T Nation

Please Help with Deadlift Form


#1

Hey guys, I recently started including deadlifts in my routine and was hoping to get some help with my form. I haven't experienced any back pain after, but I think it would be best to correct any mistakes before I do. Anyways, thanks for any critiques you can give.

If you think a video with more reps would be better let me know..


#2

I feel like we could be twins...That's not a good thing. :frowning:

I'm having similar difficulties with my deadlift - in that my back needs to be more arched. I'm not going to give any critiques, as I'm trying to better my form as well (I wouldn't be able to give you very good advice).

I will say this, try to get your form better with low weight. I'm not sure how hard the weight you are lifting is for you, but if you could do several reps (say 10-15) with it without a lot of difficulty, then I would try to nail the form before adding any weight to it.


#3

Like you said, it's tough to say just from the one rep. It doesn't look like you've got an awful lot to work on, but your back looks a bit rounded in your starting position. What works for me in that respect is straightening my back in the starting position just enough to feel some tightness in my glutes, then digging my heels in to pull the bar up.

An article on here not too long ago (I think it was a Jim Wendler article) mentioned that you should be able to see the logo on your t-shirt n the mirror before you begin to pull. I found that quite a helpful point.

When you do perform more reps, do you come to a dead stop or do you touch and go?

Pangloss, I'm of the opinion that you don't need to have a pronounced arch in your back before you begin to pull (I'll try to find the Wendler article mentioned above), but I find that arching my back too much before I start the pull affects the speed at which my hips extend in contrast with my knees- that is to say that it is detrimental. The weight that the OP is using doesn't look like it is having an impact on his form particularly.

Oh, and lose the gloves OP.


#4

You have a ton to work on.

1- you need to take the weight down alot you should be using 135 at the most for a few weeks.

2- you need to improve your glute and or hamstring flexibility

3- you need to work on keeping your back flat/ slightly arched, NOTE this is not possible without #2.

When someone has adequate flexibility to deadlift properly, a few weeks are needed to accustom yourself to the exercise, loading your glutes and pulling with a flat back. After 2/3 weeks, your strength on this exercise will go up, significantly, week after week, for several weeks. One of the keys to this is that you feel tight, strong and controlled, with the majority of the strength coming through your glutes.

There is a simple fact that many people seem to ignore. ANY compound leg exercise is IMPOSSIBLE to do properly (and by that I mean, effectively using all the major muscles of the leg in an efficient and scaleable way) until one has adequate flexibility. That means lunges, step ups, deadlifts, squats, and any derivative of those. THIS IS YOUR PROBLEM. For you right now, there is no other. Dont worry about form because you PROBABLY (ill get to this in a second) lack the flexibility to execute the proper form.

Now it is remotely possible your flexibility is fine, but you just arent putting yourself in the right position, nor are you trying to maintain a flat/arched back. These two things can look similar. Judging from the vid, I'd say you are definitely a tight hip flexor/hamstring guy. Your glutes may be ok. Many guys have tight hamstrings and hip flexors but their glutes will be fine.


#5

I'd appreciate that Wielder article.

I do know that with me and my form, that I could definitely benefit with increased flexibility. So I agree with Shadow there. I'm not 100 percent sure that I would drop to 135, only because it seems to me that I need a little more on the bar to keep it from rolling. Then again, because of how the weight is designed, I'm lifting off of pegs (at the same level as it would be if the bar were on the floor) and 135 slides around way too easily for me.

What's with the glove comments? I saw them in my thread. Why should I not wear gloves?


#6

Tell you what, you tell me why you wear gloves, and I'll tell you why theres always a better, less ghey option. Before you give the classic response "I'm wearing them to keep my hands soft for the ladies", any woman worth your precious time likes a man with rough hands.


#7

Hm... Well, I would tell you that, but the truth is my hands are still getting pretty chewed up. I just assume they would be worse if I didn't wear gloves.


#8

Funny you should say that, while looking for the deadlift article which mentions ensuring you can see the logo on the chest of your t-shirt I found this:

http://www.tmuscle.com/free_online_article/sports_body_training_performance/mastering_the_deadlift_part_i

Near the end, the part about chalk. It suggests that gloves could actually make your hands worse- I've always found chalk a much better option. No luck finding the article I mentioned yet though.

I think the problem is that the wearing of lifting gloves has just become synonymous with douchebags over the years. Not that you have to wear gloves to be a douchebag, or vice versa...but it helps.


#9

Drop your hips, your ass is to high. You will have to pull your chest up to get your ass down.


#10

What gravel said.


#11

Is Wielder some grotesque bastard child of Jim Wendler / Joe Weider? Awesome!


#12

For deadlifting the only thing worse for you grip would be to put some vaseline on your hands before lifting. For other lifts it's not really a big deal.

Chalk will instantly improve your grip by not allowing the bar to slip. It's the bar moving in your hands thats chewing them up. It's happening even with the gloves. And when they get sweaty your skin gets soft and weak. Chalk will keep you dry and the bar wont move. You'll get callouses but those are beneficial if you manage them.

Lose the gloves while pulling. Or at least use chalk under the gloves and on top.


#13

I want to be a Wielder. See #2

wield (wield·er, wield·ed, wield·ing, wields)
1. To handle (a weapon or tool, for example) with skill and ease.
2. To exercise (authority or influence, for example) effectively. http://www.thefreedictionary.com/Wielder


#14

Gloves are no good because they basically make your hand fatter and your fingers shorter, reducing the distance your fingers can wrap around the bar.


#15

The reason I say drop to 135 is because your body hasn't yet IMO been loaded with a true deadlift. Your erectors have not been in the position of statically contracting against the load at a correct spine position, and your hamstrings and glutes have not properly pulled the bar off the floor. Its like saying you can start benching with 155 or 165 on the bar, sure you could DO it, but why not let your body get into the groove for a few weeks with a weight it can control. Also, that flexibility issue is probably going to take a good bit to fix. And IMO that is EVERYTHING that is wrong with your lift. All that shit about trying to get your chest up and all that? Thats what you do AFTER you have the adequate flexibility, not before.


#16

Thanks for the advice..I'll def decrease the weight and try to improve my flexibility for awhile. Which grip would you recommend? I think i remember reading somewhere that a mixed grip should be used for records and such and an overhand grip is used the rest of the time.


#17

One thing I haven't seen mentioned here yet is when lowering you should hinge at the hips first as you would when squatting and only start to bend your knees when the bar as passed them. You should not be bending your knees and rolling the bar over and around them. It should move in a straight line.


#18

One thing that might help, and I forgot to mention this to Pangloss in his thread:

Grab the bar, and THEN pull your body into the correct position to start the lift. It's like a sequence. Grab bar, touch shins to the bar, hips down, lower back arched, upper back tight, chest up, pull the slack out of the bar, and drive with the heels. Pretty much in that order.


#19

Use double-overhand until your grip limits the amount of weight you can use, then switch to mixed. This will allow you to build your supportive grip strength without limiting your deadlift progress.


#20

Women are only going to tell you they like soft hands if you have soft hands. Just like they'll tell you 'size doesn't matter', if you have a small dick.

Your hands don't have to be rough to be hard. Scrub them with a green Scotch-Brite pad at least once a day until they harden up. Really rough spots can be cut down using a razor or medium-grit sand paper prior to scrubbing.