T Nation

Deficit DL Form Check


Hi friends!! I have registered myself for a powerlifting meet coming up in may and now I all of a sudden think my form is horrid. I am not sure if this is all in my head, but I would like some opinions from ya’ll if you wouldn’t mind!

I also attempted to use my powerlifting belt from years ago and I found it super huge and uncomfortable and I ordered a smaller one in the mail, but I am wondering it that doesn’t feel very good either if they typically let people lift without a belt ??? I’m super short and have no torso so a belt kinda takes over my whole body…

Anyway, any advice would be welcome.
These are my deficit DL 175 x 3 from today.

What Business is it of Yours Where I'm From, Friendo?

Make sure you are driving your glutes through at lockout, but otherwise you’re absolutely fine. Feel free to add some more weight, it looked easy!

Don’t stress about deadlift form at a powerlifting meet - stay tight and keep your lower back safe, but otherwise just go for it. Deadlifts don’t require the same intricacies of technique as the squat, and maximal lifts usually look best when lifted aggressively without too much conscious thought. Analysis can limit you if you’re already at a reasonable level technique-wise.

EDIT: And yes, beltless is definitely legal if you can’t figure it out in time, but if you train with the belt you should be able to get used to it (especially if you’ve ordered a narrower deadlift belt). Good luck!


very nice form. as halcj1 said, there are alot more things to worry about a PL meet than DLs. Most people fail due to technical issues such as not pausing at the bottom of a bench press or not going below parallel in the squat. Hopefully you have attended at least 1 PL meet to see what happens.

Also, do you plan on wearing a compression suit and bench shirt? The compression suit will help quite a bit in your lifts but you should practice with them in the gym before your meet.

Good luck


Thanks for your input guys, much appreciated !
I just figure I have about three months to put in a lot of solid training, but I want to start out right off the bat with getting any technical stuff sorted out!

I am kind of worried though because I noticed that with my belt on I felt like iw as going to crap myself, haha…heh.:flushed:

does anyone else have this problem?

Also, just to warn you I might be starting like 1000 threads in the near future with all the stuff I am worried about…


HI!, No I am not wearing any compression stuff, just worrying about the belt is enough, Haha.

Thanks for your feedback !


Form looked good, I’d just watch when your lowering the weight looks like your stiff legging it down. Might not be good on the lower back if you don’t drop the weight at the right time on a rep.

As for the belt I used to have that problem when first using a belt I had it too tight. I started putting it looser and gradually went right with it over time.


OH! I never really thought about how to lower the weights properly. Should I be setting it down faster/less anally to conserve energy or something??


I would just use your legs a bit more lowering the weight, odds are you’d be fine doing it how you are but only takes one time to mess up your back good.


oh, I have another question!!!

I ordered a temp belt that’s going to come today while I wait for the one I really want which wont come for like 6 weeks, but they didn’t really have my size in stock (I clearly have no patience, Lol), will they care at the meet if I’ve drilled a hole in my belt to make it smaller???


For belts, look for one that is 2" in front and 4" in back. There are cheap ones on Amazon to see if you like them, then buy a good one if you do. Conversely, these are the type of belts most commercial gyms have, Maybe get lucky and they will have one that fits.

Lower the weight like you would lower anything. Literally pick up a pillow and lower it to the ground. That is your natural path, do that with the barbell and see how it feels.

I’m “training” some co workers and one gal has never lifted in her life. She can pick up the bar well, but putting it down is so weird for her. I said don’t think about it, just put it on the ground like a piece of laundry and now it is a little more natural.

Form from off the ground to lockout is spot on, even for a deficit pull where there is naturally more forward pull off the ground.

And feel free to post all questions. Powerlifting communities are very helpful, we leave the bros over at other forums :slightly_smiling:


thanks very much for the feedback. And I agree, ya’ll powerlifters are a wonderful breed !!


I have to respectfully disagree here. A belt is NOT for your back…it is for your abdominal wall. When you contract a muscle, it expands. The belt provides resistance for your abdominal wall to push against when squatting or deadlifting, thus increasing your capacity. Just like your compression suits and bench shirt. If you’re getting pinched when lifting, then turn the belt around and put the buckle in the back. You will see this in a lot of PL meets.