T Nation

Deadlift Form Help

Hi

Just would like some help and advice on my deadlift form I know it’s not up to scratch and was just wondering if anyone could help me identify what is lacking?

Thanks

Lol a video would help, unless you just want us to guess what’s wrong.

Pull harder.

Sorry I thought I’d entered a link in the initial post

Shoulders look as though they’re a bit too far in front of the bar, but it might just be the camera angle.

[quote]kgildner wrote:
Shoulders look as though they’re a bit too far in front of the bar, but it might just be the camera angle.[/quote]

Agreed. Also your hips are rising fast right off the rip, maybe you arent driving thru the heals as well as you could be. Really work on getting a tighter body position. Here Mike T. and Mark Bell go over some basic deadlift tips that i think would help.

Pull back more. Keep your lats tighter.

Hey man, I’ve seen way way worse pulls, you’re doing fine and good on your for asking for help.__

first, you’ve got pretty long legs and fairly short arms. What this means is that your hips will raise a bit before you break the floor due to your scapulae having to line up with the bar, it’s fine and just about everyone I know with your proportions pulls that way conventional.

From your breaks between reps, you’ve got some pretty good pelvic tilt going, ie tight hips. Your shoulders look fairly rolled back, but I think that’s more just the way you’re standing between sets as you’re still tense and I feel they’re most likely pulled forward as well. This is most likely the main culprit as to why you’re back tightness is giving way and you’re rounding. Defranco’s agile 8 works very well, youtube it, as well as the neanderthal no more series on here by Mike Robertson and Eric Cressey.

As for your back, It looks like you’re doing your best to arch hard, but it looks pretty tough, I’d say your hamstrings are also tight, do you have a deskjob? student? loosen those up and you’ll be able to arch more. Speaking of your back, I’d stop arching. Try more of a neutral spine approach, once again, google it. but just keep your back flat and then tight as hell.

Also, something I feel could really help build your form is deadlifting to the knees… yes you just go to your knees, it really teaches you to drive with your legs and you learn to keep a tight back. Use 70-75% of your 1rm and do it for doubles or triples for 4-5 sets.

Also, keep getting vids of your form, that will help you a ton.

First, don’t look anywhere but straight ahead when you’re lifting. I wish they would get rid of those damn mirrors, more harm than good. Your problems all start with a poor set up which is propagated by weak hamstrings and glutes and your back is taking over to compensate. But instead of putting your back in a advantageous position, you’re turning it into a rounded back straight leg deadlift.

You get tight when you start to descend, but as soon as you get to the bar you become really slack and never regain the arch you had previously. After you grip the bar, you need to be pulling the slack out of the bar, and leveraging back, push your hips back. This will do a couple things, it will tighten your back back up, it’ll also get your shoulders back so you’re not so far over the bar, finally you’ll be in a better position so other large muscle groups such as glutes and hamstrings can actually assist in the movement.

You look like your taking air once you grip the bar, I think it’s better to take air at the top before descending to the bar and set up more quickly. When you take air in when all compact like in the bottom of a deadlift, it’s harder to get a big belly, and all you end up doing is breathing into your chest instead of stomach. Air in the belly will keep your back tighter and help to prevent rounding, which I’m seeing in your video.

Why aren’t you wearing a belt, that would tell you right away if you’re breathing properly. I don’t understand why I see all these form check videos on squat and deadlift without a belt. We are allowed to use a belt in competition, so here’s a hint, get one and utilize it.

Next work on keeping your hips down, your legs are pretty much locked out before you even break the bar from the floor. The weight will feel heavier and slower at first, but that’s because your not used to it and your hamstrings are weak. Keeping your hips down and letting everything work together (instead of legs locking out then back, which is what you’re doing in the video), will also let your ass actually assist in locking the weight out.

When your legs are already locked out, it’s all back on lockout. What should be happening is after the bar breaks your knees, you should be jamming your hips through the bar and squeezing your ass as hard as you can.

Thank you for all the help and advice it’s much appreciated,
When in the bottom position of the deadlift I find it hard to sit back into it as the poster above is suggesting would this be down to my hamstrings bring tight as well as weak or is there another culprit?

