T Nation

Resetting the Bar During Deadlifts


I've read articles on this site that advise differnt methods for doing sets of deadlifts.

I was just wondering which is the proper way to perform a set of deadlifts?

1) reset after each rep - reset the bar/weight back onto the ground

2) Constant tension - Don't let the bar or the weight touch the ground during the set

Currently I use constant tension but i have a feeling that's probably the improper way.

Currently I'm using a variation of bill starrs 5x5 program.


I don't think it really matters in the grand scheme of things. I think if you are weak off the floor, resetting is better. If your lockout sucks, constant tension.

Don't think too much, just start tugging and get strong.


Reset after reach rep! You have to look at the exercise definition, "DEAD LIFT". You are lifting a weight from a dead start. Now, if you analyze "constant tension" you have to wander where the load of the weight is going to be felt at the "bottom position" of the movement; Hams and lower back. IMO, when you start going into heavier weight than normal, you will feel pain and pull in your Hams and Lower back. If you want constant tension substitute DL's for Romanian DL's or Stiff-leg DL's.

I believe reset will help generate and incorporate more muscle fibers for max CNS firing of your muscles.

Good luck!


Preaching to the choir, Reverend Sergeant Q


I'm with Matt on this one. However, for deadlifts I think the bar should go to the ground in a "touch and go" style rather than a constant tension which is more reserved for something like RDLs.


Depends on your goal. Depends on your rep range.

If I'm doing anything under 5rm it is a DEAD lift. If I'm doing higher reps, 8-12 for example, it's touch and go. Why? Just feels more comfortable that way. Instinctive.


This is what I train by.


I touch the ground on every rep too, I just thought he meant touch and go by constant tension. :slightly_smiling:


LMAO! My students sometimes call me the reverend.


If you reset after every rep, it is harder to complete the set, as muscle loses tension and any energy stored will be dissipated. But you can set up properly on every rep with good form. Most people that do touch and go style have poorer form on subsequent reps. I have only seen seasoned competitve olympic lifers perform perfect deadlift (clean pulls really) on every rep with constant tension.