T Nation

Deadlift Form/Grip


When I'm doing deads, in the middle of the second set and then in the third set, the bar seems to slip from a solid grasp to one where I'm taking a lot of the weight in my fingers (if this makes sense). I then feel it along my forearms -- it feels like a hammer curl.

Is this a normal part of working up to heavier loads, or does it mean I have too much weight? I know form is important, but i'm trying to figure out the balance between maintaining proper form and increasing loads.


Its normal. As long as the bar doesn't come out of your hands your good to go.


^ thx. good to know.


Use enough chalk, and get it between your thumb and forefinger. I hate that feeling of the bar slipping out of my palm and into my fingers, makes the rep feel weak.


How many reps are you doing? Quite honestly, I've never had my grip fail on DL. But I don't pull much in the way of reps with this lift.


^^^ My grip never fails on deadlift either... Mind you, I only deadlift 385.

years ago this used to happen sometimes, but now my grip seems to be much stronger.

I would suggest making a point of really squeezing the bar hard and trying NOT to let it slide down to your fingers. With practise and time this alone will help your grip.


hahahaha... nothing like spazzing on your keyboard to get your point across.

Sorry about the reposts OP.


No problem! Appreciate the advice. It's not so much that my grip fails, as it is SHIFTS to my fingers, which, in addition to making dropping the bar more possible than if I had a firm whole-hand grip, seems to really refocus the stress of the exercise to my forearms. I'll try squeezing tighter -- it's just hard to keep so many things in mind, which you have to do to do deads correctly. At least my form is good (no back pain, etc.).


Thx. 12 reps at 125 per. Doesn't seem like much in the T-Nation context, but it's a lot for me.


Are you using a mixed grip when you deadlift?


No -- and I should clarify that these are snatch deads. I could lift more with a closer hand placement...and maybe that explains some of the slippage -- the snatch grip is simply more unstable in terms of torque alignment with your body. I didn't think about that...



this is great; thanks. will try it tomorrow!


Re using a hook grip - I've tried it and it does work, but be prepared for your thumbs to really hurt when you're starting out. Be persistent and the pain goes away over time. In the meantime, it helps to wrap a bit of athletic tape around each thumb.


Ah-ha! It makes more sense now. For snatch deads, hook grip probably is the answer your looking for.


it does hurt like a bitch tho.
Don't be scared of using straps for snatch grip either. I use SGDL as an accessory for DL, so by the time I get to them, I need straps because my grip is fried.


When I was focusing on bettering my deads, I found barbell farmer's walks and heavy rack pulls with a long hold at the top really brought my grip strength up in a hurry. Pretty quickly it became my posterior chain rather than my grip strength that became the limiter of my deadlifting. Try a day of interval farmer's walks for both grip training and to really get your heart thumping and your lungs working - it is great conditioning work.


12 reps IS a lot...

Someday I'll get there, yeah, someday...


Lots of good posts here.

I look at grip as another part of the chain. If it is the weak link, then it needs more work. Fortunately, grip strength is fairly easy to develop. I think farmers walks and heavy dumbbell rows (Krock Rows) do a bang-up job in developing grip. So does just deadlifting for reps. Grip used to be my weak link, but it hasn't been in quite sometime.

Also, chalk is your friend. Chalk will probably stop the sliding right off the bat while your grip strength improves.


Oh, and, it looks like you are new here. Welcome. You should consider posting a log. You will get a lot of good feedback.