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Deadlift Sumo vs. Conv. vs. Sport.

Hey guys well been lifting for a while…everything is good but no matter what i’ve done…my back rounds on the deadlift. But for sumo I’m all good (modified sumo…shins touching rings on texas power bar).

So my thing is…when I do stiff leg deads my back is alright, if I do sumo deads my back is alright, rack pulls my back is alright…but as soon as I deadlift from the floor my back rounds way too much…and although i’ve done 500 with a rounded back and feel fine I just really rather NOT get injured this way.

So I think I’ve decided switching fully to sumo…and after the sumo deads concentrate on either rack pulls or stiff legs to make the low back strong and in check.

What do you all think?

As for pertaining to sport (boxing and muay thai) what do you feel the difference in benefits are comparing the conv. vs the sumo for a sport like muay thai…with lots of kicking involved.

Thanks!

video would help, where is it rounding? low mid upper? could be flexibility. sumo will train your hips more and low back and conventional will hit the whole leg, and upper back more as well as low back. I think both are good for sports as most sports need strong hips and backs, i would say both

In terms of rounding being dangerous, I really think upper back rounding is fine. Lower back rounding causes a lot of compressive force and is much more likely to lead to injury.

I used to have TERRIBLE issues with keeping a neutral lower back on the deadlift. Even at like 50% of my 1RM I would have significant rounding. My problem was poor abdominal stabilization of the spine (and also a shitty setup). You’re a strong guy, so I figure you’re probably doing “abdominal bracing” but if not, that’s the place to start. Lots of spine stabilization abdominal movements are what helped me the most - weighted planks, rollouts, pallof press isometric holds, etc. I also had some anterior pelvic tilt issues, so exercises like dead bugs were really helpful. If you want to read more about this stuff, read Mike Robertson and Eric Cressey’s articles.

It sounds like you feel like your lower back is the weak link. From what I’ve seen, most guys who lift with a rounded back have very strong lower backs. After all, your spinal erectors are doing a lot of fucking work to extend your spine from that rounded position to a fully extended one.

If you could post a video then it would be easier to assess what your issue is and how to fix it.

In terms of sports, I don’t necisarily think one is superior to the other. They’re similar in a lot of regards (hip extension with lots of spinal and scapular stabilization), and different in a few (sumo deads will recruit your adductors more), but they’re both very good lifts. If you can only pull sumo, I doubt it would make too much of a difference.

Awesome replies guys…I will make a video for you tonight! Even though I am not supposed to lift I will make one cause I have access to camera…I think I do have anterior pelvic tilt as well…I KNOW my hips are tight, nonetheless very strong…but tight for sure.

The ROM between my sumo and conv. isn’t too much of a difference…maybe a couple inches because I do not go very wide at all with my feet…at the rings or before rings…but the movement feels a hell of a lot safer then with conv. deads.

Anyways I’m gonna grab a bite, wait an hour…and do a few pulls and we’ll go from there.

Thanks again

Alright got a video! This was after boxig conditioning workout…but nonetheless this is how my deadlift ALWAYS looks…even at a weight that is not very heavy…I was workin on my form with this 365 and it’s just not there…of course I can still pull weight…but the rounding gets a bit more pronounced…but still have the strength always to pull through
I try to lift it slower with the weight to focus on form because the faster I accerlate as well…the form goes even more shitty.

Like I said before I do not have a problem like this with sumo…and with SLDL’s I do it on a couple plates elevated 315…straight leg 10 reps it’s all good.

I’m thinking it’s better if I stick to sumo…I can lift more, I feel a hell of a lot safer and can still get good lower back work from SLDL’s, back extensions, and I’m sure the a
Any other recommendations for the lower back?
Maybe even straight sets with 5x5 on conv. deadlift…because I’m not using as heavy of weight, I’m still getting a good lower back workout in.
Thoughts?

and here’s the vid

As far as your original question about training for kicking sports goes, I would be very careful about doing too much sumo deadlifting from simply a mobility standpoint. Keep an eye on your hip ROM in internal rotation - sumo deadlifting will eat that up quick if you don’t work on it regularly.

Benway - how do you feel anterior peliv tilt can affect the deadlift?

challer1 - how would I fix hip internal rotation…I saw some exercises on youtube of people having their knee’s together and pushing their legs outward…would you recommend that?
I do mobility 3x a week for hips (leg swings, back front side, duck under hurdles…but I’m guessing that would all be external…
Do you have any suggestions for me? It’d be greatly appreciated!

here’s another video here - not from tonight - but from another time workin on form with 385…bleh lol

Your back isnt horribly rounded, its not perfect, but I dont think your in any danger of getting hurt.

