T Nation

RDL vs. Good Morning

From the hips downward, the movements are pretty much the same (i.e. hip extension). But I’ll list a few obvious differences and I guess we can go from there.


  • works grip strength
  • can generally handle more weight

Good Morning

  • works core harder (from my experience when working in a similar rep range, at least)

From guys with experience doing both for extended amounts of time, what are your thoughts? I know they are both good exercises if used correctly, but I haven’t found a ton of discussion of the pros and cons of either.

While they do have differences, they are very similar overall. For me, I just find RDLs to work better. That’s entirely personal, though. Try both; see what you like more, and be sure that you give both a fair chance.

Personally, I find RDLs more useful in my training. I have a hard time maintaining correct form when using an appreciable load on goodmornings due to the lower back fatigue associated from squats and other related movements.