T Nation

Deadlift Scheme: High Rep vs. Low Rep


I just came off SS 5X5, warming up to 1 set of 5 reps for dead lift. Ive started doing higher rep sets and more isolation stuff. But Ive kept dead at 1 set for 5 reps on shoulder day. Last workout did 310X5. I havnt stalled yet. But I was wondering if anyone has some insight on higher rep sets of deadlifts, say in the 8-12 rep range, as far as overall growth etc. Or is lower reps, lift heavy as possible the way to go for the most part?

thanks in advance


ramp and wave. 1 week, work up to max 6/7, week 2 4/5, week 3 2/3


What do you mean 6/7, 4/5, and 2/3. Are those reps? or sets?


I'd say drop the reps down and do 6 or 7 sets of 3.

I've read that if you go high your form may become sloppy. I've thrown my back out a couple of times from being just a little sloppy.


im with Nards. except when i do 5/3/1. aside from that, i usually work up to a top set of 3.


Up to 10 reps can be good but not multiple weeks in a row, do like 10 then drop to 7-8 then next week and 5 the 3rd week, repeat with more weight. If you don't care about a 1RM then 3-5 is good for the low rep range so hit that about once a month and go slightly higher other weeks.


yes sorry, they were rep guidelines
yeah, basically do 5/3/1 od dan johns One Lift A Day,b oth have similar loading parametres.


For size I'd say keep the reps at five or above. Only one set though.

If you want a bigger DL however you'll want to keep the reps lower, like 1-3 with lots of speed work.


I have recently started working up in singles to where the weight slows down, then dropping to the previous weight and creeping back up in smaller increments till it slows again, and then going back down for a few singles with something I know I can dominate. Ususally I do like 5-8x1 of working weights.

Im really liking this because I can deadlift every week so far, but Ive been doing it for 3 weeks so I will report back when it backfires and I hit a wall. I came to this since after I got past 405 I would tear up a bunch of sets of 3 or 5 and be out of commission for a few weeks before I could do it again, and it wasnt as fun. I missed the frequency and I like this better so far.

I save the higher reps for back squats (which I now do after DLs). Deads I dont like going over 3 or 5, and this singles once a week thing is working for me so far.


so what do you guys think about if I keep doing my 1 set X 5 reps, adding weight each week, until I stall, then maybe switch to 5/3/1, or some similar strength method?


i would go nuts if i deadlifted so little each week


Form goes to crap with higher reps. I would keep the reps low on DLs, and rep the shit out of rack pulls for back size. The rack pulls won't help your DL numbers much, but it will put meat on you.


I wish I could do rack pulls. But the rack at my gym doesnt have pins.

Caveman, how many times a week do you deadlift and with what reps/weight? just curious.


You can do box deadlifts instead. It's basically the same thing except you elevate the plates using those step-up thingys, matts, other benches or anything else that would hold the weight:


Thanks WP, whats the benefit from doing rack pulls and modified deads like that. I know it allows you to use more weight, does that carry over to your full ROM dead? Or is the point just to have heavy shit in your hands for general overload to the whole system? I imagine some serious trap and grip work from this as well.


If you want to do high rep deadlifts use a trap bar. The deads with a trap bar are much more forgiving on form breakdown.


that's one ugly mofo. if he lost some weight he would be able to deadlift so much better.


the benefits really depend on the height of the elevation. IMO, if you are pulling from knee level or above it has absolutely ZERO carryover to the full ROM dead. it's basically just an ego lift at that point. now, if you are pulling from midshin you will notice that you will actually be lifting less than your full ROM dead. the reason for this is because most people are weak at midshin because that's a transition point in the deadlift. without the speed off the floor to get you through that transition point, your numbers will be much lower. as a result, that is exactly where one should pull from if they want to pull from an elevation. without that speed you will really need to learn to strain to get the bar moving from that point.


IMO, trap bar deads aren't even really deads. they are more of a squat. the two movements are completely different.


Discovered exactly this tonight deadlifting off 4" blocks. Expected to go over my 1 rep max off the floor (484) and didn't get close, managed 3 reps with 451. I'm glad I read this I feel better now. Thanks.