T Nation

Deadlifting - Shoulder Posture

 I'm starting to feel that itch again to Dead Lift.  I haven't DL'd in about 4-5 years(had some injuries).

I DL’d the other day with only 225 to check on my posture and form. My heels were tucked, hips high, chest up and I drove through the ground as I pulled. The only thing that I did notice as my sets progressed was the rounding of my shoulders. It didn’t seem to be “folding my spine in half” rounding, but more of a “I can’t keep my scapula retracted” rounding.

Is this something that naturally occurs in the lift or will this get better as I begin to dead lift more often? Does this point to obvious weak spots that should be correct, or will these weak spots “catch” up as I dead lift more often?

Thanks for any advice.

It for sure will get better but you should also Fix it with direct work things like Face pulls. Use a safety squat bar it really try to flatten you round your upper back etc Even some trap work ownt hurt. Oh and band pull aparts.

Phill

[quote]Sykotik wrote:
I’m starting to feel that itch again to Dead Lift. I haven’t DL’d in about 4-5 years(had some injuries).

I DL’d the other day with only 225 to check on my posture and form. My heels were tucked, hips high, chest up and I drove through the ground as I pulled. The only thing that I did notice as my sets progressed was the rounding of my shoulders. It didn’t seem to be “folding my spine in half” rounding, but more of a “I can’t keep my scapula retracted” rounding.

Is this something that naturally occurs in the lift or will this get better as I begin to dead lift more often? Does this point to obvious weak spots that should be correct, or will these weak spots “catch” up as I dead lift more often?

Thanks for any advice.[/quote]

Do lots and lots of band pull-downs as activation work, this will help you keep your shoulders down and back when DL’ing. Face pulls are also amazing, do lots of them. With those two movements you should be seeing much better form in like 3 weeks to a month. I’ve also done quite a bit of overhead shrugging and scap raises on the incline bench, as my traps were shut down pretty badly. i think these articles can help:

http://www.T-Nation.com/findArticle.do?article=07-069-training

http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=1426252

and

http://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/SerratusAnterior/BBInclineShoulderRaise.html

Thanks for the replies guys,

Both of you mentioned band pull-a-parts so I need to run out and pick some bands up.

I don’t want to create an entire new thread but I’d like to follow up with a question about the Romanian dead lift and hamstring activation.

I did Romanian dead lifts today(10x3) and ended up only getting a good stretch on every 1-2 reps per set. I’m keeping my chest up, not lowering the weight but extending my butt away from my posture and varying my legs between straight and a slight bend(attempting to figure out how to maximize activation).

I can’t seem to find what I’m doing wrong. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks again.

Sounds like your onto it just keep up the practice youll nail it. this was your first time. concentrate on using your ass and hams to move the load up drive hips forward and then same on down motion ass back

Phill

[quote]Sykotik wrote:
Thanks for the replies guys,

Both of you mentioned band pull-a-parts so I need to run out and pick some bands up.

I don’t want to create an entire new thread but I’d like to follow up with a question about the Romanian dead lift and hamstring activation.

I did Romanian dead lifts today(10x3) and ended up only getting a good stretch on every 1-2 reps per set. I’m keeping my chest up, not lowering the weight but extending my butt away from my posture and varying my legs between straight and a slight bend(attempting to figure out how to maximize activation).

I can’t seem to find what I’m doing wrong. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks again.[/quote]

You got some solid advice on your first question but it is somewhat natural for the shoulders to round some as the weight gets heavier. Matter of fact, if you look at all the 900-1000 lbs dl’rs you’ll see they do it.

It actually gives you a little advatage and somewhere on EliteFTS someone wrote about it. You obviously want your upper back and shoulders to be strong as possible but if you really start to push the limit you aren’t going to keep those shoulders “back and tight”.

[quote]Sykotik wrote:
Thanks for the replies guys,

Both of you mentioned band pull-a-parts so I need to run out and pick some bands up.

I don’t want to create an entire new thread but I’d like to follow up with a question about the Romanian dead lift and hamstring activation.

I did Romanian dead lifts today(10x3) and ended up only getting a good stretch on every 1-2 reps per set. I’m keeping my chest up, not lowering the weight but extending my butt away from my posture and varying my legs between straight and a slight bend(attempting to figure out how to maximize activation).

I can’t seem to find what I’m doing wrong. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks again.[/quote]

Try backing the weight off, go light until you can feel the glute/hams. If you aren’t used to the movement you might be relying on your back too much.

Also try some light GM’s, and really push your hips back. This may help you get the ‘feel’ in the hammies. Once you get it, you may be able to translate it to the RDL’s.

[quote]roofus_5 wrote:
You got some solid advice on your first question but it is somewhat natural for the shoulders to round some as the weight gets heavier. Matter of fact, if you look at all the 900-1000 lbs dl’rs you’ll see they do it.

It actually gives you a little advatage and somewhere on EliteFTS someone wrote about it. You obviously want your upper back and shoulders to be strong as possible but if you really start to push the limit you aren’t going to keep those shoulders “back and tight”.[/quote]
I was quietly thinking this in my head while I read everyone’s response. “Damn, those guys are able to scap retract that much weight”.

I picked up some bands tonight at the local Sporting Goods store. I’ll start some band pull-a-parts(I’m assuming this is the behind the neck variant, and not the face-pullish variant) in the following weeks.

Thanks for the advice.