T Nation

To Deadlift or Not

Here is what Nasser said in an old interview on www.bodybuilding.com

"Then I heard the big BS - “… but Dorian had him (Nasser) from the back.” The only body part I give Yates when he supposedly had me was his tremendous lower back development but not his thickness or back width.

The Olympia is not a lower back contest. An Olympia title is not to be given out to the best lower back - otherwise why do all of us still train all of the other body parts?"

With all due respect to Nasser, Dorian absolutely had him in the back department in '97 IMO, especially in the traps department.

Nasser '97 Olympia

Yates '97 Olympia
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EFwfmJRVDqY

In regards to deadlifts, look at the BB’er who has arguably the best traps in pro BB’ing atm; Johnnie Jackson. JJ is a big deadlifter and has stated that he no longer even directly trains his traps, only deadlifts.

Coleman also had some pretty impressive traps and he was a big DL’er.

There are of course others who don’t perform DL’s and still have great backs, so I’m not saying that everyone must do them. It’s more a matter of preference and of course doing the exercises that work best for the individual.

I think beginners will benefit alot more from them than someone who has 5 plus years of bodybuilding training. i think they help most when your a skinny bastard.

I think there are guys that don’t need them and can get away without them. However, I think that is a pretty small number. Generally people just make excuses not to do them because they are hard.

I also find it to be a time saver in the gym. To me it’s either do deads or do rows, and lat pulls, and good mornings, and ham curls, and grip work, ect.

How do you all think SLDL’s compare to DL’s when it comes to lower back development?

I have personally cut them from my routine, as they cause (mild to moderate) pain in my lower back. I had been hesitant to do this, because many a bodybuilder claim them to be the biggest, baddest movement, and I was also seeing improvement.

However, I saw the guy in the wheelchair’s back size from an earlier post I put up, and it made me finally decide to drop them altogether.

Yes I think they are a great exercise, but I don’t believe they are absolutely necessary.

Dexter Jackson does RDLs in a Smith Machine with 2 Plates a Side.

He Won the Sandow This Year.

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=QW09a7FrlGU

Why Do Deadlifts? Watch this. I’d rather look like THAT version of Ronnie than Dexter.

[quote]dwall33 wrote:
How do you all think SLDL’s compare to DL’s when it comes to lower back development?[/quote]

For me SLDL really hit glutes and hams. If I want to really hit my lower back GM’s do the trick. Also Hypers.

How else do you build good traps without deadlifting? Seems to me that nothing beats pulling a lot of heavy weight and using your traps to stabilize the load for building up your traps.

Power cleans built my traps. I don’t have to train them directly anymore b/c they just grow pretty much by themselves it seems.

For traps alone rack deadlifts blow mine out of the water, deadlifts do everything else in the posterior chain :slight_smile:

[quote]PRCalDude wrote:
How else do you build good traps without deadlifting? Seems to me that nothing beats pulling a lot of heavy weight and using your traps to stabilize the load for building up your traps. [/quote]

Shrugs, face pulls and other types of rows, olympic lift variations, there are plenty of other exercises that build the traps.

Now, whether or not the individual personally feels that they get better trap growth from the above exercises or from doing DL’s and DL variations is something that one has to figure out for yourself.

Personally I don’t see why you can’t do both. There seems to be a tendency of “either or” when usually a better answer is both. Just do the exercises that work best for YOU, let everyone else worry about what works best for them.

I’m not saying to not look around and observe what other successful people do, or not take the advice of people who have helped others build impressive physiques. But you’ve got to actually give things an honest shot before you can say for certain whether it’s for you.

[quote]Sentoguy wrote:

Personally I don’t see why you can’t do both. [/quote]

Honestly, I think most people would agree it’s hard to fit Olympic Lifts into a Bodybuilding regime.

[quote]300andabove wrote:
For traps alone rack deadlifts blow mine out of the water, deadlifts do everything else in the posterior chain :)[/quote]

Technically, except for traps (and arm involvement), back squats activate nearly the same muscle groups as deadlifts (glutes, hams, hip flexors, calves, suprasinaliss[lowerback], etc). I can stop doing deads for months, come back and still hit close to the same load because of back squats.

[quote]ktennies wrote:
I have personally cut them from my routine, as they cause (mild to moderate) pain in my lower back. I had been hesitant to do this, because many a bodybuilder claim them to be the biggest, baddest movement, and I was also seeing improvement.

However, I saw the guy in the wheelchair’s back size from an earlier post I put up, and it made me finally decide to drop them altogether.

Yes I think they are a great exercise, but I don’t believe they are absolutely necessary.[/quote]

Well good luck and you know your body better than anyone, but just because you see a couple individuals who “break the rules” (and it’s not a rule, that’s just an expression) and get away with it, doesn’t mean that you can too.

I train a guy from time to time who has hyooge traps, johnnie jackson esque traps. He’s told me that he has NEVER trained his traps directly and doesn’t even DL often or much weight. The guy just has freaky genetics for traps.

Now if I took this example and ran with it I might falsely come to the conclusion that I too never need to train my traps directly or DL much weight. Which of course would be false (unfortunately).

My point is that if you quit because you fear injury, fine. If you quit because the exercise wasn’t working for you, fine. But don’t quit simply because you see an exceptional individual who gets away with not doing what most others need to do and you think that you can do the same.

Unless maybe you have always had huge traps for your build or your father/mother has huge traps (basically you are genetically predisposed to having big traps).

[quote]Lorisco wrote:
300andabove wrote:
For traps alone rack deadlifts blow mine out of the water, deadlifts do everything else in the posterior chain :slight_smile:

Technically, except for traps (and arm involvement), back squats activate nearly the same muscle groups as deadlifts (glutes, hams, hip flexors, calves, suprasinaliss[lowerback], etc). I can stop doing deads for months, come back and still hit close to the same load because of back squats. [/quote]

But not lats and upper back so much.

[quote]PRCalDude wrote:
How else do you build good traps without deadlifting? Seems to me that nothing beats pulling a lot of heavy weight and using your traps to stabilize the load for building up your traps. [/quote]

There’s nothing wrong with my traps and I don’t deadlift. In fact, at this point, they may need to drop in size.

You all have forgotten about shrugs?

at the moment I’ve been concentrating on rack pulls as opposed to deadlifts.

imo its better for beginners to start with rack pulls so they can get a feel for what deadlifts will be like and the kind of form they need.

I used to be a hardcore believer in deadlifts and still think they are an incredible exercise.But I think they are a dangerous exercise once you can really move some serious weight on them.

I’ve seen too many lifters get seriously injured, and I;m not talking about lower back injury either. For a BBer who can routinely move in excess of 500 pounds for reps, its a question of when rather than if imo.

Strongly recommend you use a double overhand grip (with straps if you need em) rather than a mixed grip. Rack deads with a mixed grip are a disaster waiting to happen.

[quote]jtg987 wrote:
at the moment I’ve been concentrating on rack pulls as opposed to deadlifts.

imo its better for beginners to start with rack pulls so they can get a feel for what deadlifts will be like and the kind of form they need. [/quote]