T Nation

Deadlift Form Check


Just started lifting again after taking 1-2 months off due to sickness and injury. This was done 5 weeks after I started lifting again and I felt like most of the time my form isn't too good (I never had a trainer or coach to teach me). So I started recording my lifts and found that this one was better form than my previous attempts but I'm still not confident. Help me out guys.

140kg 4x @70kg BW.

EDIT One more thing I forgot to ask.

I covered my barbell with hockey tape (at least where I grip it for Deads) cause it's very slippery and I could barely pull 120kg without the tape. Will my grip suffer or is it considered the same as using chalk? Also, is it still a "RAW" lift when you use chalk?


I'd prefer to be able to see your whole body, but the first thing I notice is this: When you start the lift, your hips rise before the bar rises. That is not ideal form. Work on keeping your butt lower and driving with your quads at the start of the movement, instead of bringing your hips up and having your lower back do all the work.

On the other hand, bravo for doing dead-stop deadlifts, and not bouncing them off the floor.


I've actually been told that. Definitely need to work on that on my next training session.

Is what I'm doing dangerous or is it just me using the wrong muscle or certain muscle too early?

And thanks. I try hard to not let them drop or bounce off the floor cause it makes too much noise. My sister actually came in after my 4th rep cause the walls were shaking and she heard me grunt so she thought I injured myself so I had to edit it out ^^

I'll try to get a whole body shot next time but it's hard cause my room's not big enough.


This first part is going to be tough advice because of your lifting location - but once the weight goes past your knees on the way down, you should really drop it (keep your hands around it but provide minimal resistance and let it crash). Slow eccentrics will hurt your knees at heavier weights. Don't bounce it though - reset yourself between reps after it crashes, like you've been doing.

Pushing your hips up before the lift starts isn't a big deal, as long as you are still initiating the lift with your quads. Some people set themselves up this way, but make sure that no matter what you do pre-lift, your quads are what moves the bar off the ground and not your low back.

Your lower back looks slightly rounded to me. To practice arching lower back (and sticking your hips back), place your hands on the top of your thighs from a standing position, and run them down your legs until they hit your knees without bending over at all. Just stick your hips back and lower yourself that way.

Once the bar passes your knees, you need to force you hips forward with your glutes/ass. It looks like you are doing the top half of the lift by pulling with your lower back, instead of by pulling your hips through. When the bar gets to your knees, squeeze your hams and glutes with all you got. Your ass isn't sticking far enough back at the point where the bar hits your knees.

You have a good start. Hopefully these pointers help you.


If you put it like that when you lift with the Quads, I get what I'm doing wrong now.

Thanks a lot. Perfect time too cause I was just about to lift.


you r using a lot of lower back and not enough hams/quads/glutes/hips. the most important thing to keep in mind: on the eccentric part of the movement (when you lower the bar to the floor) after you pass the knees DROP the weight. this way you loose the tension on your lower back... and you will still be able to deadlift for the years to come. the rest was explained by scj119


also try to do some assistance work too - exercises to strengthen your core/hams/glutes


Yeh, I always feel that my hips, glutes and legs don't feel used at all compared to my back. I tried using the quads more today but I don't think my form's improved at all.

Here's the video with me trying on lighter weight:

I tried starting with my quads instead of the hips but I'm not entirely sure how it ended up. When I was pulling 148kg 2x today though I dropped it on the way down just after it passed my knees and it did feel much better. Bit rough on the neighbours downstairs but whatever lol.

Apart from me not dropping the bar going down, is my form dangerous? Should I stop deadlifting heavy until I get it sorted?

EDIT Sorry for the terrible light and position again in the video. I'll move into the living room area next time.


in the second vid your form has improved... but I think it's only because you use a lighter weight. practice makes perfect form and the perfect form is what serves YOU the best (based on your built). apart from this what are your goals? what do u plan to accomplish with all the deadlifting? and why don't you invest in a gym membership?


Good work kiddo.
I would like to see you having more explosive action through the hips as you bring the bar up. Really try thrust your hips foward like your banging some hot chick you picked up at your local bar. This will get the glutes involved.

There is nothing that I can see you doing that is dangerous. Keep working on your flexibility always.

Uncle Birdy.

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Well I'm trying to increase my bench, squat and deadlifts but at the moment, it's only deadlifts I'm doing since I don't have a bench yet and a rack. So instead I'm doing a lot of push ups and max I can do with squats is 38kg cause I don't have a rack yet. I'm also doing everything I can do with my olympic barbell and dumbells to work on shoulders, bis, tris, upper back, traps and with lower body, I do a lot of body weight exercises at home which I do for cardio for rugby.

Basically my goals are to get stronger and fitter for rugby. Not specifically stronger for rugby but in terms of deadlift, squats and bench.

I don't have a gym membership cause I thought it'd be cheaper to get my own stuff in the long run. In less than a month, I should have my bench and squat rack to complete my set at home along with my 300lbs of weights + olympic barbell and dumbells.


If u decided to work out at home I would suggest you wait until you have all the equipment you need and then establish a balanced routine that can offer u the results you seek... it's not ok to max out on deadlifts every day... heck even once a week it's not good, because you stress your body too much, also your CNS.

When you'll have all the weights and equipment try to incorporate some diversity... do different types of deadlifting (not only the conventional) like: Sumo, Romanian, stiff legged, rack deads (the partial version). Moreover add some cleans and presses, lots of bodyweight exercises, work on your core and stability (very important if u wanna improve for a sport, especially a rough one like rugby).

Take it slow! step by step... don't rush into things (it's not ok to stay aside for 2 months due to injury)


I usually just max out on deadlifts once a month but I do do them every 7-8 days doing 5x5. I've got both olympic barbell and dumbells so I can do at least 3 exercises for each muscle group I do (I do at least 3 different exercises for each muscle except for lower back where I only do deadlits).

As for core and other exercises, I do a lot of body weight squats, lunges, burpees and ab exercises about 2-3 times a week.

When I got sick, I got sick for 3 weeks and I didn't want to train cause I thought it'd get worse. As soon as I could breathe properly I hit the gym and a week of training, I got injured which took me out for 3-4 more weeks. As soon as I could though I started doing body weight training. Lots of push ups and pull ups. Only last month I started on lifting heavy again.

I'm not sure but I think I'll benefit more from doing deadlifts maybe every 2 weeks instead of 1. Or should I just stick to once a week doing 5x5 then by the month I lift max?