T Nation

Building Me a Stronger Deadlift

I currently weigh in at 160 pounds I need to remain within cutting distance of 165 (bodyweight is currently still coming back after cutting to 150 pounds, 3 poudns underweight). I’ve lost some strength since before I cut and I have a goal of 4 plates+ for next year’s meets. My deadlift has been stagnant. here’s some thnigs about me:

-I deadlift sumo
-can deadlift 315 for 2-3 nonconsecutive reps
-hard time getting the initial oomph off the ground
grip is somewhat holding me back but I’m getting COC for my bday.
-My fingers are coming apart at lockout on the deadlift so I can’t hold lockout for more then a few seconds

-I deadlift AFTER doing boxsquats will I be less fatigues in glutes/hammies if I do normal squats instead?

  • Since ALL of my lifts need to get bigger I don’t really think I should do some specialized program

I use a westside style split not exactly the same in a nutshell I do 2 ME lower body sessions and my second upper body is going to rotate between DE and ME. Doing DE for extende dperiods of time has negative consequences on my elbows, and I got weaker when doing it with boxsquats.

Monday:
Boxsquat
deadlift
ghr
calves

Tuesday:
Flat bench press
military press
chins
incline DB press

Thursday:
snatch
Boxsquat
ghr
calves

Friday:
rotating DE/ME bench
clean and jerk
bent over row
chins

I know the first thnig posted here will be “get bigger, and stronger” And I realise that, but I’ve just been pretty stagnant.

Hand grippers actually have very little carryover to your dead grip strength. You seem to need work here. Heavy Db rows help the dead a lot as does just holding heavy bars quite frankly. You didn’t mention any abs in there. Abs are critical in breaking the floor.

I think you should just go back to the classic 2 ME days and 2 DE days for your next cycle. Doing singles on box squat twice a week is going to lead you nowhere…
You know the good old expressions: stand on the shoulders of giants; don’t reinvent the wheel!

Also, from what I understand you’re supposed to rotate your main exercises every X week to be able to keep going with singles.

Hope I’ve been helpful!

How long have you been training? If I were you I would do a Bill Starr esque training program.

[quote]usawa wrote:
How long have you been training? If I were you I would do a Bill Starr esque training program.[/quote]

a year and a few months. I’ve done 5x5 before, and I can’t squat 3x a week and make steady progress. I’ll start training abs on my lower body days. I’ll also I guess not do heavy weight on box squats on my first lowerbody session. I honestly just hurt myself doing DE and I don’t like being hurt.

do olympic lifting and want to remain OL so a 5x5 isn’t really an option to me right now. I kind of assumed all the pulling and squatting I did would train my abs but I guess oppinions on ehre differ. I’ll start doing them 2-3x a week, got an excercise recomendation? I’ll also swap barbell rows for dumbell rows. Does this sound good.

EDIT:
I think I’ll just go up to 80% of my best lift from my previous boxsquat session. This will keep my from going for a max twice a week. I think I’ll start trying doing DE work again on bench, I just never really saw any benefits from doing box squats with it.

You could try pulling from a deficit (ie standing on a 1", 2" then 3" plank getting stronger then work back down to the floor), though thats not always easy if you are lifting sumo. Have you tried extra wide sumo? You put an oly collar on the bar BEFORE the first plates, this allows you to get wider than normal.

If you do heavy BB shrugs try holding them a little longer to improve grip (no straps of course)
Also pullthroughs might help, check out the Elite FTS site: http://www.elitefts.com/

Zep, I got loads of help with my technique on my thread. Definitely worth taking a look at:

http://www.T-Nation.com/tmagnum/readTopic.do?id=1999983

For grip, nothing has helped me more than doing plenty of my deads and assistance stuff double overhand. I’m still weak all over in fairness, but at the moment I could pull very close to my max double overhand, so this alone has pretty much helped me eliminate grip as a weak link.

Also, something I stumbled upon was doing heavy curls after doing shrugs without straps. The weight felt so light that I smashed my PRs.

[quote]Old Dax wrote:
You could try pulling from a deficit (ie standing on a 1", 2" then 3" plank getting stronger then work back down to the floor), though thats not always easy if you are lifting sumo. Have you tried extra wide sumo? You put an oly collar on the bar BEFORE the first plates, this allows you to get wider than normal.

If you do heavy BB shrugs try holding them a little longer to improve grip (no straps of course)
Also pullthroughs might help, check out the Elite FTS site: http://www.elitefts.com/ [/quote]

If he has access to pulling against bands that will do well for the grip. Hold a few extra seconds at the top. My sumo jump stretch platform will give me 250+ extra pounds at lockout. Any time I set a pr, I’ll hold it for 3-5 seconds as a celebration and a big F U to the bar.