Your form looks 99% perfect to me. Your lower back does round slightly but nothing that can’t be fixed by looking up a bit more. You’re looking slightly downward which can cause rounding.

Other than that I’d say you’re good to go dude. Nice lifts.

really…hmmm…i know 385 isnt that heavy of a weight I am workin on form…but I mean maybe i should give a video of something close to a max…or even 85%…the rounding gets MUCH more pronounced…and although it doesn’t hurt me and I can pretty much pull through anything…I’m just wondering if eventually the time will come when I deadlift…lift heavy 85-90% and pop goes the weasel…which would be horrible none-the-less.
thoughts?

[quote]rasturai wrote:
Benway - how do you feel anterior peliv tilt can affect the deadlift?

challer1 - how would I fix hip internal rotation…I saw some exercises on youtube of people having their knee’s together and pushing their legs outward…would you recommend that?
I do mobility 3x a week for hips (leg swings, back front side, duck under hurdles…but I’m guessing that would all be external…
Do you have any suggestions for me? It’d be greatly appreciated![/quote]

The knees together one can be good, but the major downside to it is you put a lot of stress on your MCL/other medial knee structures. Some people’s knees (mine included) do not do well with that drill. I’m guessing that as a fighter this could be an issue for you as well.

If this is an issue for you, you could lay on your stomach, and have a training partner stretch your hip in internal ROM by turning at the thigh, which would reduce stress on the knee.

Another thing you should do is as you already mentioned, do some regular deadlifting or at least rack pulls with your feet pointed directly forward.

Some other ideas - do your same typical hip mobility drills but actively try to hold your hips in internal rotation. You won’t be able to bring your hip as high but at least you will work your hip in IR range of motion that way. Other things I like to do for that are hip distraction exercises with rotation and controlled, slow hip circles with the hip internally rotated (a la z-health).

[quote]rasturai wrote:
Benway - how do you feel anterior peliv tilt can affect the deadlift?
[/quote]

I think it’s not the anterior tilt itself that’s affecting your deadlift. However, the reason most people have an anterior pelvic tilt posture is because they have really tight hip flexors and weak abdominals, causing the pelvis to be “pulled down” in the front, and strong spinal erectors and weak gluteals causing the pelvis to be “pulled up” in the back - the end result being the anterior tilt posture. I think a lot of this has to do with the amount of time people spend sitting, their seated posture, how they reinforce this posture in the gym, etc. I feel like it’s moreso the “parts” of anterior pelvic tilt (eg. strong erectors, weak glutes and abdominals) that cause your deadlift to look the way it does.

After watching the video, it looked like your lockout was fairly smooth, and didn’t seem like that much of an issue, so I’m guessing glute strength isn’t a huge issue. I’m curious how your abdominal strength is. Have you ever done things like rollouts and weighted planks?

[quote]rasturai wrote:
Hey guys well been lifting for a while…everything is good but no matter what i’ve done…my back rounds on the deadlift. But for sumo I’m all good (modified sumo…shins touching rings on texas power bar).

So my thing is…when I do stiff leg deads my back is alright, if I do sumo deads my back is alright, rack pulls my back is alright…but as soon as I deadlift from the floor my back rounds way too much…and although i’ve done 500 with a rounded back and feel fine I just really rather NOT get injured this way.

So I think I’ve decided switching fully to sumo…and after the sumo deads concentrate on either rack pulls or stiff legs to make the low back strong and in check.

What do you all think?

As for pertaining to sport (boxing and muay thai) what do you feel the difference in benefits are comparing the conv. vs the sumo for a sport like muay thai…with lots of kicking involved.

Thanks![/quote]

When it comes to dead lifting it is always better to include a variety of DL’s in your training. It’s okay if you want to concentrate on one in particular, but keep throwing in conventional,rack pulls,SLDL’s. As well as including other PC exercises like GM’s,GHR’s,pullthroughs,etc…

Btw, your back isn’t that bad in the vids. If anything the hips pop up a bit quick. Keep working at it. Good luck.

Yeah I think my glutes are good to go, I do glute activation as well and when I squat my glutes get sore…I am definately shifting always more toward glutes in training cause it helps in sport and in vertical jump.

My ab strength…if you mean ab rollouts I’ve done those before with weight on my back…I can actually do them standing as well…but I haven’t practiced them in a while. I also do strict hanging leg raises…with the back reinforced so there’s no cheating.
I just think my hips are really tight from the time not stretching them at all, I know my quads as well are very tight…when I go to do a quad stretch I don’t even have to pull the leg that hard to get a stretch it comes instant.