The main cuprit would just be your proportions and arm length. Your scapulae needs to line up with the bar before it can leave the floor, hencce your rising hips. if you sit back too much the bar will line up with your shoulders instead of scapulae and you won’t get the bar off the floor.

Mark Rippetoe has some excellent deadlift stuff where he actually gets into the “why this is happening” of pulling.

Don’t worry about the belt, it’s not neccesarry and will just accentuate your problems by allowing you to use a heavier weight.

The biggest fix to your problem would be to pull to the knees, this will tighten up your form more than you can believe.

Cheers mate, il implement that into my program, would it be worth also pulling from blocks or the rack after such as in a sheiko type session?

[quote]Larry10 wrote:
The main cuprit would just be your proportions and arm length. Your scapulae needs to line up with the bar before it can leave the floor, hencce your rising hips. if you sit back too much the bar will line up with your shoulders instead of scapulae and you won’t get the bar off the floor.

Mark Rippetoe has some excellent deadlift stuff where he actually gets into the “why this is happening” of pulling.

Don’t worry about the belt, it’s not neccesarry and will just accentuate your problems by allowing you to use a heavier weight.

The biggest fix to your problem would be to pull to the knees, this will tighten up your form more than you can believe.[/quote]

Proportions or not, the form needs a lot of work. The OP isn’t sitting back, he’s sitting down ( takes in air, starts to create tension only in his arms as opposed to the rest of his body, then immediately raises his hips, then rounds over at the back since he’s already lost tightness there and the path of least resistance is to bend at the loose mid-back as opposed to the high hips or locked out legs). I attached a picture to show you how far over the bar you are right before the weight breaks the floor. If you sat back some and pulled the slack out of the bar, your back would be arched instead of rounded and you would be in a better pulling position. Sitting back too much will cause problems but being so far over the bar is gonna cause just as many problems. It think you should work on setting up by pulling the slack out of the bar, and creating tension as you leverage back. Like the video that was posted states, you should fall on your ass if you didn’t have the bar to counter-balance you. If you start pulling the slack out of the bar properly, lighter weight will break the floor sometimes by surprise.

Why would the belt not help? It teaches people to breath into their stomach and not their chest. It would also reinforce keeping his back tighter so you wouldn’t get the rounding that we’re seeing in the video. I really don’t get what’s with everyone being against belt use. This is powerlifting, you’re allowed to use a belt so use it, you don’t get more whites or a little gold star for doing any of the lifts without a belt. There’s an easy solution to avoid “accentuating [his] problems” with using heavier weight and that’s not to use heavier weight, instead of not using a belt.

[quote]Brads91 wrote:
Cheers mate, il implement that into my program, would it be worth also pulling from blocks or the rack after such as in a sheiko type session? [/quote]

Definitely. But I would just do the sheiko program as written, start with #29 and the first 3 weeks you only pull to the knees and from the blocks, this will help build your form big time.

Don’t forget the mobility and upper back work.

[quote]UAphenix wrote:

Proportions or not, the form needs a lot of work. The OP isn’t sitting back, he’s sitting down ( takes in air, starts to create tension only in his arms as opposed to the rest of his body, then immediately raises his hips, then rounds over at the back since he’s already lost tightness there and the path of least resistance is to bend at the loose mid-back as opposed to the high hips or locked out legs). I attached a picture to show you how far over the bar you are right before the weight breaks the floor. If you sat back some and pulled the slack out of the bar, your back would be arched instead of rounded and you would be in a better pulling position. Sitting back too much will cause problems but being so far over the bar is gonna cause just as many problems. It think you should work on setting up by pulling the slack out of the bar, and creating tension as you leverage back. Like the video that was posted states, you should fall on your ass if you didn’t have the bar to counter-balance you. If you start pulling the slack out of the bar properly, lighter weight will break the floor sometimes by surprise.

Why would the belt not help? It teaches people to breath into their stomach and not their chest. It would also reinforce keeping his back tighter so you wouldn’t get the rounding that we’re seeing in the video. I really don’t get what’s with everyone being against belt use. This is powerlifting, you’re allowed to use a belt so use it, you don’t get more whites or a little gold star for doing any of the lifts without a belt. There’s an easy solution to avoid “accentuating [his] problems” with using heavier weight and that’s not to use heavier weight, instead of not using a belt.
[/quote]

I said the belt was not necessary, and it isn’t, not that it didn’t help. yeah it’s allowed in competition, but so is lifting with no gear in a multi ply meet. Notice I also gave him a recomendation of pulling 80% to his knees, ie lighter weight.

