A deadlift is a full body exercise and requires recruitment of near enough all muscle groups in the body. When performed correctly with good technique the lift brings many health benefits.
Deadlifting not only allows for you to pack on muscle mass and increase strength capabilities. It allows you to build a stronger and more stable core, this means you can hold a better posture in daily life and become more efficient at day to day activities. The deadlift develops the erector spinae and other back musculature such as the rhomboids, these muscles are responsible for maintaining a straight back and help to hold a good posture. Besides improving strength gains, posture and developing core strength, the deadlift is very transferable to day to tasks which involve lifting dead weight from the floor such as bags of shopping or a suitcase.
One factor to consider when training deadlifts is ensuring technique of the movement is correct. Progressions of the exercise allow for the correct positions in the deadlift to be achieved and refined. A beginner should start from positioning a dowel along the back and performing a hinge at the hip, this allows for someone to practise maintaining a neutral spine an developing the hip hinge movement. A kettlebell deadlift would be the next progression this starts to challenge the person not to round the back as the weight is now in front of the body. However, the movement has a shorter range of motion so becomes easier to hit certain positions, can be shortened with blocks.
The next progression would be onto a trap bar deadlift this allows for the movement pattern of the deadlift to be learnt easier as the trap bar allows for greater balance during the lift, meaning it is easier to maintain the neutral spine position. The trap bar also reduces the likelihood to hyperextend at the top of the lift, the high handles also offer greater ease for range of motion purposes.
The last progression would be a conventional deadlift on a straight bar is it requires the ability to manoeuvre the shins out the way as the bar is in front of the body unlike a trap bar. The conventional deadlift also means you are more likely to compensate and move out of position due to the position of the bar. However, the above progressions should mean you are ready for the conventional deadlift.
A lot of people primarily recruit with a big pull action through lower to mid back but one thing to focus on when moving through weight/rep ranges is to drive with your legs.
A few tips above of where you can start if a beginner and equally even if not a beginner but not quite sure your technique is right, these tips are useful for stripping your deadlift back and rebuilding it to maximise your lift and results.
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