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Conv. Deadlift Soreness (and Form Check)

Hey everyone,
I used to pull sumo in the past and had no issues with it. It didn’t put a lot of stress on my lower back, basically no stress at all. I used to only get sore glutes/ legs and lats.
Now that I train for strongman I exclusively lift conventional. But it seems to put a lot of stress on my lower and middle back. So my forst question is: “How much” soreness is normal in that areas for conv. Deadlifts (I know that this is a very vague question)? The thhng is I can’t really specify if I only experience muscle soreness or if the soreness stems from the spine itself. Probably a combination of both.
The soreness I experience is very uncomfortable during everyday activities.

Informations that might be helpful:
I am 6’2" (188cm), my hip mobily is good as well as my hamstring mobility.

Video for form check (please skip the first 1/3 of the vieo as it only includes power cleans):

As always I am happy for any pointers and helpful suggestions. Thanks in advance.

Looks like you’re too far in front of the bar which shifts the stress to your lower back.

Work on getting that chest up higher, maintaining the lower back arch and getting your shoulders back and down.

Look at the below screen cap- you are way out in front of the bar around mid shin

Like he said right when you start your pull your weight is shifting forward and on to your toes also you have a slight rounding of the back from the get go.

I suggest doing a lot of RDLs slow and with good form

i think you should go for a more vertical shin, that way your ass will be further away and you won’t be over the bar as @corstijeir said. The other thing that popped on my mind is you can go a little bit wider stance

and on the cleans - you’ll blow out your kneecap. Try catching it with your hips, not your knees
(i am pointing this out because when you catch the weight, you’ll do it in the strongest possition you have, and by changing the way you catch the clean you will be able to change your DL)

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They hit the nail on the head with the deadlifts in my opinion, so I thought I’d throw in some clean critique. Try starting with the bar a little closer to you, it seems you have it right behind your toes with your knees way out in front which is causing you to pull the back a lot more than you should have to. Try to get the bar to go almost straight up and down instead of an s motion like you are now. Also you might want grip a bit wider as the bar is meeting you a little above mid-thigh when it should be almost at your hip crease. Great work though bud keep it up!!

Bang on. Also, it looks to me like you’re locking out by extending your lower back instead of driving your hips through the bar. That could very possibly be contributing to your soreness.

Contrary to most posts in this thread, I recommend keeping your shoulders in FRONT of the bar and your lower back neutral and your chest neutral as well. Generally, trying to sit back with your chest up and shoulders behind the bar just yanks the bar into your shins and once it breaks off the floor it will just pull you forward and shoot your hips up.

Give that a shot and compare it to sitting back more with your shoulders back. I personally can’t even pull 315 without it moving slow as hell and giving me back pain if I try to sit back and drive with my legs. To me, you have to really create good tension on the bar and slowly build torque from the starting position. If you were pulling a rope 90 degrees around a concrete wall and someone was holding it against the wall really hard around the corner, you wouldn’t just keep pulling it against the edge, right? You’d get it in a straight line and slowly build torque and hoist the bar off the ground like a hydraulic fucking machine.

This has actually been my experience. Instead of shoulders behind the bar, I think armpits over the bar. That’s where the spine of the scapula is and that’s where you can get the best leverage.

I can’t tell, but it also kind of looks like you’re dl’ing like you’re doing a clean minus the second pull. In a good clean, your back angle will be about the same and your hips about as far back as you started the pull up the knees. With a deadlift, you start pushing your hips closer to bar and becoming more and more upright from the start.


I’m not a fan of shoulders behind the bar either. Perhaps that’s how it was interpreted when I said back and down. I meant it relative to where he has been pulling it from. That said I think we all agree he’s got some technique tweaks to try out and see if they alleviate his issues and increase his pull.

I got zero advice for the clean because my method of cleaning usually involves a broom :slight_smile:

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I think that’s again because OP is trying to deadlift like a power clean.

To make sure you’re ingraining the right movement patterns, it might be a good idea to put cleans on another day or even drop cleans all together for the time being so you can focus on DL mechanics without getting them mixed up with clean mechanics.

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Thank you for all the tips guys and I am glad that I got some feedback on my power clean technique as well.

I think for my next sessions I will concentrate on a more vertical shin angle and a higher hip position to shift the stress more towards my hamstrings and glutes.

For cleans I am not sure how to catch the bar with my hips instead of my knees. Catch the bar with locked out knees? I may shift cleans to a different training day but won’t abandon them completely.

I will make sure to update this thread with more videos as soon as I get more.

Can’t get back to everyone’s answers because I currently am on vacation in Denmark but I appreciate all of your input.

It has been a while! Currently I have to deal with an injured hip and can not squat (at all) or conventional deadlift (any significant weight).
Anyway after my sumo deadlifts I have done some technique work on my conventional deadlifts to update this thread.
What I have changed: Widened stance and grip a good bit + concentrated on a more vertical shin angle.