T Nation

Help My Deadlift Please

[quote]trivium wrote:
I think that the PUSH vs HINGE debate has a lot to do with leverages. It is not unanimously one way or the other, and many people have used different cues successfully.

DO NOT GET FIXATED ON ONE WAY OF DOING OR APPROACHING SOMETHING. TRY THEM ALL.[/quote]
I don’t think it’s really much of an either-or. It’s both. You push the ground away as you hinge with the hips. At the beginning of the lift there’s more pushing, at the end of the lift there’s more hinging, but both need to be there.

[quote]hmorcom wrote:
I try and visualise the lift as a leg press as opposed to a hinge. [/quote]
I was thinking more about the “push the ground away” cue. I think a better way to put it is “push the ground away with your heels”. That way you get the balance in the right place so the bar stays close to the body. If you’re pushing with the whole foot (so the weight is more midfoot), or even the balls of the feet, the bar can come forward… which will put the pressure right on your lower back.

So maybe try that. Try to push the ground away with your heels. Your upper body is going to have to shift so you don’t fall forward or back. Then when the bar gets to about mid or upper shin, focus on pushing your hips forward and up.

[quote]hmorcom wrote:
My low back fatigues very quickly when I pull, I think it’s because of my limb lengths, the angle that my back makes with the floor, is practically parallel and so my low back is the centre of the strain. Don’t get me wrong I never pull unless I’m confident I have my lumbar in a neutral position but is there any way to strengthen or rely less on my low back? As it appears to be the real weak link (or one of). [/quote]
Well, that’s why I mentioned the “lean back” idea. You seem to be leaned over forward in such a way that a lot of pressure is on your low back. I think the more you can get your torso upright, the better off you’ll be.

But to strengthen it, I think that’s where higher rep touch-n-go sets can come in. Use the eccentrics and the reps to get a lot of time under tension, and just stop when your back gets too rounded. Personally, for the past month I’ve been using touch-n-go mat/block pulls from mid shin, with chains, for 5-10 sets of 5, with 60 second rests.

Also from the other side, ab wheel rollouts, focusing on tucking your hips underneath you. So try to intentionally round your lower back while doing those. Makes them quite a bit harder, but shifts the emphasis.

All of this is based on what I’ve learned from others, and what’s helped me. And as I said above, my leverages are different than yours.

But irrespective of leverages, the more upright you can keep your torso, the less pressure there will be on your lower back. If you’re too upright, you won’t be able to apply enough force; if you’re too bent forward, you won’t be able to apply enough force.

[quote]LoRez wrote:

[quote]trivium wrote:
I think that the PUSH vs HINGE debate has a lot to do with leverages. It is not unanimously one way or the other, and many people have used different cues successfully.

DO NOT GET FIXATED ON ONE WAY OF DOING OR APPROACHING SOMETHING. TRY THEM ALL.[/quote]
I don’t think it’s really much of an either-or. It’s both. You push the ground away as you hinge with the hips. At the beginning of the lift there’s more pushing, at the end of the lift there’s more hinging, but both need to be there.

[/quote]

Definitely. Your leverages and chosen style will just determine if you have to do more hinging than pushing, or more pushing than hinging.

Its interesting because i used to deadlift with a much lower start position, hips much lower and legs in a much more closed angle, this helped me stay more upright in the lift. However i was told this was squatting the weight up and i can see how that is true but because of my shorter limb lengths this felt more natural.

Any thoughts on this, it certainly seemed to stress my low back less, but it was always difficult breaking the weight off the floor.

I was convinced that by raising my hips i would be able to engage the glutes and hams more, which makes sense, but i still dont seem to get that currently.

Why hasn’t anyone mentioned the hyperextension of the upperback? This might cause the abdominal brace to fall completely apart, right? Shouldn’t he keep his ribs sortof “tucked in” so that his abdominal muscles and erector muscles are at the right length? Wouldn’t this also bring the bar a bit closer to his lower back, further diminishing the amount of work the lower back has to do?

Or is this not a problem? Or is his upperback actually in the neutral position?

[quote]hmorcom wrote:
I was convinced that by raising my hips i would be able to engage the glutes and hams more, which makes sense, but i still dont seem to get that currently.[/quote]
Perhaps figure out how to recruit your glutes and hams more then? Again, lots of options here. Then use that knowledge and apply to your deadlift.

[quote]hmorcom wrote:
Its interesting because i used to deadlift with a much lower start position, hips much lower and legs in a much more closed angle, this helped me stay more upright in the lift. However i was told this was squatting the weight up and i can see how that is true but because of my shorter limb lengths this felt more natural.

Any thoughts on this, it certainly seemed to stress my low back less, but it was always difficult breaking the weight off the floor.

