T Nation

Deadlifting Eccentric Phase


Ok so I have a problem here.
I lift in a commercial gym, and when deadlifting the employees there get pissed, because of the noise when I put the bar back to the floor. They tell me if I don't have a very good reason to not lower the bar gently without noises, I have to do so or I get banned. I don't drop it to the floor though, but hold back maybe like 50 kgs of the weight. but thats not good enough for them.

So my question is; how is lowering the bar gently under full control going to affect my deadlifting? I don't see anyone doing this really, and I don't have a good answer when they ask why I'm not doing it.


It depends on how much you are deadlifting. If you are DLing 300 or less, probably wont affect you much. The eccentric portion of the DL is what causes the most soreness, aches and pains. So what it means is you will have to wacth soreness and may not be able to deadlift as heavy for as many reps in one workout, or maybe cut down frequency depending on how often you pull.

Honestly though, just find a new gym if there's one in the area. Theyre being fucking retarded unless you're dropping it from a standing position.


I doubt it's gonna be a negative to be in control, but from the sounds of it, my guess is that they are gonna have a problem and be difficult no matter how quietly you lift. I'd go elsewhere if at all possible, and be loud about why, preferably to the corporate types, like via their website.

I think that very often those of us that are normal reasonable folks don't get heard because the squeaky wheel, those that get the grease, is made up of fitness douches, I for one will try to be abusively loud on a corporate level if this kind of thing impedes on my ability to get my deadlift on, and I hope everyone else is likewise. Best luck.


Im deadlifting more like 350 pounds now, and putting the bar down silent kinda ruins the joy of lifting. They adviced me to put the bar on my shoulders instead haha. I guess I'll have to change gym or focus on squatting and romanian deadlifts instead.


I have a business and training mentor who has a second floor clinic (so thin, noisy floors). He reckons he put of fair bit of weight on his deadlift, not to mention a strong midsection, by not being able to drop his pulls. Bear in mind, he's not a powerlifter, but he managed 220kg with no belt at around 85kg bodyweight. Obviously it's not for everyone, and it'll probably slow you down a bit, but you can still make some progress.

Until you find a less shitty gym, that is.


Gyms like that are so fucking gay. I'd find a different one even if I had to drive way out of my way to work out.


I always lower my deadlifts under reasonable control, it might increase soreness a bit but it is also additional training stimulus, I see no big negative (no pun intended) in doing this. 2 things to help you (other than moving gyms) would be:

Perform gentle touch and go reps - I am guessing you are doing stop reps on each rep but instead try to just touch the ground gently and come right back up. Personally I think this is great for upper back musculature because of the constant tension. Think of it like a bench meaning the control on the negative is about the same.

Second thing, a practical solution is to put some stretching mats or yoga pads or even some towels under the bar. This greatly reduces the noise the weights make when they hit the floor, although it might damage/bend/dent the pad you put under the bar.


when I went to a shitty gym like that I used pads until it got to the point i was lifting enough that i still made noise. I used it as an excuse to run smolov while looking for a new gym.


As Tim Henriques said...try the towels or mats. i have and it does reduce the noise. Much of the sound also come from the plates hitting each other. You can try spacing them out a bit perhaps with a few collars.


You can't drop it in a meet. Don't start a bad habit. The is a big difference between under control and over exaggerating though. I couldn't imagine slowing down a deadlift to the point of it becoming an actual eccentric exercise. Deadlifts are stressful enough as is.

Anyway, the best solution to your problem is do some research and find another place to train.


Thank you for your replies. I watched a video of Benedict Magnusson deadlift, and noticed he did touch and go reps with 400 kgs. So I guess I could try doing them like this too.


Agreed. You should definitely try doing some 400kg touch-and-go deadlifts.

Personally, I'd quit your gym - it sounds ridiculous. Do they let you chalk?


What Tim said.

I always lower my reps with control - makes hardly a noise. Should not be a problem at all.


Man I'm not sure, I don't use chalk. And sometimes quitting isn't an option.


Man, I posted not long ago about how I train at a gym where guys do the opposite...they practically throw the weight down and I thought this was a bad habit to get into since you cant do that in competition. We have two solid lifting platforms with a shock absorption affect plus a full array of bumper plates which makes it very attractive to just drop the weight, just drop it at the top of your lock out, dont even try to guide it down. Guys just drop it. It kills me when I see old timers teching new guys to deadlift and they teach them right off the bat to drop the weight and hear the crash. Just drop the fuckin'thing. Wierd!


I probably wouldn't do this, but I really can't see it as a problem...regardless if you train the eccentric or not, there is no way that you won't be able to control the descent in any weight that you can actually pull up. As long as you are smart in the meet, or practice setting it down vs. dropping it in your few weeks before meet prep, then I see nothing wrong with just dropping it during your offseason/non-prep phase.


Some people drop it to make it a less stressful exercise, or because they want to get stronger without adding much muscle mass. The lowering part is also when you're most vulnerable for injuries from what I have heard, not sure how much it is to that.


Hmmm...since I have a vulnerable low back, and have injuries over the years, I may just give this a try. I can see the benefit of dropping the weight.



There is never a good reason to drop a deadlift. I have personally witnessed people who drop deads have difficulty lowering a weight they picked up because they always drop it. It's just an all around stupid practice.


I hate when people drop the weight, they look like morons. Have some control over the weight. Pretend like there are eggs hanging from the bar from a string with a half inch of slack and you don't want to break them. If you can't lower it, you can't lift it. Place it on the ground so gently that you can't hear it. That's more respectable than slamming it.