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Deadlifting with Short Arms


So I am very frustrated, I watch deadlift vid after vid, pulled bare foot, olympic shoes etc.....i'm a conventional puller and can't seem to budge my deadlift. My best full gear 535(grinded)...squat 640....best pull in comp is 500.....so I am giving up some pounds on my total!

Basicly the bar is above ball sack when I lock out! lol For the intrested 6ft( none squat days) 28in inseam, so I have kinda a long torso and 37in quads( big speed bump)....and stumpy short arms. So short I actually switched to double overhand grip( hook)....I also can't descide on a set up, bar in front roll back and rip, bar in middle of foot etc I know this is an issue cause I have pulled 650 on the hex bar full gear....

Anyone have an issue like this and have any insight?

thanks all in advance


Have you thought about sumo? Worked a lot better for me and I too have t-rex arms.


I have, problem is I have zero hip strength....and I just have no drive out of the hole. It is much easier for me...once I hit 400 or so pounds it becomes a stiff legged sumo pull. As quad dominate as I am me and my coach agree i'm a conventional puller lol its scary watching me do sumo


You must be an awesome bencher :slight_smile: I just spent yesterday reffing a meet where we saw a ton of ball sacks hanging over bars.

I wouldn't give up on sumo. Develop better hip and adductor strength. I'm faster off the floor conventional raw but sumo in gear. For me, gear gives you that pop off the floor that gets you moving. For most lifters sumor requires a lot of work and technical ability.


yeah I can bench more than I pull:( Best bench 510 on a 4th attempt. Sumo feels so unnatural and last I tried it seriously I started having Lt band issues?


Hmm....sounds like its time to get some fucking hip strength.

Get hip strength -> sumo stance/reducing distance of bar travel -> no more ball sack lockouts -> bigger deadlift.


Shouldn't let weak hips hold you back like these guys are saying! Develop hip strength and it will have no harmful side-effects!


I have short arms, and used to pull conventional until it just didn't go anywhere for years. Got up to about 585 through pure stubbornness. My conventional form is/was abysmal, could not get into a good starting position. Switched to sumo and while it was initially about a 60lb drop off, I stuck with it and passed my old conventional max by quite a bit. I advise trying it for a year and seeing how it goes. Your DL isn't going up anyway, what's the harm?


37 inch quads?


thanks for the advice all, i'll take it to heart and see what happends. My mistake lil over 34 quads