But it’s good for the grip.

you could try one-arm deadlifts, instead of DE you should do RE, not a second ME that would be nuts.so 1 week DE followed by 1 week RE with a separate day each week for ME just to spell it out.
You could do clean grip shrugs to build grip as well.

Abs are crucials for coming off the floor? I am curious about this. what processes does the body go through ie how do they activate to help you get off the floor better?

i am slow off the floor as well and stuck around a 335 deadlift with good form, but i lockout very fast. grip also an issue.

dont mean to hijack this thread but i have the same problems as the OP, for grip i have a chinup bar in my basement that i wrapped some plumbing foam around ( its like a 2" squishy thick bar) and i basically hang from it for a count every day, greasing the groove. Then ill add a second or two the next day. will this help with grip?

i have longer femurs in relation to my body, should i be pulling sumo? I currently do conventional.

what kind of ab training will carry over to deadlift especially off the ground?

once again sorry to hijack but i think we both as the same questions

[quote]sapasion wrote:
Hand grippers actually have very little carryover to your dead grip strength. You seem to need work here. Heavy Db rows help the dead a lot as does just holding heavy bars quite frankly. You didn’t mention any abs in there. Abs are critical in breaking the floor.[/quote]

I second this, I love the handgrippers (own the coc trainer, 1, 2, 3 and some other off brand grippers) but they help very little for the deadlift grip strength. Do you use chalk? Looks like you use an alternating grip in your pictures and thats good.

I weigh 165 as well and my deadlift goes like this: double overhand with no chalk I can pull about up to 315, alternating grip no chalk probably 455+, alternating grip with chalk-haven’t had a problem gripping anything and I am pulling in the mid-upper 500’s right now (545 last comp).

Also, some people have success with the hook grip (though I find it too awkward), and I have heard for grip strength on deadlift you really want to train the fingers (I believe andy bolton said that) as if you train your palms too much (grippers) your palms actually grow and push the bar out into a less advantageous grip spot. But maybe I am totally butchering that advice, anyhow, good luck

so… how do you train the fingers?

[quote]hareboll wrote:
sapasion wrote:
Hand grippers actually have very little carryover to your dead grip strength. You seem to need work here. Heavy Db rows help the dead a lot as does just holding heavy bars quite frankly. You didn’t mention any abs in there. Abs are critical in breaking the floor.

I second this, I love the handgrippers (own the coc trainer, 1, 2, 3 and some other off brand grippers) but they help very little for the deadlift grip strength. Do you use chalk? Looks like you use an alternating grip in your pictures and thats good. I weigh 165 as well and my deadlift goes like this: double overhand with no chalk I can pull about up to 315, alternating grip no chalk probably 455+, alternating grip with chalk-haven’t had a problem gripping anything and I am pulling in the mid-upper 500’s right now (545 last comp).

Also, some people have success with the hook grip (though I find it too awkward), and I have heard for grip strength on deadlift you really want to train the fingers (I believe andy bolton said that) as if you train your palms too much (grippers) your palms actually grow and push the bar out into a less advantageous grip spot. But maybe I am totally butchering that advice, anyhow, good luck[/quote]

I’ll do dead hangs from a chinup bar with weight once a week. Schultzie it’s cool. the more peopele that benefit from a thread the better. DE work just pisses me off as I never feel like i get anything out of it. REgaurdless of how much weight is on the bar I can’t get explosive enough, or fatigue myself at all. on lower body DE I just can’t go fast enough. Idk what I should do.

[quote]schultzie wrote:
so… how do you train the fingers?[/quote]

Bodyweight hangs for time with only the fingers wrapped around the support. No thumbs, no palming. Once you get to aminute, add weight.

[quote]schultzie wrote:
Abs are crucials for coming off the floor? I am curious about this. what processes does the body go through ie how do they activate to help you get off the floor better?
[/quote]

Think about it this way, your hands are connected to your arms which are connected to your shoulders. They’re connected to your legs by your abs/back. This is where all the force is going thru. If they’re not strong enough to stabilise you in a solid position you get bent over forwards and some of the initial drive is lost.

On the grip issue…

I don’t think finger strength or CoC strength matters a damn for deadlifting. What helped my grip was holding a bar of some sort and KEEPING my hand closed. Not opening and closing it. Not hanging on with my finger tips.

The best things I found (in order) were;

-Farmers walks
-One Arm Dumbbell Rows (high rep Kroc Rows)
-Double overhand shrugs

[quote]Hanley wrote:
schultzie wrote:
Abs are crucials for coming off the floor? I am curious about this. what processes does the body go through ie how do they activate to help you get off the floor better?

Think about it this way, your hands are connected to your arms which are connected to your shoulders. They’re connected to your legs by your abs/back. This is where all the force is going thru. If they’re not strong enough to stabilise you in a solid position you get bent over forwards and some of the initial drive is lost.

