- Main GoalBuild Muscle
- Workout TypeSplit
- Training LevelIntermediate
- Program Duration12 weeks
- Days Per Week5
- Time Per Workout45-70 minutes
- Equipment RequiredBarbell, Bodyweight, Cables, Dumbbells, Machines
- Target Gender Male & Female
- Workout PDF Download Workout
Bodybuilding bro splits, at one time, were by far the most popular workout split.
Nearly everyone at the gym was doing them.
Chest days, back days, leg days, oh my!
Heck, we even had arm day – arguably the best day of the week.
For decades, you would rush to newsstands to buy the newest muscle mag just to get a glimpse of that month’s new bro split.
And, although we’ve realized they’re not exactly optimal for most at this point, every now and then they’re still very fun to do.
There’s just something about going to the gym, developing that strong mind-muscle connection with whatever body part you’re training that day, and absolutely destroying it.
This article is going to take you back to those days. Check it out, and if you’re looking for something fun to do for 12ish weeks, give it a shot.
The Ultimate Bro Split Workout Overview
This workout is exactly what it sounds like. It’s a 5 day per week workout routine where each day is its own muscle group.
Each workout will take approximately 45-75 minutes to perform. Depending on your rest periods, you might even finish quicker than that.
Speaking of rest periods, I’m going to make a unique suggestion: Don’t time them. Simply rest as needed to recover and then move onto your next set.
In terms of progression, try to increase the weight used whenever capable while understanding that progress isn’t always linear. So long as you’re going up over the duration of the program, you will see some nice results.
Bro splits aren’t for everyone. A lot of science out there suggests they’re not even optimal. However, they can be a fun change of pace which I’m all game for. Run this program as needed to capitalize on your nostalgic form of training and get back to something you find benefits you more.
Monday: Chest Day
|Barbell Bench Press||3||10|
|Dumbbell Incline Bench Press||3||10|
|Decline Hammer Strength Machine Press||3||10|
Tuesday: Leg Day
|Barbell Back Squat||3||10|
|Machine Hack Squat||3||10|
Wednesday: Shoulder Day
|Seated Shoulder Press||3||10|
|Reverse Fly Machine||3||10|
Thursday: Back Day
|Lat Pull Down||3||10|
|Hammer Strength Row||3||10|
|Straight Arm Lat Pull Down||3||10|
Friday: Arm Day
|Barbell Bicep Curl||3||10|
|Incline Dumbbell Curl||3||10|
There’s no school quite like the old school.
And no matter what anyone says, bro splits still do work.
If you’re looking for a fun way to get back into a dedicated routine of working out, this might just be the perfect workout for you.
If you have any questions about the workout, please feel free to leave us a comment below!
Hello Roger, started the bro split recently and i am having so much fun. Question: my gym does not have the Decline Hammer Strength Machine Press, can you recommend me any alternative? Thanks a lot, keep grinding!
Hey George, Anything decline would work - barbell, dumbbell, Smith Machine. If your gym doesn't have any of those, do dips with your upper body leaning forward.
Is it okay to cut while on a bro split?
I weight 210, and want to see definition
or a change, but Without sacrificing my hard
earned gains. Thanks.
Yeah, David. You can do it. Keep your protein up so you can protect that muscle you're wanting to reveal.
So we do the same exact workouts for 12 weeks?
Yes, Eric. Same workout every week for all 12 weeks. The goal is to either improve reps or get stronger each week. Even if you do one rep better each session, that will add up to greater results.
Does it matter if you change the order? I noticed back and arms are back to back but you would be double working biceps. Also, because of my schedule, I would need to change it. Would it work to do:
Clearly you thought out this schedule, Patrick. If it works for you, and you're able to give your all to the weights, go for it!
Any advice on which days should I hit my abs if I follow this program?
Get them in any day you can, Kenneth. You can even do them at home if you like. If you decide to do them with your normal workouts, train abs at the end of the session. Hope this helps!
Would you recommend 2 minute rests between sets, or longer? I am currently doing a split that recommends 3-4 minutes between sets, but the reps are lower as well. Thanks! I am excited to try this program.
Hey Charles. Two minutes between sets would be plenty. You may even notice that you're ready to go after 90 seconds. If so, go for it.
If I first set I use 30lbs for 6-8 rep and I decease weight to 25lbs for 10-12 rep on set 2, this is good? Or I just use same weight for 3 set each
Hi, Tai. Try to use the same weight for all sets, or try to work your way up if you want to use different weights. Start with 25 for 10-12, then go up to 30. Hope this helps.
What type of training style do I follow?
Standard pyramid? Reverse pyramid? Straight sets?
Hey Sandor - you'll do straight sets.
Hi, I workout in my house and don’t have a hammer strength row machine. Ca I use a wide grip cable row instead of the hammer machine or what exercise can I do instead of the hammer row exercise. Thank you.
Good news as if the fact that all the legends used a bro SPLIT and it clearly worked the latest research from Brad schoenfeld phd shows that bro splits are at the very least just as effective as other popular splits sometimes more
I can say that after a long hiatus this kind of routine has worked well for me and it did well back then when i was a serious gym goer. This regimen works for me because I feel I can recover better from just working out one area of my body rather than 2 or 3 such in full body workouts.
I was never able to do full body workouts in 3 days for example, felt overwhelmed and not to mention discouraged trying to spend over an hour excercising.
Bottom line is do what feels right for you within reason. There is not a one size fits all regimen for everyone. Take in consideration your current build/weight, age, endurance and willingness too.
My own split regimen goes like this:
Day 1: arms/shoulders
Day 2: chest
Day 3: back/abs
Day 4: legs
Day 5: cardio
Take day off
Merci!! Much appreciated.
Would a 6 day bro split be too much? It seems like the legs don't get enough by trying to do it all in one day, and I am wondering if a 6 day split would work without overwhelming the body:
Monday - Quads
Tuesday - Chest
Wednesday - Back
Thursday - Shoulders
Friday - Hamstrings/calves (could do deadlifts here if not back day)
Saturday - Arms
Any feedback is appreciated, by site admins or readers.
That would be fine. Just be sure to really listen to your body and make sure you're resting and recovering well between workouts.
If you have a weak point like legs for example def train them twice a week to bring them up concentrating on a posterior , anterior split
Can really any split work? I mean as long as your applying progressive overload, using enough weekly volume, in the end wont the results even out over time?
I personally love these types of splits but these are so frowned upon as " Not optimal" due to the high volume and low frequency...
I have better recovery, the workouts are quicker, more focus and I look foward to all of them separately. Hitting 3 muscles in one session can work, but once the weight gets heavy, it's not very sustainable, for me anyway!
Always wondered why these splits are so frowned upon. As long as the volume is there and progressive overload is taking place, does it really matter what program you do?
I personally find these workouts more enjoyable, brief and more focused then trying to fit in 3 muscles on one day... But with all the research they're deemed "Not effective " and to stay clear away from bro splits. So I find myself doing splits I dont care for because I dont want to waste my time. Can someone stick with a program like this and get results?
What is difference between full body and bro split workout?
"Bro splits" are not new and they do work despite what all the Instagram fitness gurus say.
When I started bodybuilding in 1989, all the big dudes in the gym were doing a 4-day split, hitting each muscle hard and heavy once a week and then letting it rest. We grew.
Mon: Chest, triceps
Tues: Back, biceps
Thurs: Shoulders, traps