Thanks for attaching the picture, it actually perfectly illustrates my point of why his hips are so high before the bar really breaks from the floor. If he had longer arms he could sit back like you keep recomending, but it’s just not going to happen that way in real life. The bar will not leave the floor until your scapulae lines up with it, end of discussion. I get it, Dave Tate has written about keeping the shoulders behing the bar a ton, but did you catch where he recently said that it’s a guideline and a cue and that you can’t actually do it?
Watch this and learn something.

You keep talking about pulling the slack out of the bar, first, maybe explain to the poor kid what the hell you’re talking about, do you even know? I’m assuming you mean from the start position to get really really tight… Did you watch the video? the kid is tight, do you think he’s casually taking a heavy triple? Or are you talking about pulling the whip out of a deadlift bar that he isn’t using? He’s losing his back because he’s trying to apply tension and can’t get the bar to break, so he’s searching for where to pull from, and instinctively goes to the proper position, but because he’s trying to start the way you’re recomending he’s losing his back. It’s not a lack of tightness or big air, it’s a lack of knowing his form.

And that advice about taking a breath at the top is for someone who pulls in a suit and can’t get a deep breath at the bottom because of their suit.

I get your trying to help, so try not to take offense, even though I know you will, hopefully you learned something from this.

I appreciate both of your help, i think i will use both of your advice i.e stretching, hip mobility etc and really focus on strengthening my glutes and hamstrings as well as adding some knee pulls and rack deads. One last thing to larry10 i would have asked this in pm but dont seem able to send those yet. i am currently following 531, and as you said to follow some sheiko deadlifting would this be able to make up my deadlift day rather than doing the 531? i know picking and choosing from different progeammes isnt ideal which is why i thouht id ask? once again thank you all for your help.

  1. bar is too close to your shins
  2. mid/upper back looks weak
  3. not staying very tight/keeping your arch
  4. not pulling the bar back with your lats
  5. most important - your shoulders are wayyy out in front of the bar. Try sitting back and down to get into position instead of straight down with your knees so far forward. Put more tension on your hammies and heels. I like to get down into position, set the bar, etc. and then gt my pulling setup like Kirk K. Watch his videos. I’ll set where I want the bar in relation to my shin (Rippetoe advice); drop back and down into a squat; raise up until I feel pressure on my hams and then pull.

[quote]Brads91 wrote:
I appreciate both of your help, i think i will use both of your advice i.e stretching, hip mobility etc and really focus on strengthening my glutes and hamstrings as well as adding some knee pulls and rack deads. One last thing to larry10 i would have asked this in pm but dont seem able to send those yet. i am currently following 531, and as you said to follow some sheiko deadlifting would this be able to make up my deadlift day rather than doing the 531? i know picking and choosing from different progeammes isnt ideal which is why i thouht id ask? once again thank you all for your help. [/quote]

It’s not ideal, but it might be worth it to run program #29, then #37, then go back to 531… I’ve taken out just the bench portion of sheiko and run it, so why not?

The weights may seem light at first, but the overall volume will catch up to you.

[quote]Larry10 wrote:
I get it, Dave Tate has written about keeping the shoulders behing the bar a ton, but did you catch where he recently said that it’s a guideline and a cue and that you can’t actually do it?[/quote]

No, how about you show us where he said that. Cite your sources asshat.

[quote]black_angus1 wrote:

[quote]Larry10 wrote:
I get it, Dave Tate has written about keeping the shoulders behing the bar a ton, but did you catch where he recently said that it’s a guideline and a cue and that you can’t actually do it?[/quote]

No, how about you show us where he said that. Cite your sources asshat.
[/quote]

I’ll actually take a look for it, I wouldn’t mind another look myself… also, chill Kiddo. lol.

edit, I facebooked Dave and he says it’s guideline, it’s right on his wall. So go check it asshat.