On the grip issue…

I don’t think finger strength or CoC strength matters a damn for deadlifting. What helped my grip was holding a bar of some sort and KEEPING my hand closed. Not opening and closing it. Not hanging on with my finger tips.

The best things I found (in order) were;

-Farmers walks
-One Arm Dumbbell Rows (high rep Kroc Rows)
-Double overhand shrugs[/quote]

I really should buy some farmer’s walk bars this summer. what sorts of ab excersizes should I do? I never could get a clear cut description of doing cable abs. I’m doing the dead hang thing starting next week. ALSO will db rows have more carryover then the barbell row?

I didn’t even go that heavy on the farmers walks tbh. Just 50kg 'bells but with lots of turns and lots of movement, I felt it made them harder to hold onto.

The best thing I’ve done for my abs is lots of moderately heavy beltless squats. Hell even now I try to avoid wearing a belt as much as possible to keep the strength there. I’ve had good success with decline weighted sit ups and hanging leg raises too.

With the dumbbell rows, in my opinion it’s important to remember why you’re doing them. I wasn’t doing them for my lats, I was doing them for my upper back and grip, so my form might have been a bit looser than normal. So to that end, yes i think they would carryover better than BB rows. This is the form I was using; http://ie.youtube.com/watch?v=E-gwHEovmZQ

[quote]Hanley wrote:
I didn’t even go that heavy on the farmers walks tbh. Just 50kg 'bells but with lots of turns and lots of movement, I felt it made them harder to hold onto.

The best thing I’ve done for my abs is lots of moderately heavy beltless squats. Hell even now I try to avoid wearing a belt as much as possible to keep the strength there. I’ve had good success with decline weighted sit ups and hanging leg raises too.

With the dumbbell rows, in my opinion it’s important to remember why you’re doing them. I wasn’t doing them for my lats, I was doing them for my upper back and grip, so my form might have been a bit looser than normal. So to that end, yes i think they would carryover better than BB rows. This is the form I was using; http://ie.youtube.com/watch?v=E-gwHEovmZQ
[/quote]

yeah, I’ll switch to the db rows. There is a lot of conflicting information on if abs need to be targetted directly, I think I’ll stick with the beltless appreoach too for now. I got it using them alot prepping for competition, but now that I’m in the offseason i should probably stop.

by the way:
sweet kicks, I wonder how much of the demographic here wears chucks.

You Squat and Deadlift on the Same Day? I can’t handle that. I think only Novice Lifters can handle that. You, my friend are an Intermediate Lifter. I think you need to Adjust.

You know who Deadlifts and Squats on the Same Day? Andy Bolton. You know how?
cnpprofessional.co.uk/blog.php/andy-bolton-
cnp-athlete-is-featured-in-junes-addition-
of-muscle-fitness-blog-210.html

If you want to Train your Olympic Lifts and Deadlifts in the same program you can Cycle in Olympic Lifts as ME lifts. I do this.

Sunday: Snatch/Rack Deadlift/Clean/Deadlift
Wednesday: Box Squat/Front Squat/Box Squat/Zercher Squat

I missed this crucial point for the first few months I did WS4SB and made progress anyway but WS4SB and Westside WILL NOT WORK unless you cycle the core exercises frequently.

Doing the Clean and Jerk on your Bench Day will make Squatting Twice a Week and Benching Twice a Week very Hard.

[quote]Hanley wrote:
On the grip issue…

I don’t think finger strength or CoC strength matters a damn for deadlifting. What helped my grip was holding a bar of some sort and KEEPING my hand closed. Not opening and closing it. Not hanging on with my finger tips.

The best things I found (in order) were;

-Farmers walks
-One Arm Dumbbell Rows (high rep Kroc Rows)
-Double overhand shrugs[/quote]

I’m not really in the position to be giving deadlift advise, but about 6 months ago the bar would start to slip out of my hands at about 275lbs and if I couldn’t get the lockout and back to the ground within 3-5 seconds I’d lose it. Now my grip still needs work, but it’s not the limiting factor.

I can’t say for sure what worked, but here’s what I did:

-same 3 as Hanley above;
-use double overhand grip for as many of my warm-up and work sets as I could, then switch to over/under (alternating each set);
-snatch grip DL (focusing on keeping by pinky wrapped around the bar);and
-squeezing the bar on every rep of every set of every movement.

Again I can’t say for sure but I think the last was the most important, I’d squeeze the hell out of the bar on every set of squats, bench, rows, etc… everything. Also I’d focus on the grip of my pinky and thumb. Since the pinky is always the first to go (for me anyway), if it stayed wrapped so did every other finger.

The above work allowed me to do a 405 rack pull with about the same slippage as the 275 was causing 6 months ago.

Hope some of that helps.