Bloody shins

Guys I’ve been deadlifting now for about 2 years on and off.
Just recently I’ve realy started on using correct technique.
But I always have bloody shins after each set. My gym has a sign that says no chalk right in front of where I do deads.

Anyone else have this problem.
I can always wear pants, but I hate wearing pants in the gym.

oh yeah… anyone check out I’m thinking of joining.

I place one of those cylindrical pads (usually used to cushion the traps/shoulders for squatting) around the bar when I do my deads–it helps to save my shins, though I sometimes still get slight abrasions from the velcro. Hell, you know it’s been a good workout if you’re bleeding, right?

I get those every week, along with some bruises. I feel that they are a rite of passage to having a good deadlifting workout. If they really bother you just cover your shins with duct tape, I also hear rubbing chalk on your shins helps.

Bloody shins are an indication of proper deadlifting form, but it does such having your shins cut up all the time. Since i also hate wearing pants when doing legs i used to wrap my knee wraps around my shins. Might have looked a little funny, but it did the job.

Before I got my York Comp. Olympic bar, I used to get bloody thigs when cleaning and snatching. The old bar had extreme knurling. I used to just spray a little WD-40 on my thighs before lifting.
When I was done, I’d wipe the bar down with a cloth, and if necessary some chalk. Never had a problem with it becoming slippery.

I use a Trap Bar and don’t have to worry about my shins. I also find it easier to keep better form with a Trap Bar.

It is funny to see the looks of the people at my gym when I do deadlifts. It is even funnier when some guy taps me on the shoulder and asks if I knew I was bleeding on my shins. I have a nice scar on my right shin from the multiple scratches. I just do it and don’t care about the bleeding, it is never all that much.


If you dont mind looking like a goober, you can use some of the knee high soccer socks to prevent the scraping.

most PLers i know that put stuff on their shins use talc or baby powder. or you could wear long socks and pull them up when DLing?

Hm, I just wear pants. Why don’t ya’ll like wearing pants? Do they restrict your movement?


I perform my deads with proper form and i never have bloody shins, as a matter of fact, I never have hit my shins once.

change gyms or take down the sign.

what type of gym doesn’t all chalk?

ive never hit my shins either, the only cuts you’ll find are from hockey sticks/pucks

Me too…

Am I doing something wrong??

Or are sumo deadlifts different? (I only do sumos for now)

bloody shins is proper form? Im relatively new to deadlifts, but i dont see how you scrape your leg. Do you lift and lower the bar explosively? Isnt it a relatively “slower” movement as opposed to a powerclean? or am i wrong.

I’ve never had trouble scraping my shins either. I wonder if it’s a height/lifting mechanics thing. For the people who don’t scrape your shins; are you tall (over 6’)? I’m 6’1" and don’t know if this has anything to do with it. Deadlifting is by far my strongest lift too.

I was once a BAD BLEEDER! I treated DL’s like a reverse-squat. (trying to protect my LB back) - Now I push with the legs and pull with the back Simultaneously … and my LB & UB are stronger than ever. Oh, my shins are fully healed now.

Singed, Ex Bleeder.

P.S. You can always sneak in a “small” piece of chalk… just don’t make a show out of it.

When I started doing deads for the 1st year or so I didn’t have bloody shins.
Then I realy started working on differant kinds of forms. And watched Ian King video on the deads. I am doing deads the way he instructs to do them.

I dont think if your shins bleed your doing them wrong. And I dont think if your shins dont bleed your doing them wrong. There is many dif. forms I’ve seen out there when people do the dead. I see so many people with rounded backs doing deads and barely and bend in there knees @ all. They lift primarily with the lower back.

I get into position bend down. Squeeze my butt checks and abs, do my best to keep my back as straight as possible, retract my shoulder blades, chest out. Then when I’m ready I tighten up the slack in my arms and legs and lift, doing my best to keep my shoulders slightly in front of the bar then when above my knees explode with by pushing my hips forward while sticking out my chest. This way I find to be the best looking. Using more musccle groups. And yes I deadlift a little less then I would be if I didnt care about form or my lower back. But I find this way to be the most taxing on my body.

I would recomend watching kings deadlift video.

I know there are many other techniques people use when deadlifting, again this is how I do it. And trust me, if you do it right and look in a mirror with a side angle it’s beautiful when all put together corectly. Looks like water flow down a river. FLUENT!

Read Dave Tate’s article. The form Westside lifters use should keep the bar away from your shins.


“…do my best to keep my back as straight as possible…”

If the spinal angle is too upright, you will not be able to properly recruit your hamstrings… and the possible load capacity will be greatly