I think it is important for people who criticize HST for being "too simple" or, as they incorrectly perceive, "nothing new", to understand that just as the physiology behind strength is complicated, the physiolgy behind muscle hypertrophy, which is the foundation of HST, is also complicated. HST is not a "guess" like all the previous muscle building programs. It is a method based on the physiology of muscle growth. You can't simply read one study and come to the conclusion that HST is the "big picture". It has taken me personally over a decade of reading the kind of research [posted in the studies section] before I was able to put together HST with any degree of confidence. The studies listed are a great cross section of the “current” state of understanding about how muscles “know” how to hypertrophy in response to mechanical stimuli. However, in order to understand it, a person has to have some background in the several fields of study that have gotten us this far. I have been working hard to get the book done. I know I keep saying that but its true. Trying to keep all of this running is more complicated than it might look. If I drop one of the balls I’m juggling I’ll have to drop all this and go to work for the highest bidder. You also have to know how to investigate. I’m not saying anyone here doesn’t, I’m just saying that you can’t just set out to find the holy grail of training. Believe me, I’ve tried. It doesn’t exist. At least not in one place. Instead, the answers are widely interspersed through a wide range of research coming at things from greatly different angles. Not only that, but you will find some research that is seemingly unaware of other pertinent research simply because the fields of origin are far removed from each other. In short, you have to break down the process of training for muscle hypertrophy (the big canvas) into two parts. The first part is the “means” by which we are able to apply the mechanical stimuli, namely weight lifting. The second part is the point of interest or, muscle cell itself. Weight lifting is composed of the following (just examples): Different movements of the body Different positions of the body during movement Different planes of motion of the limbs Different speeds of movement Different kinds of muscle contractions Eccentric Concentric Static Differing numbers of repetitions Differing amounts of tension Differing amounts of fatigue Differing durations of rest Different frequencies of training bouts The muscle cell is composed of the following (just examples): Structure Connective tissue Membrane characteristics Cytoskeletal Proteins Contractile proteins IMPs Receptors Function Motor Neurons Motor Units Sliding filaments z-lines etc Metabolism glycolytic lipolytic aminoacid oxidation ATP/CP Genetics Mechanisms of injury Mechanical Strain Oxidative stress Optimal length Mechanisms of repair Anabolism proteolysis Immune response Fibrous tissue Myogenic stem cells Paracrine and autocrine Mechanotransduction Signaling molecules MAPKs Calcenurin HSPs Nutrition effects High/low calorie Protein Carbs fat Supplements Endocrine effects Testosterone GH IGF-1 Leptin Myostatin Etc. I think you can begin to see the complexity of research that went into HST as well as HSN. From the list above I think you can see why people choose to stick with training issues rather that physiology. It’s just so complex that it’s easier just to argue about sets and reps. Or even just to revel over how "hard" a routine is...Now I’m not complaining, I love this stuff almost as much as I love growing. But still, I can’t give you an answer in a nutshell. Even the HST book will be a short hand version of the state of the art of building muscle. Anyone who argues with these principles after understanding them correctly is in error. That is a strong statement but it is true. These are principles that we “know” from research and experience. The data from this research is not theoretically based. It is based on identification, measurements, and direct microscopic observation. All future research will show us is more genetic detail, NOT that we were wrong on some sort of fundamental basis. So, anyone can with confidence apply these principles to their training and successfully induce muscular hypertrophy. If anyone should attempt to apply these principles and not experience some degree of muscle growth, it is not because the principles are wrong, it is because the application of the principles was flawed. Once again, another strong statement, but it is true. For example, just because you plant a garden and water it does not mean you will successfully grow prize-winning vegetables. Does this mean that your garden acted by some other mysterious agricultural principles other than those based on water, sunlight and soil? Of course not! We “know” the principles of growing plants. Where we fail, is in our application of those known principles. The application is where the details lie. Issues such as how much, how many, how fast, when and where to name a few. Whether it be growing plants, or growing muscle, you are dealing with a moving target. Because plants are alive, or put another way, because plants are biological systems, the best application of agricultural principles to grow vegetables will change as conditions change. The same is true for the application of the principles of hypertrophy or muscle growth. The application will change as conditions change. All the while, being careful to stay faithful to the underlying “known” principles.