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We use RPE as a tracking tool with many of our clients, both in-house face-to-face, and also online.


RPE is a good self-assess tracking tool so the person assesses it themselves how hard they felt. They worked out of 10, so it’s like a percentage or number out of 10.

If you’re working at a nine or ten, there’s really not much of a chance that you’re going to be able to do anything extra, especially 10 would be the absolute maximum, you could ever achieve.

But then, if you’re working at around an eight, that’s a really good level and you probably unlikely to be able to go up or make it a bit more challenging if it’s around a six or a seven, then we find If someone writes a 6, then they can they look at their exercise and then they go, oh look, I can probably make it a bit more challenging there the following week, a good level for most people.

In the self-assess tracking tool, you’d find that a seven or an eight. If you were to really go to maximum, you might have a couple of reps in reserve with the exercise.  So we’ve found RPE, Rate of Perceived Exertion as a really good tracking tool to understand where somebody’s at and because it’s a self-assess tool.

We find that it’s a great tool for the person to understand and take a little bit of responsibility I guess to see where, where and when they can go up, make things a bit more challenging or if it was challenging enough and you want to sort of maintain there for a couple of weeks longer before that RPE at that same exercise comes down. Because you might do it for the first time and it might have been eight out of ten and that’s pretty challenging.

You want to stay there, but the following week you might find that same exercise, same reps. Same weight is a seven as you build a bit more tolerance to it. So then you are you dial up the intensity a bit and you’re aiming for a 7 or an 8 out of 10 for most of the strength exercises, and that can vary anywhere from you know, quite low intensity is low up or too high up is depending upon what  the desired outcome, I guess.

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