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Deadlift Bar Question

I recently switched gyms and the new gym has a much thicker bar that I use for deadlifting. I believe as a consequence of this, I have lost some strength. At the old gym, I did 465x2 now I barely got 450 up. I use a mixed grip, chalk and no straps. This new bar is much more difficult to hold but I can still hold it. Would this affect how much I pull?

Also, my sticking point has changed. It used to be getting the bar off the floor and now it is slightly below my knees. Could this be due to it being a stiffer bar and causing me to have a slower bar speed off the ground?

Appreciate any comments!
A longtime lurker.

Bars definitely have an effect on how you pull. I don’t know if your former gym had a legitimate deadlifting bar, but the difference between one and a more standard use, thicker bar is pretty substantial. Thinner bars with more whip allow you to really pull slack out of the bar prior to breaking from the floor, which effectively shortens the length of the pull.

Your speed off of the floor would of course be effected as well, so your sticking point would change. Thinner bars also allow for a tighter grip, which improves activation in the lats/upper back.

With that said, its not necessarily all that bad. Its certainly harder to pull this way, but if you ever switched back to a deadlifting bar (for a meet, etc.) you’d probably be able to pull more because of it.

Sounds like a good thing to be honest. It’s revealed a weakness disguised by the nature of the bar you used to use. Remember to flex your ass to break through that sticking point, and have your assistance work consist of more glute/hamstring type movements. Maybe do some Dimel Deadlifts and Glute Ham Raises for example.

The decreased grip can definitely impact your “perceived” strength. If the grip is iffy, your muscles don’t recruit motor units as well. Even if you don’t actually drop the bar, it “feels” much heavier.

You haven’t lost any strength, you are simply using a different implement. If you went from benching with a regular bar to benching with a fat bar and used less weight, it wouldn’t be a loss of strength.

I would say get straps for your training lifts, and train your grip outside of lifting. The only time I ever pull without straps is in comp, and I’ve managed a 601 pull at 180 in a meet with that appraoch with no issues with my grip.