Which Is A Better Training Program Split? PPL or PLP?

Choosing the right training program split is crucial to your journey towards the body you want. A split training program usually divides your body into different parts. The specific split days focus on strengthening and growing those muscles.

Training efficiently will require you to follow some principles. One of the best split known to us is PPL. Recently, another variation split program has also been popular, known as PLP.

So, which split program is better? PPL or PLP?

PPL has been a widely popular training program split. It focuses on pushing muscles, pulling muscles, and legs serially. This program is known to give great results and is a sustainable workout program. On the other hand, the PLP program focuses on the legs in between the push and pull muscles.

In this article, we’ll analyze the two programs and see which is a better split program.

What Is PPL Program?

One of the best exercises you can do to improve strength and build muscle is the Push Pull Legs Routine (PPL). The major muscle groups based on these motions focus on the push-pull legs workout split.

You divide your muscles into three groups for a PPL routine, and you work out each group on a different day. This enables you to work every muscle group to its absolute limit before giving that group as much time as possible to recover before the following workout.

Old-school bodybuilders’ initial split was working the back and biceps on the first training day of the week, the chest and triceps on the second, and the legs and shoulders on the third.

What Is PLP Program?

The push/legs/pull workout splits the eight main training muscles of the body into three distinct groups. These categories—pushing, legs, and pulling, represent a combination of the two. 

The categories are dependent on the direction in which those muscle groups are trained.

With this exercise program, your legs are worked out the first day, your pushing muscles the second, and your pulling muscles on the third day of the cycle.

There are PLP program variations that let you work each body part once or twice a week, but we’ll get to that later.

Quick Comparison Table

We have prepared a quick comparison table for you to see what each program incorporates – 

PPLPush Exercise Pull ExerciseLegs 
MusclesChest, Shoulders and TricepsBack, Traps, and BicepsQuadriceps, Hamstrings, and Calves 
PLPPush Exercise LegsPull Exercise 
MusclesChest, Shoulders and TricepsQuadriceps, Hamstrings, and Calves Backs and Biceps

From the table, it’s evident that there is no difference in which muscles each program works on. 

So, the difference must be in the order of the target muscles for each program. 


PPL vs. PLP 

You have a few options for how to arrange your workouts. Although push/pull/legs is the traditional PPL routine order, you can also place your leg workout in between your two upper body routines. What makes a difference, then?

Legs are performed toward the conclusion of the training cycle on a PPL routine. This will allow you two full days of recovery following your leg workout. Before hitting the gym again if you just train each body part once each week.

 You’ll need every one of those 48 hours to rest and recuperate if you’re training your quads hard enough.

You have at least two days to recover after one PLP session before working out your upper body again. By doing this, you may be sure that when you work those body parts, you are completely rested.

Another choice is to perform your leg exercises first, then perform your push and pull exercises. 

As a result, you can start your workout with the hardest reps. This may have psychological benefits for individuals. By finishing the legs on Monday, you can avoid having them loom over your head all week.

Is Three Day PPL Program Enough?

As a beginner, doing one push day, one pull day, and one leg day exercise is enough. In total 3 days of exercise, a week is enough to see the results.

In fact, experts suggest that the best frequency for gaining strength and muscle is every three to four days.

While three times per week of exercise is beneficial and doable for most people, results may be slower. The perk of a 3day routine is you can be consistent with this setup for the long run. 

Is Three Day PLP Program Enough?

PLP program provides you rest days for muscles in between each split day. This means each day, you will be rested for the muscles you are going to train.

For professionals, the three-day PLP program is not the best program to follow. 

The three-day program is especially great for beginners who just started training for building muscles. It’s also great for people who want to maintain their current weight and strength. The progress will just be more subtle. 


The PLP Program By Chad Waterbury

Chad Waterbury came up with this PLP program while talking to one of his clients.

His idea for the PLP program was below – 

One day 1, you do 10 pushups, 10 lunges without any equipment, and then 10 pull-ups. 

You continue it for 30 days. Sounds quite easy right? Here’s the catch. 

On the next day, you have to increase by 1 rep. And it goes on like that. Things get tricky here.

You might wonder, ‘is it sustainable?’ which brings us to the next subsection. 

Is PLP Program By Chad Waterbury For Beginners? 

Yes, the PLP program is perfect for both beginners and experts alike. However, there’s another version that is more suitable for beginners. And that starts with 1 pushup, 1 lunge, and 1 pull-up. And you have to continue this streak for 60 days. Keep in mind that you have to increase 1 rep each day.

The 1st 30 days of this program are doable for beginners. Then comes the problem with consistency. 

Is PLP Program Sustainable?

Many people have tried this program and raved about the program. While others have complained about not being able to go on due to soreness. 

The PLP program is sustainable for people who are determined and disciplined. Because, unlike other workout programs, this PLP program has no rest days.

So after crossing 20 reps, things start to get stressful for the body. Hence, people have reported that they had to stop because their arms were sore. 

On the other hand, experts have made good remarks about this program. While they also mentioned the problem with not getting rest days.

In conclusion, the PLP program is unlikely to be sustainable for beginners. And it’s a great program from experts. The difference is due to the endurance of respective bodies. 

Is PLP Program Right For Me?

The PLP is an excellent mass-building program. It is most effective when combined with compound exercises that use all of the pushings and pulling muscles. 

Because you will be training more than two body parts on two of your three workouts, you should limit your exercise selection to the large motions that will give you the most bang for your dollars.

PLP is best suited for intermediate bodybuilders for several reasons. Advanced bodybuilders should probably divide their body parts up a little more, working no more than two body parts every workout.

This will allow them to incorporate a wider range of workouts to carve detail into the mass that they have previously produced.

Final Verdict

Now it’s time for the final verdict on the two split workout programs.

According to the experts who have tried two programs, the PPL program is better for beginners. 

The PPL program has rest days and is easy to be consistent with. Which is beginner friendly. Experts can increase the intensity however they see fit. 

PLP program on the other hand is more suitable for intermediate and expert bodybuilders. It helps greatly in building mass and endurance. 


What is a PPL program?

A straightforward training technique is called the push/pull/legs split. It involves dividing your body into three parts. Then, each component receives training on a separate day. The chest, shoulders, and triceps are all upper body pushing muscles that are trained during the “push” exercise.

What is a PLP workout?

PLP is a program that was created by Chad Waterbury originally. It involves performing one more rep of each of the three exercises Pull Ups, Lunges, and Push Ups each day for two months. Your body is divided into three parts and each day, each part is trained. This simple program requires no gear.

Is upper lower or PPL better for hypertrophy?

In general, an upper/lower split is a better choice if you’re relatively new to lifting weights, and can train 4 times a week, while a PPL routine is better suited to a more advanced lifter who’s able to train 5-6 days a week, and wants to focus on building upper body muscle groups.


That was our take on PPL or PLP debate. Hopefully, now everything is clear to you. 

And you can make a decision on which program is better for your goals. 

Best of luck on your journey to a healthier body!

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