not in v0 (p = 0.669) were observed after the training sessions. Comparable velocity loss was observed for men and women (− 12.1% vs. − 11.3%; p = 0.699).


The administration of very short intra-set rest periods does not allow for the attainment of higher velocities than traditional set configurations during strength-oriented resistance training sessions conducted with the bench press exercise when the work-to-rest ratio is equated.


Strength training Cluster set Inter-repetition rest Velocity loss 



Traditional set configuration


Cluster set configuration


Inter-repetition rest set configuration

1 RM

One repetition maximum




Maximal theoretical force


Maximal theoretical velocity


Maximal theoretical power


Effect size


Standard deviation



We would like to thank all subjects that voluntary participated in this study.

Author contribution statement

AT, AGR and GGH conceived and designed research. AT and AGR collected data. AT, DJ, and AGR organized the database and performed the statistical analysis. AT and AGR wrote the first draft of the manuscript. All authors contributed to manuscript revision, read and approved the submitted version.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Physical Education and Sport, Faculty of Sport SciencesUniversity of GranadaGranadaSpain
  2. 2.Faculty of Sport and Physical EducationUniversity of Belgrade, The Research CentreBelgradeSerbia
  3. 3.Centre for Exercise and Sports Science ResearchEdith Cowan UniversityJoondalupAustralia
  4. 4.Department of Sports Sciences and Physical Conditioning, Faculty of Education, CIEDECatholic University of Most Holy ConcepciónConcepciónChile

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