ACE Study Guide Chapter 10

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Resistance training benefits

  • Physical capacity: One’s ability to perform exercise and work
    1. After 10 weeks of resistance training
      • 1.4 kg of increased muscle mass
      • A reduction in body fat by 1.8 kg
  • Body composition and overall physical appearance
  • Metabolic function
    1. Additional calories burned each day from a raised RMR
  • Disease prevention and risk of injury
    1. Increased BMD (bone mineral density)
    2. Decreased pain of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Overall decreased risk of osteoporosis
    3. Decreases blood pressure
    4. An overall better lipid profile
    5. Lowered rates of depression
    6. A decreased risk for metabolic syndrome

Long-term and acute physiological adaptations to Resistance training

  1. Influential factors
    • Growth hormone and testosterone increase
    • Age
    • Sex
    • Muscle fiber types: Type II/fast-twitch, type I/slow twitch, type IIX, and type IIa
    • The relative muscular length compared to bone
    • Limb length
      1. The muscle force arm x muscle force = the resistance force arm
    • The insertion point of the tendon
  2. Hypertrophy and muscular strength

Power, endurance, and strength relationships

  • Strength
    1. The one rep maximum (1RM)
  • Endurance
    1. The overall repetitions that can be done on a sub for maximal resistance
  • Power
    1. Moderate/fast movement speeds at a medium weight produce the most power

Training variables

  1. Things that need assessment
    • Skill in health-related parameters
  2. Frequency
    • Sessions per week per muscle group
    • Beginning clients: 2 to 3 times per week
    • Intermediate clients: 3 to 4 times per week
    • Advanced clients: 4 to 7 times per week
  3. The order of exercises
    • First are multi-joint compound exercises (the primary exercises)
    • Second, are single joint exercises (assisted exercises)
  4. Volume
    • Repetition volume
      1. The number of sets multiplied by the number of repetitions
    • Load volume
      1. This is the weight lifted multiplied by repetitions multiplied by sets = load volume
    • Goal-based volumes
      1. General muscle fitness
        • 8 to 15 repetitions for 1 to 2 sets with 30 to 90 seconds of rest. Intensity will vary
      2. Overall muscular endurance
        • A minimum of 12 repetitions for 2 to 3 sets with less than 30 seconds of rest at 60% to 70% of the one rep max
      3. Hypertrophy
        • 6 to 12 repetitions for 3 to 6 sets with 30 to 90 seconds of rest. This is done at 70% to 80% of the one rep maximum
      4. Muscular strength
        • Less than six repetitions for 2 to 3 sets with 2 to 5 minutes of rest at 80% to 90% of one rep maximum
      5. Power
        • Single effort repetitions/lifts: 1 to 2 repetitions for 3 to 5 sets with 2 to 5 minutes in between. This is done at more than 90% of one rep maximum.
        • Multiple effort lifts: 3 to 5 repetitions with 3 to 5 sets and 2 to 5 minutes of rest at more than 90% of the one rep maximum
  5. Intensity
    • Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS)
  6. Tempo
    • Isokinetic
    • Isotonic
    • Rest

Training principles


The double progressive strength training protocol

  • Increasing overall repetitions
  • Increasing the weight in increments of 5%


  • Resistance repetition protocols that are appropriate
  • For example a rower versus a shot putter


  • Heavier training loads need to be trained progressively
  • A 5% load increase helps to facilitate strength development


  • Strength is lost at about half the rate that it was gained

Diminishing returns

  • We need to change the training exercises when we plateau
  • New exercises help recruit new neuromuscular responses as well as new motor unit activation patterns. This helps with progressive strength improvements.

