The pyramid system involves a progressive or regressive step approach that either increses the weight used in your exercise with each set or decreases the weight with each set.
In the light-to-heavy system, you’ll perform 10 to 12 repetitions with a light load and increase the resistance for each following set, until you can only perform one to two repetitions (stick to good form!), usually in four to six sets. So if you were doing dumbbell bicep curls it might look like this:
Set One: 10 repetitions with 5 pounds
Set Two: 8 repetitions with 7 pounds
Set Three: 6 repetitions with 10 pounds
Set Four: 4 repetitions with 12 pounds
Set Five: 2 repetitions with 15 pounds
The heavy-to-light system works in the opposite direction. You’ll begin with a heavy load (after a sufficient warm-up) for one to two repetitions, then decrease the load and increase the repetitions for four to six sets.
Remember, when doing resistance training exercises to exhale on the muscle exertion and don’t sway or rock your body. Proper tempo is 2 seconds on the muscle exertion and 3-4 seconds on the return.