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Safe High Rep Multijoint Posterior Chain Movement


I've been following the guidelines Dan John lays out in Easy Strength. Cycle of 5/3/1 then high rep squats.

I want to do high rep everything.

what was deadlift day will be good morning day for 3x20@35% 1rm

Bench press 3x20@35% 1rm

Squat 3x20@35% 1rm

Standing military press 3x20@35% 1rm

I don't care what your opinion is on percentage based programs.

I want to know if it's safe to do good mornings for high reps or if the golden rule of deadlift reps applies (no more than 5 reps).


As long as your technique remains reasonable and you have no pre-existing back injuries I would say it's fine. An even safer alternative would be RDL's.


Obviously this will depend on the load you use.


Good mornings are/were "traditionally" done for higher reps, usually citing that you "shouldn't" go heavy on them due to a risk factor (Bruce Lee, and all that) so you should be fine as long as you're smart about it.

There's a golden rule that says deads should never be done for more than 5 reps? I'd probably agree with most of the time, but never? Nah.


The deadlift mimics the most basic of real world activities, bending over and picking something up. Any kid who has ever hauled hay during the summer knows that high rep/low weight deads (and power cleans) are not going to hurt you. But yes, I have done high rep good mornings frequently (actually prefer them to lower reps as I feel it puts less pressure on my spine). As someone else said, I think RDL's may be an even safer choice but that's just me.


I respectfully disagree. From my own experience I find it much easier to set my lats using the good morning. If I tried to set my lats with the RDL I'd be smashing and grinding my penis and nut sack off with the barbell.

This is also just in my opinion, but I think not locking out deadlifts, squats and good mornings decreases the stress at l5-s1


I'd totally agree with that. If there's one exercise in the gym that's full of "functional" carryover to the real world, it's probably the deadlift or some variation of it.

This is why I was confused by the "golden rule" the OP mentioned. If we're talking about low weight, that's a different situation since the risk is clearly reduced, but a hard and heavyish set of 8-12 (or more) deads can certainly be a regular option for a non-beginner. Just ask Wendler and pretty much anyone who's done 5/3/1.