WHY DO WE DEADLIFT?
THE CONVENTIONAL DEADLIFT:
- Targets the most amount of muscles in our body, engaging all major muscle groups.
- The lift also helps improve our core strength, posture and grip strength.
THE ROMANIAN DEADLIFT (RDL):
- Works your hamstring and glute strength while taking your quadriceps out of the movement
A lot of people tend to avoid these exercises due to the constant back pain they receive when doing this.
1. STOP USING YOUR BACK
Always ensure your spine is in a neutral position meaning to maintain the natural arch you have when you stand. This is the strongest position for the spine. Your lower back should not round when you are lifting (pictured below).
If you continue incorrectly through a back-dominant deadlift pattern, you’ll have an exaggerated back arch and you will injure yourself. Remember Deadlifts are NOT a lower back exercise.
2. IMPROVE YOUR TECHNIQUE
One of the biggest mistakes most people make is in the starting position when the bar is too far away from the shins. Here are a few simple steps to correct and improve your technique:
- STANCE POSITION – start with your feet hip width apart
- KEEP THE BAR CLOSE- the bar should be touching your shins before you lift. The closer you keep the bar’s centre of mass to your own, the better leverage you will have throughout the exercise.
- CREATE TENSION- All major muscle groups should be switched on before you lift. Tension through your elbows, lats, stomach and heels will increase stability and strength.
- CHEST UP- If your chest is too low, your shoulders will be in front of the bar and at some point you will have to use your upper body (which is what we don’t want).
- BREATHE- Inhale before pulling the bar off the floor, hold your breath while you pull the weight. Lower the weight back on the floor and exhale this creates stability through the spine.
- RE-SET – Between each rep, ensure the bar is in the correct position, your hips are pushed back, your shoulders are set and your back is in a neutral position drive through your heels.
3. PROGRESSIVE OVERLOAD
Another mistake people can make is ignoring the progressive overload rule and make huge jumps between warm-up sets and between session to session.
If you did deadlifts with 60kg × 5 reps with very sloppy and incorrect form then don’t expect to hit 80kg × 5 with good form because it won”t happen!
The jumps that you will make really depend on how strong you are. If you can do deadlifts with 60 kg x 5 with good form then a good warm-up for 5 x 5 program might be something like this:
30 kg x 5
40 kg x 5
45 kg x 5
50 kg x 5
60 kg x 5
This way you aren’t pre-exhausting yourself on your early lifts.
4. REP RANGE
You don’t always need to lift heavy. Quite often this is when the form drops.
Change the rep ranges from 1 – 5 to 5 – 8 reps .
If you are still having problems as it may be a structural, postural or muscle imbalance issue that requires an assessment send us an email!