The 6/12/25 Program For A Massive Chest!


Tri-sets are one of the best training methods you can use to build muscle.

There are many different ways to perform tri-sets for a huge chest but one of my favorites is the 6/12/25 method.

If you want to build a huge chest then this article is for you!

Introduction

  • Part 1: What Are Tri-Sets?
  • Part 2: The 6/12/25 Training Method
  • Part 3: The Science Of 6/12/25
  • Part 4: Sample Training Routines

In this comprehensive guide I will show you how to use the 6/12/25 method to add slabs of new muscle tissue to your chest.

The 6/12/25 method is tri-set protocol popularized by the Canadian strength coach Charles Poliquin.

A tri-set is a hypertrophy training method where you perform 3 exercises in a row for the same muscle group. Here is how to perform a tri-set:

Tri-Set Training Protocol

  • Step #1: Perform exercise A, then rest 10 seconds
  • Step #2: Perform exercise B, then rest 10 seconds
  • Step #3: Perform exercise C, then rest 2-4 minutes, repeat!

Here is IFBB pro Ken Jackson demonstrating a tri-set for the chest. Check it out:

Ken uses the pec dec machine, cable chest presses and decline hammer strength presses with bands for his 3 chest exercises.

Tri-sets are so effective for building muscle because they extend the time under tension of the set and force your muscles to work 3 times as long as normal.

Most people perform tri-sets with higher rep ranges to push as much blood into the muscle as possible. For example Ken Jackson performed each exercise in his chest tri-set in the 10-20 rep range.

This strategy can work but if you really want to blow up your chest then you have to try a tri-set using the 6/12/25 method.

The thing that makes the 6/12/25 method unique is the crazy rep ranges. You perform 6 reps for your first exercise, 12 reps for your second exercise and 25 reps for your third exercise. Check it out:

The 6/12/25 Training Method

  • Step 1: Perform exercise A for 6 reps, then rest 10 seconds
  • Step 2: Perform exercise B for 12 reps, then rest 10 seconds
  • Step 3: Perform exercise C for 25 reps, rest 2-3 minutes and repeat!

Here is a perfect demonstration of the 6/12/25 method for chest. Check it out:

In this video the athlete performs a 6/12/25 chest tri-set using the incline smith machine press, incline dumbbell press and incline dumbbell flyes.

So why would anyone train this way? The truth is the 6/12/25 method helps you maximize the three biological triggers for hypertrophy. Check it out:

The 3 Biological Triggers For Muscular Hypertrophy

  • Biological Trigger #1: Mechanical Tension
  • Biological Trigger #2: Muscle Damage
  • Biological Trigger #3: Metabolic Fatigue

All three of these biological triggers play an important role in how much muscle mass you can build.

Mechanical tension has to do with how much tension you can place on your muscle fibers during an exercise.

With the 6/12/25 method your first exercise is performed for 6 reps which is perfect for maximizing mechanical tension. Then you perform 2 more exercises for 12 reps and 25 reps which jacks up the muscle damage and metabolic fatigue.

By the end of the tri-set your chest will feel like it is ready to explode!

There are many different ways you can design your own 6/12/25 method workout. Here is a routine that Vince Delmont performed. Check it out:

Vince Delmonte’s 6/12/25 Chest Workout

  • A1: 30 degree incline bench press (wide grip), 3-4 x 6, 3/0/1/0, 10 seconds rest
  • A2: 15 degree incline DB press (pronating grip), 3-4 x 12, 2/0/1/0, 10 seconds rest
  • A3: Cable crossover (high-pulley / pronating grip), 3-4 x 25, 1/0/1/0, 2-3 minutes rest

Here is the training video for this workout:

I recommend you perform 3-4 of these tri-sets in a single workout. It’s normal for your strength to decrease a little bit as you progress through the workout. However, if your strength starts to fall off a cliff then you should stop the workout.

I recommend you use a 20% fatigue drop-off curve to figure out how much volume you should perform.

Let’s say you lift 200 pounds for 6 reps on your first set of incline bench presses. If your strength on this exercise decreases by more than 20% then you should stop the workout.

That means the lowest weight you could use for 6 reps is 160 pounds.

Now let’s look at the original 6/12/25 chest workout as popularized by the strength coach Charles Poliquin. Check it out:

Charles Poliquin’s Original 6/12/25 Chest Routine

  • A1: 45 degree incline DB press (hammer grip), 3-4 x 6, 4/0/1/0, 10 seconds rest
  • A2: 45 degree incline barbell press (medium grip), 3-4 x 12, 3/0/1/0, 10 seconds rest
  • A3: 30 degree incline DB press (hammer grip), 3-4 x 25, 2/0/1/0, 2-3 minutes rest

Here are the training videos: exercise A1, exercise A2, exercise A3.

Charles Poliquin was a big fan of the 6/12/25 method. It was one of his go-to training methods for rapidly building muscle mass and rapidly losing body fat.

If he had an athlete who looked like he ate more doughnuts in the past year than Homer Simpson then he immediately put him on a 6/12/25 routine. It is that effective for improving body composition!

Conclusion

The 6/12/25 method is one of the best training methods you can use to build a big, strong chest. One of the things I like about this method is it uses a variety of rep ranges to target every type of muscle fiber in your chest.

The chest is made up of about 65% fast-twitch muscle fibers so it is extremely important to include some lower-rep sets in your training programs.

Here is one more quote by Charles Poliquin about the 6/12/25 method to pump you up even more:

“You don’t have to be a pre-diet Jarrod from Subway to undertake this program, but if you decide to try it, you’ll be very pleased with your newly found definition and newly found size and endurance.”

Thank you for reading and I wish you the best of luck on your strength training journey!

Dr. Mike Jansen, PT, DPT

Thanks for checking out my site! My name is Dr. Mike Jansen and I'm the founder of Revolutionary Program Design. If you want to reach your size and strength goals faster then you've come to the right place. My goal is to make RPD the #1 strength training resource available anywhere in the world. So grab a seat, kick back and relax. There's never been a better time to lift weights or to learn the art and science of strength training program design.

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