Conventional deadlifts i feel in my posterior chain the most, but RDL’s and GM’s I certainly feel in my glutes and hamstrings.[/quote]
Ahhh…not to nit pick but glutes and hams are part of the posterior chain.
To the OP,
Personally I feel conventional deads in my glutes (not as much my hams, but I do feel them a little). My glutes get sore the next day as well. For me conventional deads are the best glute developer.
But, that’s not to say that they are the best glute developer for everyone. I know people who don’t feel them in their glutes, but more so in the upper and lower back. Could it be a form issue? Yeah. We haven’t really seen you DL. It could also be that your glutes just have weak neuromuscular connections and that you lack the ability to adequately recruit them.
Now depending on your goals you have several options (and these are just some options, there are probably others as well).
If your goal is strength (either as a powerlifter or for a sport), and you feel that deadlifts are essential to your program, then I’d suggest not worrying about it too much as long as the weight continues to increase. Or, you may want to switch to sumo deadlifts as they tend to prevent the lower back from taking the brunt of the work.
If you goal is muscle and you either really like the deadlift or you really want to keep it in your program, then I’d suggest going back and re-learning how to do them while recruiting your glutes/hammies.
To do this use a very light weight (you’ll really have to leave your ego at the door if you do this because you will have to drastically reduce the weight you’re lifting) and instead of just going through the motions, focus on contracting your glutes/hammies against the resistance. This may take some practice, but you’ll build the mind muscle connection if you work at it.
From there gradually increase resistance as your glutes/hammies become stronger and your mind muscle connection improves. Once you’ve really built the connection you won’t have to focus on it as much, it’ll just happen naturally.
- If your goal is muscle and you’re just doing deadlifts because someone told you to, or you think that you need to, then you might want to reconsider keeping it in your program. I’m not saying that it’s not a great exercise, but if other exercises hit the glutes/hammies better than deads, then why not use them?
Remember that if muscle is the primary goal, then it’s not the name of the exercise that matters, but instead whether that exercise works well for YOU.
You may also find that you need to include different variations of Deads anyhow to focus more on your hammies (SLDL’s, RDL’s, Sumos). Those are generally better hammie exercises than conventional DL’s.