T Nation

Lining Up Evenly with Figure 8 Straps on Deadlifts


After four years of mixed-grip deadlifting and no competitive aspirations, I’ve decided to switch to straps for deadlifting anything I can’t hold on to with double-overhand. I bought figure 8 straps and I love everything about them except that I rarely seem to get an even grip on the bar with them. I’m usually slightly off to one side or another.

Da-Dunk. Da-dunk. Da-dunk. This is no good. Very annoying. I want one solid THUD per rep.

I’m also not a strongman, but I figured this forum probably has the most experience with figure 8 straps.

Anybody have any cues or tips that work for them?


You basically need to make a trade off between hand position and strap tightness. I prefer hand position than tight straps.

I also have a setup routine to try minimise the differences between pulls.


I make sure the loops are adequately high on my wrist when addressing the bar.

I square the straps up with my thumbs pointed upward and the straps about 3 inches outside where I would like to hold the bar, then pull up and roll my hands inward to grab the bar. Finding the desired pivot point took some practice. I can shimmy hand position a little if I need to without going through all the steps, maybe a half inch or so.

I like these better than the single loop straps because my hands are still directly on the bar without webbing in between.


I think I know what you mean. I’ve tried lining up with my hands and with the strap placement, usually coming up a bit uneven.

I had one and it worked great for mixed-grip pulling. Now I need my figure 8 strap routine.

I’ve been doing the opposite, pulling them as low and as tight as I could, getting tension on the bar through the straps before initiating the pull.

Maybe this is where I’m going wrong.

Thanks both of you for the suggestions. I’ll play around with it more next week.


I probably over emphasized the importance of pulling the loops up the wrist. That’s just a cue I use to defy gravity’s tendency to pull the loops too far over my hands when I’m scrunched down to grab the bar before I run out of breath.

I took pics of my set-up, without the chalk marks I normally use to position the big loop (dudes were waiting for the rack) but you’ll get the gist of what I’m doing here.

Edit: And of course they were displayed reverse of th order I intended.


This set-up looks like it makes a lot more sense. Thanks @bigjeff68


if you’re still trying to figure this out, I can make a video showing how I do it.


@flipcollar Thanks, but I think I know what I’m doing now. I’m doing deads tomorrow I’ll see how it goes. If I leave the gym feeling like a moron I might hit you up.

Unsurprisingly, I was using these completely wrong. I was just looping them around the bar and letting it hang on the straps. Probably shortened up my normal ROM by an inch too.


I got it now guys. Thanks to all who responded. I was definitely not using these correctly at all.

Tonight I didn’t quite get my thumb around the bar, but it didn’t seem to matter once I clinched them up AWAY from my wrists and took a monkey-paw grip. Maybe I got a size too small but these worked fine on my top set today, producing five solid thuds on the ground and a much easier line-up of my hands.

I have to say, these straps just felt rock-solid. Maybe regular straps were too, but I only used them a few times. I’m excited to see what I can do with these.

Thanks again everyone.


This is how I grip the axle bar with these straps. Even with the XL size, they aren’t long enough to get the thumb around, but it still works well.