I was convinced that by raising my hips i would be able to engage the glutes and hams more, which makes sense, but i still dont seem to get that currently.[/quote]

Stiff leg deadlifts have helped me learn to use my glutes and hams more.

[quote]Foul Flesh wrote:
Why hasn’t anyone mentioned the hyperextension of the upperback? This might cause the abdominal brace to fall completely apart, right? Shouldn’t he keep his ribs sortof “tucked in” so that his abdominal muscles and erector muscles are at the right length? Wouldn’t this also bring the bar a bit closer to his lower back, further diminishing the amount of work the lower back has to do?

Or is this not a problem? Or is his upperback actually in the neutral position?
[/quote]
Watch some olympic lifters do their thing with their “hyperextended” upper back. It may/may not be ideal from a powerlifting standpoint, but I see it as a non-issue.

I could be completely wrong with this, but the real issue I see is that his positioning isn’t spreading the load very well over the rest of his body. It’s instead concentrated very heavily in the lower back, which is the limiting factor. So I see two solutions: strengthen the lower back, and/or find a way to shift more of the load elsewhere.

But again, could be completely wrong.

Another thing that may help you.

I can’t see your grip, but mixed grip will allow most people to lift more weight because they can hold on to the bar better.

Why don’t you use chalk? Is your bar that heavily knurled that you don’t need it?

That point about having a hyperextended upper back is interesting, it’s something id never even considered that might be problematic… However wouldn’t it have the same affect as if I were to deadlift with a slightly rounded upper back which I’ve seen many power lifters do. Not that I am at all comparing myself…

But I agree that I feel the load is concentrated on my low back, due to positioning and rightly so, the options are either to strengthen the low back or re distribute the load by changing leverages or positioning.

Don’t get me wrong, I certainly feel my hamstrings and glutes workin when I perform a stuff legged deadlift or a hip thrust, just that when I conventionally deadlift I feel it much less.

I don’t have any chalk at the minute that’s the only reason, I generally like to use a double overhand grip but if I thought that was the limiting factor I could switch to mixed or even use the straps I have.

I had a go at trying some sumos and they are considerably more difficult I found. I appreciate that I haven’t gone it a fair go so will continue to practice for a while before I can make a decision as to whether they are more my style.

Try not tilting your head upwards like that. Dont know if it’s a big issue, but looks wrong to me.

Don’t know if it’s just a mental thing, but I find tilting my head up helps me get the weight up. I’ve tried tucking my chin to keep a straight line from skull to tail bone, just feels less natural. If you think it may be an issue it’s something I can definitely alter.

I cannot tell you how many times I have seen people have deadlift problems, and the culprit was grip strength despite the fact that they didn’t drop the lift.

Universally, it is never the wrong answer to chalk up your hands a bit.

"That being said I have deadlifted every week without fail, as I was of the impression that repetition would sort my issues. I’ve even deadlifted multiple times per week, on consecutive days… I tried taking 2 weeks off from deadlifting, trained today and no difference. "

Your going to have start from square one. Do 1 set of 5 reps with good form…hpw many days does it take you to recover and easily add 20 lbs for one set? You will need to find that formula and add the variables to adjust. Also consider your Dead might not be your best lift, your muscle insertions might be different even compared to someone of your same build.

Moving house today so deadlifting may be put on hold for a little while, but I’ll endeavour to get hold of some chalk and begin the quest for a respectable pull from scratch. Will keep you posted, will still try and record some videos so you can critique for me, appreciate advice so far!

I didn’t read through the entire thread so I don’t really know where it went, my peice of advice is throw on a belt. I know that is a given, but for example my beltess pull is some where around 470ish pounds IE 214 KG. My porject 1RM which I am testing on monday is about 585 or 260ish with a belt. I just totally suck at all beltess work, you very well might have the same problem.

Also, don’t be affraid to deadlift heavy twice a week. I went from deadlifting heavy once a week, to twice and squatting 3 times a week. I have gotten significantly stronger since making this change. My last thing would be to Hammer your back. I have seen a lot of deadlifts lost because upper and mid back weakness. I would definatly recommend anyone on a series program to do atleast 1 heavy back movement everytime they walk into the gym. GL and get some sick deadlift gains.

What kind of gym do you go to where people just walk behind you as you get set up like that?

That’d start a fight at my gym. You could maybe get away w/ it when someone’s on a machine, but DL? c’mon

Have moved house now, moved up north with work and am now a member of puregym, so will hopefully be getting back into the swing of things! I see your point about a belt and I can appreciate your reasoning, but I don’t want to be that guy who relies on a belt to break a deadlift which isn’t really that worthy of a belt. Definitely agree with hammering the back though!

Yeah that’s just the type of gym, small and local so everyone kinda does that, but like I said I’m at puregym now which seems much larger!