4 Keys to Improving Your Deadlift Today - insidefitnessmag.com
Written by Tim Rigby, M.A, NSCA-CPTY & Brought to you by PVL Supplements

The deadlift exercise is currently experiencing a surge in popularity, even though it’s been around for as long as people have been lifting weights. In basic essence, a heavy weight is positioned on the floor, and your task is to lift it up. Not overhead, not to your chest – simply to about the level of your thighs. This is the usual finish (top) location after you’ve lifted the weight using fully extended arms and have straightened up. From there, it’s simply a matter of reversing the path and lowering the weight back to the floor.

The deadlift has a myriad of applications, which is why more and more people are appreciating that it’s not just for powerlifters. Women everywhere are embracing this move and for good reason – it’s effective and efficient. In fact, the deadlift uses more muscles in your body than any other exercise; thus, you’re able to lift more weight than in any other exercise. The deadlift produces both strength and muscle efficiently, and if you use a relatively lighter weight for high reps, you’ll get one heck of a calorie burn.

So why do many people fall short of their potential gains with the deadlift? To say technique is vital would be an understatement. Although it’s a basic movement, the positioning of your body and execution of the lift can both make enormous differences. The following info will ensure that the most important elements of technique are carried out. Although it’s difficult to remember several things at once, keep grinding and practicing hard – the muscle memory will come and you’ll soon maintain a power position each time you perform the deadlift.


>> Begin as close to the bar as you can get. Yes, we’re talking about setting up with your lower shins in contact with the bar. The further away you are from the bar, the more difficult the lift will become. It’s not just an efficiency issue – in fact, it’s a safety issue too. Any amount of reaching forward to the bar will place undue strain on your back and shoulders. This principle applies to any time you’re lifting a heavy object such as a water cooler jug; lift it as close to your core as you can, which makes things easier.

>> Keep your head in line with your spine. Another safety step which also increases your strength potential is to keep your head in a neutral position to your spine. The temptation, of course, is to drop your head and look down at the bar as you’re picking it up. However, as you rise up, maintain the same neutral head position right up to the top. You’re completely free to raise your eyes, however, since there’s a psychological advantage of looking at the ceiling (the direction of the ascent).

>> Never pull the bar with your arms. You may be surprised at this point, since after all it’s your arms which support the bar. However, under no circumstance should you attempt to hitch the bar upward using your arms; they are there simply to act as meat hooks. Use a strong grip and squeeze the bar for sure – but due to the fact the weight is very heavy, you must let the stronger muscle groups (your legs and back especially) do the vast majority of the lifting.

>> Use your legs more than your back. To elaborate on the previous point, think of the deadlift as an “upside-down squat”. There is enormous involvement of your legs in both the ascent and descent of the bar during the deadlift. You may have always thought this is predominantly a back exercise; although your back certainly plays a big role in completing the movement, the deadlift is the greatest compound exercise of all. The movement itself should very much be initiated by forcefully pressing into the floor to extend your legs.

As soon as you’ve completed your deadlift workout, make sure to initiate great recovery with PVL’s industry-leading ISOGOLD 100% whey protein. Consume 1-2 shakes per day, even on your off days. Also be sure to regularly consume EAA + BCAA COMPLETE from PVL each day.

Using these four key deadlift points, you’ll enjoy both instant gains and long-term increases in strength and muscle!

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