The Caveman's Essential Exercises: The Deadlift
The deadlift isn’t part of your workout?! Well, it should be. This exercise works so much of your body; you’ll feel it in your lower body and core. Check out how to do the deadlift below!
Step By Step:
1. Holding the barbell (or two dumbbells at your side), keep your arms straight and knees slightly bent.
2. Slowly bend at your hip joint, not your waist, and lower the weights as far as possible without rounding your back, which should remain straight. Make sure you keep your spine neutral with a natural low-back arch, with shoulders down. Looking forward, not at the ground, will help you avoid rounding your back.
3. Keep the barbell close to your legs, almost touching them.
4. Squeeze your glutes to pull yourself up at a quicker pace than it took to bend down (Beginners take four seconds to bend down and two seconds to pull up). Don’t use your back and do not round your spine.
5. You should be using a weight where you can do three sets of 12 to 15 reps before fatiguing your muscles — but remember that you should be able to still do the move correctly on your last rep.
6. To add intensity to the exercise, try using heavier weights. You can also increase repetitions. Another way to add intensity to your deadlift workout is by reducing the amount of rest you take between sets. Try doing a set of deadlifts, then resting for only one minute.
-When you start deadlifting, don’t load up on weight. Learn how to do the move correctly first, then gradually increase the weight. Try it first with a broomstick or a barbell without weights!
-Use an alternating grip if the weight gets too heavy.
-If you start the deadlift while looking down, there is a good chance your hips will lift up causing you to lose form and lift with your lower back. This is a very common deadlift mistake. Think about exploding your head upward while trying to stand erect. The body will follow the head.
-Position your feet about halfway under the bar. From a side view it should look like the bar is running directly through the middle of your feet. Looking down, it can be difficult to gauge if your foot position is correct, so ask another lifter for guidance or video tape your deadlift set up.