Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.)

Degree Granting Department

Graduate School

Major Professor

Bill I. Campbell, Ph.D., FISSN, CSCS

Committee Member

Marcus Kilpatrick, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Layne Norton, Ph.D.


Resistance Training, Strength, Weight Training, Squat, Deadlift, Bench Press


Daily undulating periodization represents an increasingly popular trend in exercise science with which a traditional model has been established. Tiered daily undulating periodization pairs the DUP approach with a tiered training system which allows volume and intensity to be more evenly distributed throughout a given graining cycle. The concept of tiered daily undulating periodization is a novel form of periodization and has not been investigated. As such, a comparison of traditional and tiered daily undulating periodization has yet to be examined. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to compare the effects of traditional and tiered daily undulating periodization models as they relate to strength adaptations in trained males.

Twenty-seven resistance trained males (22.0 ± 4.5 years) completed an 8 week resistance training protocol. Subjects were randomly assigned to either the traditional daily undulating periodization group (DUP, n = 12) or tiered daily undulating periodization group (TDUP, n = 15). Participants were recruited from the campus recreation center and met the minimum strength requirements of bench pressing their bodyweight, squatting 125% of their bodyweight, and deadlifting 150% of their bodyweight. Strength measures included squat 1RM, bench press 1RM, deadlift 1RM, powerlifting total, and Wilk’s Coefficient. Each variable was measured at baseline and again after the 8 week training period. Each group performed the same number of sets, reps, and exercises throughout each training week. DUP specified all exercises in a given training bout to be performed the same intensity and repetition scheme. TDUP specified performance of one high intensity exercise each day with each subsequent exercise being performed with lower intensity and differing repetition scheme. Data was analyzed via a 2x2 mixed factorial ANOVA with the alpha criterion for significance set at 0.05.

There were no significant differences between groups at baseline and no significant differences were observed between groups for total volume or intensity. With respect to strength dependent variables, there was a main effect for time (p = <0.001) for back squat 1RM (DUP pre = 140.5 ± 33.9 kg, DUP post = 163.3 ± 29.8 kg; TDUP pre = 147.3 ±34.0 kg, TDUP post = 166.5 ± 30.7 kg), bench press 1RM (DUP pre = 104.2 ± 12.9 kg, DUP post = 114.9 ± 14.2 kg; TDUP = 110.4 ± 12.7 kg, TDUP post = 120.6 ± 11.9 kg), deadlift 1RM (DUP pre = 177.7 ± 26.4 kg, DUP post = 194.1 ± 20.2 kg; TDUP pre = 169.6 ± 37.5, TDUP post = 188.3 ± 37.5), powerlifting total (DUP pre = 422.4 ± 67.8 kg, DUP post = 472.4 ± 60.6 kg; TDUP pre = 427.1 ± 79.2 kg, TDUP post = 476.5 ± 74.1 kg), and Wilk’s score (DUP pre = 287.5 ± 49.3, DUP post = 320.0 ± 45.6; TDUP pre = 298.3 ± 45.8, TDUP post = 331.6 ± 38.7). However, no interaction effects were observed between DUP and TDUP for any of the strength dependent variables.

These results suggest that 8 weeks of tiered DUP resistance training leads to similar gains in strength compared to the traditional DUP model in trained males. This could be a result of the similar workload between both groups. While not significant, traditional DUP may be more efficacious for improving back squat 1RM (DUP = 16%; TDUP = 13%), while TDUP may elicit greater strength gains in the deadlift (DUP = 9%; TDUP = 12%). Furthermore, this study demonstrates that exercise order and training intensity can be manipulated throughout each training session according to personal preference while maintaining strength adaptations within a DUP model. Lastly, dropout rates in this study lead researchers to conclude that the DUP protocols investigated should be transient and not used as a long term training approach.