Mass Building Squat Secrets

Mass Building Squats

Revealed: Missing Link in Mass Building Program

What I’m about share with you may not seem like a revelation at first but the truth is, 90% of all gym rats completely ignore this one critical aspect of their mass building program. I don’t want you to make that mistake. In fact, by committing yourself to doing this one mass building exercise on a consistent basis, and doing it exactly the way I tell you in this article, you’ll be amazed at how much faster you’ll grow!

The Secret Path to Gaining More Muscle Mass…Revealed!

Scientifically speaking, your ability to build new muscle mass is directly linked to your ability to naturally increase anabolic hormones in your body (testosterone, growth hormone, IGF-​​1, etc.). We know this is true because the reason why pro bodybuilders are so freakishly huge is that they use steroids to artificially pump their anabolic hormones through the roof. But we also know that steroids are dangerous and in my opinion, not worth the health risks and side effects.

To naturally boost muscle-​​building hormones, you must first realize that your anabolic endocrine system has a “supply and demand” relationship. The more muscle fibers you train and the more intensely you train them, the more natural hormone response you’ll create. The result is brand new lean muscle tissue.

Now consider this — your leg muscles (quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, calves) make up about two thirds of your entire body’s muscle mass. So by training your legs, you target more way more muscle fibers and trigger a much larger response from your endocrine system to respond with a flood of natural anabolic hormones. And herein lies the secret, because those hormones aren’t just isolated to building mass on your legs. They will help you to build mass on all of your body’s muscle groups, including your chest, back, shoulders, and arms.

In fact, the Barbell Squat has been proven to be the best overall exercise for skyrocketing testosterone and other anabolic hormone levels in the body. This is one of the reasons why I had an experimental group of test subjects (I call them my “Hardgainer Lab Rats”) train with squats every other workout. The hormone boost they got helped skyrocket their mass gains to build muscle when all other training programs had FAILED! (BTW…you can see their amazing “before & after” pictures at www​.HardgainerProjectX​.com)

Unfortunately, most bodybuilders train their legs much less than other muscle groups, or even not at all. And those that do, often avoid the Barbell Squat because it’s either “too hard” or they don’t know the correct way to train. So here are some secrets to help you perfect the Barbell Squat and extract its amazing mass building powers to pack on some serious size:

Build More Mass With High Rep Squats

Forget the powerlifter method of going super heavy on your squats. If mass building is your goal, it’s safer and more effective to keep your repetitions at the higher end. Aim for three to five sets of 12–15 repetitions for your mass building workout. You’ll have to use less weight, but there will be much less strain on your back and knees and you’ll trigger a much larger release of muscle-​​building hormones.

Mass Building Negatives Build More Muscle

A lot of newbie bodybuilders fail to realize that the portion of the Barbell Squat where you’re lowering your body down is the most powerful phase of the repetition. Called the “negative” portion, it stimulates muscle fibers for growth more effectively than when you’re raising your body up. To make sure you maximize muscle fiber stimulation, lower yourself slowly (count to four) on the way down and faster (count to 2) on the way up.

Mass Building Squats Require Increased Range of Motion

Because too many people try to “squat heavy”, they most often don’t go down far enough in their range of motion to fully target their legs. The very bottom of the movement (where your upper legs are parallel to the floor) is called the “stretch overload” position and where your muscle fibers are at max stimulation. If you can’t lower yourself to parallel on every repetition, you’re using too much weight. Lower the weight you use and go all the way down to really maximize your mass building.



  1. Dennis Kempin says:

    Hi Jeff!

    Great article, I just arrived at the point where I started to think about dropping my lower body workout because I want to focus on my upper body. Now I know I definitely should keep it going.

    Though I have one question left. For making most out of the anabolic hormones is it important to have upper and lower body workout in one session?

    My current training plan splits up upper and lower body into separate days, so I am thinking about putting it together to one overall workout, twice a week.

    Thanks very much for writing this blog! Always an inspiration!

    • Great question! I’ve used both methods. For this mass building training technique (from Hardgainer Project X) lower body is always combined with upper body exercises. I personally get my best results from this method though my other programs split up upper and lower body workouts.

      It’s just a matter of testing both methods and tracking your results to see how your body responds.

  2. eldon says:

    I have knee problems(arthritis) . How can I trains quads and hams?

    • Experiment with lighter weights to see which movements cause you the most problems. Compound exercises using bodyweight movements (like bodyweight squats) I feel provide the best natural support for your joints. I would also experiment with isolation exercises such as leg extensions and leg curls with lighter weights to see which movements cause pain and which will actually help provide more strength and support for you to be able to continue to lift.

  3. dj beats says:

    Thank you for writing this blog! It definitely sheds some light on a few issues I’ve been pondering over. I also have a case of arthritis and it often hinders my workout performance. I’ll try some of the things suggested here. I do think it will help a lot. Thanks for the insight.

  4. David says:

    I find squats to be the best exercise. I do body weight n jump squats but have always been interested in the barbell variation. Not only do squats kill ur legs but they help shed fat n also helps out with giving u a sick six pack. Love the articles

  5. Kay says:

    Great article and very well written. Definitely going to work in squats every other work out now! By the way, do you recommend any articles about a program on how to sculpt your abs? (Not necessarily losing body fat — that I have no problem with, I\‘m 27 yrs, 160 lbs, 8.5% body fat)…I just need to sculpt them, and your advice would be much appreciated Jeff!

    • Jeff Anderson says:

      Hi Kay! This is going to sound like a shameless plug (and it is) but my Combat The Fat program has the best results I\‘ve seen in everyone from Average Joe\‘s (& Jane\‘s) to even spec ops troops stationed overseas.

      It uses a tweaked version of the military\‘s program that\‘s designed for anyone to use for any fitness level.

  6. rich says:

    Jeff i\‘m 52 i like doing a squat exercise, how often should i do them and how dangerous is it at my age for a mass workout

  7. Reuben says:

    im reuben and I weigh 133lbs. How much weight do you think I should be able to do from doing this.

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Jeff Anderson

Jeff Anderson is a 10 year veteran of the U.S. Army, a Master Fitness Trainer, and Master Instructor of Close Quarters Combat self defense. A full time fitness and self defense author, Jeff has trained thousands of men and women in the practical application of advanced military fitness methods as well as close combat tactics for "real life" self defense.

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