Periodization models for resistance training

  • The macrocycle: Overall timeframe for a periodization program
    1. Usually between six and 12 months
  • Mesocycle: Splits up the macrocycle into smaller cycles that progressively lead to the final goal
  • Microcycle: Splits up the mesocycle into smaller cycles as well
    1. Usually 2 to 4 weeks in length
  • Linear periodization: This is a training protocol that is consistent within another training protocol
    1. The variables change after each microcycle
  • Frequency- intensity-repetitions-sets-type (FIRST)
    1. Movement training FIRST
      • Sessions per week: 2 to 3
      • Lower intensity
      • Between 10 and 20 repetitions
      • At least one set
      • Will depend on movement efficiency of client
        1. Stable position, Multi-plane movements, unsupported postures, ground-based standing
        2. For lower body: Closed chain
        3. For upper body: Open chain
    2. Muscular endurance (FIRST)
      • Three times per week
        1. If your client is unable to do the same number of repetitions on their second or third workout, the frequency will be dropped to two times per week.
      • Between 12 and 16 repetitions (controlled at six seconds per repetition) at between 60% and 70% of one rep maximum within 75 to 100 seconds
      • 2 to 3 sets under 60 seconds rest
      • You need to emphasize the five basic movement patterns when selecting exercises
    3. Strength (FIRST)
      • Three days (72 hours) between sessions
      • Focus on between one and six repetitions at 80% to 90% of the one rep maximum for the best improvement.
        1. Focus on 70% to 90% for the initial stages
      • Usually between three and four sets
      • Focus on the five basic movement patterns
    4. Hypertrophy (FIRST)
      • 72 hours of recovery time for each muscle group
      • Between six and 12 repetitions at 70% to 80% of one rep maximum, 50 to 70 seconds of rest time for 3 to 6 sets
      • Combine machines and free weights
    5. Approaches that are more advanced
      • Compound sets: Two exercises or more for the same muscle group with no rest in between
      • Supersets: Alternating opposing muscle groups with little rest time between
      • Assisted training: This is training to fatigue with the trainer assisting an additional 3 to 5 repetitions after failure
      • Breakdown training: This is reducing the weight after failure by 10% to 20% in performing more repetitions until failure once again
    6. For power improvement
      • Plyometrics: These are movements that are powerful and quick and that included the stretch-shortening cycle
      • Amortization phase: This is the time period between concentric gained eccentric actions
      • Stretch-shortening (cycle): This is an eccentric contraction (active stretch) followed by an immediate concentric contraction (shortening) of the same muscle
      • Muscle spindles: These are able to sense the changes in the magnitude and rate of a stretch on a muscle
        1. They will invoke an involuntary contraction (stretch reflex) when there are quick stretches that it notices
    7. Older adults
      • Do not have them hold the breath due to a blood pressure increase
      • Avoid isometric contraction holding due to a blood pressure increase
      • Limit to two sessions weekly as they recover slower
    8. Nutrition
      • Anemia: This is a deficiency of iron
      • Caffeine: Will enhance athletic performance
      • Vitamin B12: Metabolism of protein, carbohydrate, fat and nerve tissue
      • Riboflavin: production of energy
      • Vitamin D: For bone growth, mineralization and the absorption of calcium
        1. Also good for nerve transmission, blood clotting, and muscle stimulation
      • Steroids
        1. Anabolic side effects:
          • Anger issues, reduction in testicle size, higher blood pressure, more facial hair, lower tone of voice for women, gynecomastia (larger breast size).
      • Precursor to testosterone (androstenedione)
        1. Lowers HDL levels, prostate cancer, pancreatic cancer, increases cardiac disease risk
        2. Increases gynecomastia and baldness

If you want additional study materials, check out the team over at Trainer Academy. They have incredible study materials for ACE And I have a special limited-time discount for my readers. I also suggest you check out my review on Trainer Academy here.

ACE CPT Chapter 10 - Resistance Training: Programming and Progressions 4
ACE CPT Chapter 10 - Resistance Training: Programming and Progressions 5
ACE CPT Chapter 10 - Resistance Training: Programming and Progressions 6
Tyler Read - Certified Personal Trainer with PTPioneer

Tyler Read

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2 thoughts on “ACE CPT Chapter 10 – Resistance Training: Programming and Progressions”

    • Hello,
      Of course you can get help to pass the American Council on exercise personal training exam. I suggest checking out Trainer Academy as they have fantastic study materials including a practice exam, flashcards, a study guide and other study materials to help you along your way to passing the exam. I hope this helps and here is the link.


75 ACE Practice Q's