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Using a Belt 'Causes' Rounding with Deadlifts

I’ve noticed with myself that whenever I use a belt for Deadlifting, my back rounds more than without a belt. This happens straight from the first rep.
Most of the times a can pull the same weight without a belt (but far less reps, slower etc) with a straight back.

I think it’s because I’m using the belt the same way as I do with Squats. I breathe in and push out against the belt. But because I push out it feels like my back will round because of it.

Does that make any sense or should I look at other culprits?
Should I just ditch the belt for Deads?

I had the same problem before trying a higher belt position. I’m a round back puller anyway so my upper back is a bit rounded whether or not I wear a belt. George Leeman has a good video on the matter.


I tried it a few times, but it’s been a while. I’ll give it go next time.

I’m also playing with idea to work on my form with Squats and Deadlifts (again, never ending battle), what would be a good way to do this for a long while and still be able to pull/squat heavy when I wan’t to?

One day a week, lighter weights and focus on form/technique, or use the warm-ups and off sets to do that?
I like to Squat 2 times a weak and Deadlift once.

Like Furius said, I wear the belt higher with deads than squat. If that doesn’t help, make sure you aren’t wearing the belt too tight. You want it to be snug, but not to the point it throws off your form.


One thing I forgot to mention: I’m a huge fan of using a ‘soft’ belt on deadlifts. I use a thick lever lock belt on all other lifts but on deadlifts, I have to use a softer leather one. A thick and hard belt makes me feel like shit while deadlifting. I’ve also found it easier to find the exact correct tightness for a soft belt than any other ones.

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Will you get weaker if you step your width out or pull your hands in when you squat?

No, but a wide stance Squat is really hard on my hips and with it I have a problem hitting depth.

Buy a power belt with a narrow front. Problem solved.

I also have recently found this to be true.

I have an old Olympic style belt, might try that monday.

Yes, many people recommend NOT using your 4" high 10mm or 13mm thick “squat” belt for deadlifts. Different lift, different belt. That being said, I do personally still use my regular 4" belt for pulling, but I have been considering getting a separate deadlifting belt.

Because you lean forward and push off belt with stomach , i have always pulled raw, only get a few pounds out of with belt.

It differs a lot from person to person. If I were to pull sumo, I would definitely use the “squat belt”.

I tried the olympic belt a few times, it felt…different. I might consider ditching a belt entirely for a while.
I agree with Furius that when trying Sumo, the wider powerlifting belt works better because your much more upright. But I don’t plan on switching to Sumo style