A lot of people struggle when trying to do a proper deadlift. If you are one of them, here we'll show you how to deadlift and master the technique as if you were born for it.
Are you ready? Let's go!
Deadlift is one of the most popular and recommended movements to build muscle and work on your strength.
It focus the stimulus on the lower body (harmstrings, quads…), but it also involves your back, forearms, arms, shoulders, and core.
Deadlift is considered the most general exercise to train your body.
An exercise is considered deadlift if it involves lifting off the bar from the ground to the level of the hips, torso perpendicular to the ground.
Types of Deadlift
There are different types of deadlift. Each of them has a different pattern of movement, and focuses on different muscles.
The choice of deadlift will depend on your preferences and goals.
These are the main types of deadlift:
- Conventional deadlift
- Sumo deadlift
- Stiffed Legs deadlift
- Romanian deadlift
- Hex Bar deadlift
Why Should You Deadlift?
Deadlift is well deserved to be one of the most popular training exercises.
Besides it’s clear effect on your strength and muscle, there are many reasons why you should consider doing deadlift.
Deadlift doesn’t need of complex requirement. It’s a very safe movement, and helps you activate almost every single muscle in your body.
It shows to improve your body posture, and reduce lower back pain (1)(2)
How to Deadlift
The deadlift movement consists on three differentiated parts:
- Initial position: lifting the bar off the ground
- The lifting: transition to lift the bar to your hips
- Ending position: perpendicular torso to the ground and bar on your hips
The deadlift begins with a bar sitting on the floor.
The goal of the initial phase is to lift the bar off the floor and start the lifting.
To be as efficient as possible during this phase, you should work on your initial body position.
Neutral spinal chord, strong grip and long bracing are three essential features for a successful deadlift. It will keep you stable and compact during the initial lifting.
Up to this point, the lifting bar is off the floor, and it’s somewhere in between your shins and hips.
This is the hardest part of the movement. It’s when the bar is most distant from your gravity center. Because the levers of your muscles to the bar are longer, this part of the lifting will be the limiting factor.
For a successful deadlift, coordinate between your upper and lower body to keep the bar as close to your body as possible.
Keep the back as straight as possible. For the perfect deadlift, focus on extending the knees while doing a hip extension with your back.
The ending position is the last stage of the deadlift.
The bar is now at the height of your hips. You are now in a standing position, with a strong grip, straigh back, and extended knees.
To successfuly end a deadlift, you should reach the point in where your back is “blocked”, and doesn’t need to maintain the lifitng bar in huge tension.
If your back is not straight and aligned with your body, it will have to maintain the weight of the bar and it will probably end up suffering.
To end the deadlift, drop the bar to the floor, and give yourself a clap on the shoulder for the amazing work you just did.
Frequent Questions About Deadlift
How Wide My Grip Should Be?
The width of the grip depends on your stand. Grab the bar in a way that is not in constant contact with your knees and/or thighs.
If you are doing conventional deadlift, take the width of the grip by the line of your shoulders. If it’s sumo, you could go a bit narrower than that.
How can I Straighten my Lower Back?
Your lower back will tend to bend and form an arch. This will make it easier for you to reach the bar on the floor.
However, an arched back won’t let you do put all the strength you have. The trasmission of strength throughout your body won’t be optimal.
To straigthen the back, push your butt out and retract your scapulae. You will feel your back compact and under tension.
Do I Need Lifting Straps to do Deadlift?
One of the main limiting factors on a deadlift is the grip. The bar slips off the bar, or your hand is not able to grab all the weight you are trying to lift.
If this is the case, then you could you use lifting straps help you reduce the grip demands.
If you have enough grip strength to withstand the weight of the bar during the entire deadlfit, then lifting straps are not for you at the moment.
How much should I deadlift?
Deadlift is a very demanding exercise. Because it involves all your body, it creates a lot of fatigue in your central nervous system (CNS)
Doing 1-2 sessions of deadlift is more than enough. Remember, more is not always better.
How Should I progress in Deadlift?
The progession in deadlift follows the same principle as in any other exercise
Do a progressive overload and make sure you get stronger every session.
Increase reps, weights, or improve your deadlift technique.
How to progress is more about your preferences and taste, but make sure you put a bit more in every session
Deadlift is one of the most popular and recommended movements to work on your muscle mass and strength.
The deadlift consists on three phases; initial, lifting, and ending. The goal of a deadlift is to pull the bar from the floor to the height of your hips starting with the torso parallel to the floor.