[quote]rasturai wrote:
Benway - how do you feel anterior peliv tilt can affect the deadlift?

challer1 - how would I fix hip internal rotation…I saw some exercises on youtube of people having their knee’s together and pushing their legs outward…would you recommend that?
I do mobility 3x a week for hips (leg swings, back front side, duck under hurdles…but I’m guessing that would all be external…
Do you have any suggestions for me? It’d be greatly appreciated![/quote]

I could try to answer your question regarding hip internal rotation. The external rotators are the ones that rotate your femur bone outward, the internal ones do the opposite. The youtube exercise you are referring to are for strengthening the external rotators.

challer1 is referring to internal rotation mobility, or to rephrase it, external rotator flexibility.

What happens with sumo DLs (which incidentally happened to me) is that your hips (or more precisely, your femur bones) are locked externally rotated.

Over time, your external rotators shorten and become inflexible (and your internal rotators typically but not always lengthen and become weaker.) In my case, not only my external rotators got inflexible, but the right one got more inflexible than the left one. That put tremendous pressure on my back when squatting, finally getting several L disks herniated when grappling.

So, if you are doing kicking sports (or anything that requires a lot of hip mobility), you would do well in stretching the external rotators. The stretching movements that you want are opposite to the youtube exercise you were referring to.

The way I stretch mine (which I have to every single day since I screwed up my back) is like the one on the link (with the dude laying down), but with both knees being brought together simultaneously. My wife assists me by pushing the knees together.

It helps to keep your heels touching the floor and nothing else of your feet. If you try to keep your feet planted on the floor when doing the stretch, that will put a lot of stress on the knees.

The other thing you want to check is that if you are using a mixed grip when dead lifting, to remember to switch hands on every set (to avoid developing hip and torso imbalances.)

As for the vid, good lifts. Your back rounds up but just a little. If there is any rounding on the lower back, it’s very negligible. It will help if you really look up and by lowering your but a bit just before doing the pull if you still feel concerned about rounding up.

There is this strongman dude from Russia (his name escapes me) and he rounds his upper body (from shoulder blades up) noticeable when doing a dead lift. Some people pull better like that so go figures.

Elnyka, are you referring to Konstantin Konstantinovs? He has a lot of upper back rounding in his pulls. I believe he’s actually Latvian.

And since you were mentioning your poor mobility and flexibility, upper back rounding might actually help because it would allow you to set up higher. It looks like you’re rounded even from the start of the pull, so having that higher starting position might help.

Stretching your quads might also help you to make the lift a little bit more hip dominant. I used to deadlift largely with my quads - my setup was such that I started with my hips really low and the bar several inches from my shins, and it contributed significantly to rounding.

People are throwing a lot of complicated explanations around in here, often a simple answer is a good one.

Let us look at your setup and the important details.
With what do we grip the bar? The hands, these are mounted to the arms, that are mounted at the shoulders. When you begin pulling your shoulders - the place, from where you put power into the bar - are behind the bar, and the bar does not move. You extend your knees, and this causes your shoulders to travel horisontally till they are vertically on top of the bar. When they are, you can pull it.

What does this teach us? You waste energy getting into the right position, and you get your hips very high.
The start of the deadlift should include hip extention, not flexion.

Statement - start your lifter with shoulders vertically on top of the bar.

Fix this, and your form will improve by a whole lot.

I’ve had exactly the same problem.

[quote]elnyka wrote:
rasturai wrote:
Benway - how do you feel anterior peliv tilt can affect the deadlift?

challer1 - how would I fix hip internal rotation…I saw some exercises on youtube of people having their knee’s together and pushing their legs outward…would you recommend that?
I do mobility 3x a week for hips (leg swings, back front side, duck under hurdles…but I’m guessing that would all be external…
Do you have any suggestions for me? It’d be greatly appreciated!

I could try to answer your question regarding hip internal rotation. The external rotators are the ones that rotate your femur bone outward, the internal ones do the opposite. The youtube exercise you are referring to are for strengthening the external rotators.

challer1 is referring to internal rotation mobility, or to rephrase it, external rotator flexibility.

[/quote]

Err, that’s actually not what I was thinking about. I wouldn’t really consider the 2 interchangeable since a lot of the adaptations that limit mobility that occur with sumo deadlifting occur at the capsule rather than the external rotators.

Plus with the more flared stances you get adductor magnus as a primary hip extensor, it just makes the whole movement weird when it comes to athletic carryover.