Independent RP Hypertrophy App Review

Is the new Renaissance Periodization Hypertrophy App worth it?

Independent RP Hypertrophy App Review

If you're looking for an honest, independent review of the RP Hypertrophy app, you've come to the right place.

Is the new RP hypertrophy app the secret weapon you've been missing, or just another bodybuilding fad? Let's find out together.

But before we jump in, a quick disclaimer.

Why should you listen to me?

I’ve been a lifter and a coach for 20 years, and a trainer for the Canadian Forces.

I have a B.Sc in exercise science and a PhD in Public Health/Epidemiology (health statistics). I’ve helped about 10,000 people get in shape 1-on-1, in group classes, and online.

And I walk the walk, being in decent shape myself.

Dr. Carl Juneau before and after body transformation
In 2009, I got really sick and out of shape. As a personal trainer, that was rough. I finally got better and gained back 27.7 lbs (I'm 5'7)

In 2016, I finished my PhD, gathered a small team, and started building Dr. Muscle.

Dr. Muscle is the world's first AI personal trainer. Imagine ChatGPT, but for lifting. Automated yet personal, with expert coaching and workouts unique to you—optimized to help you build muscle and strength faster, on autopilot.

In a way, we compete with the RP app, so you might expect me to bash them.

But frankly, I won’t.

I’ll just show you what I found and let you make an educated decision.

For another perspective, you can also check out this 13-point training critique of the RP app by Garett Reid, MSc.

RP Hypertrophy App Review

I've been checking out what people have to say about it. Here's the scoop.

  • Users have said that the app is good at evaluating their training based on variables that matter for hypertrophy: pump, soreness, perceived effort, and progressive overload​1​​2​. Indeed, the RP Hypertrophy App uses self-reported data like your "quality of pump" and soreness to adjust your training volume.
  • People seem to like it, but it's not all roses. A few users have suggested tweaking the app's 4-week mesocycle to 5 or 6 weeks for better results​1​. One of the things they like is that the app allows you to manually add a set or two if needed. But be careful, don't go overboard​1​.
  • Other users have praised other features of the RP Hypertrophy app, like its periodization element1​.

However, the RP Hypertrophy app isn't without its downsides.

  • The price tag is one of them. At $20 or $25 per month, some users find it too steep for their liking​1​.
  • There's also been some debate about whether it's really an "app". It's hosted on a website, so you need an internet connection to use it. Not ideal if your gym has spotty reception​1​. It's also been described as a web interface with the book/templates and their rating system, rather than a traditional mobile app​1
  • Another point to consider is the app's simplicity. It's basic-looking and doesn't offer a wide variety of exercise choices. This might be a drawback if you prefer a more robust or visually appealing interface​1​.
  • The RP training methodology is built on theoretical ideas (no hard evidence) and may overly complicate muscle growth.

RP Hypertrophy App Pros and Cons

Let's break down the pros and cons of the RP Hypertrophy app:


  • Individualized Training: The app adjusts your training volume based on self-reported data like "quality of pump" and soreness​1​.
  • Focus on Hypertrophy Variables: It evaluates your training based on factors relevant to muscle growth: pump, soreness, perceived effort, and progressive overload​2​.
  • Promotes Progressive Overload: The app guides you to increase volume, weight, and decrease the Reps in Reserve (RIR) over a 4-6 week wave and then deload​2​.


  • Cost: At $20 or $25 per month, the app is quite pricey, and some users have stated that they can't justify the cost for the value it provides​2​.
  • Offline Usage: The app can't be used offline, which might be inconvenient if your gym doesn't have perfect reception​2​.
  • Limited Features: Some users have mentioned that the app could benefit from additional features such as a plate calculator or warm up calculator​2​.
  • Short Mesocycle: The app's 4-week mesocycle might be a bit short, and users have found they need to manually add sets especially when the app suggests only one set for a body part​2​.
  • Incomplete: No personalized programs, no rest periods prescribed, and minimal help, if any, with choosing exercises.

To learn more about the shortcomings of the RP Hypertrophy App, check out this in-depth, 13-point training critique by Garett Reid, MSc.

Renaissance Periodization App Hypertrophy Progression

If the RP Hypertrophy App is to be any good, it has to be based on sound exercise science.

Especially when it comes to progressive overload.

This is where the controversy begins. Problem is, the team at Renaissance Periodization are basing their hypertrophy app on their unique approach to progression.

But many trainers believe it's subpar, including noted exercise scientist Dr. Eric Helms, PhD.

This sparked a debate hosted by Stevel Hall of the Revive Stronger podcast.

You can watch it here:

In conclusion: Is the RP Hypertrophy App worth it?

So, what's the bottom line?

The RP Hypertrophy app offers a unique approach to muscle building. It has its strengths, like a focus on hypertrophy and individualized adjustments. But it also has its weaknesses, like offline usage, cost, and training limitations. It might be good for pure hypertrophy, but it might not be the best fit for everyone's budget or training preferences​1​.

Is it worth the investment? The jury is still out. Some users love the training style and content, but think it's possible to achieve similar results with self-programming​1​. Some professionals have also critiqued RP's training methodology.

Looking for an established, powerful, and free alternative? Try Dr. Muscle. Of course, we're biased. But we believe the results hundreds of users have gotten so far speak for themselves.

In the end, do your research, consider your needs and goals, and make the choice that's right for you. Remember, the best training program is also the one you'll stick with.

Stay strong!