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Deadlift: Explanation, Tips, Common Mistakes + Schedule

There is hardly a fitness exercise that appeals to more muscles than the deadlift.

The deadlift is one of the best compound exercises in the world of bodybuilding.

I see the deadlift exercise as a test of strength.

With this exercise, you can show what you are really worth in the gym.

You'll get a huge boost and kick in confidence when you break another deadlift record in your workouts.

Any strength athlete who wants to gain more muscle mass on the upper and lower body cannot ignore the deadlift exercise.

In this article, you will get the best deadlift tips and I will explain to you why the deadlift is the true King among the compound exercises.

Content of this article:

6 Reasons To Start Deadlifting

  1. Reason #1: Deadlifts Target All Muscles
  2. Reason #2: Lifting and Carrying in Everyday Life
  3. Reason #3: More Growth Hormone and Higher Testosterone Level
  4. Reason #4: You Get a Strong Core
  5. Reason #5: You Strengthen Your Grip
  6. Reason #6: Deadlifting Burns Body Fat

6 Most Common Deadlift Mistakes

  1. Deadlift Mistake #1: Starting from the top down
  2. Deadlift Mistake #2: You're not hitting the floor
  3. Deadlift Mistake #3: You Bounce Weights
  4. Deadlift Mistake #4: Keeping Your Hips Too Low
  5. Deadlift Mistake #5: You lean back too much
  6. Deadlift Mistake #6: You touch your shins

What I tell you in this article includes:

  • 6 Reasons Why You Want To Start Deadlifting Today
  • The most common deadlift mistakes beginners and advanced strength athletes make (you're probably doing this too)
  • How to properly perform the deadlift technique
  • A comparison between the conventional deadlift and the sumo deadlift
  • Deadlift training schedule for beginners, intermediate and advanced
  • And much, much more.
deadlift compound exercises

The Deadlift: Technique Explanation, 12 Tips, 6 MISTAKES & Training Schedule

Some strength athletes swear by the squat, others consider the deadlift their favorite exercise.

Both the squat and the deadlift are indispensable in the schedule of every strength athlete.

And for the strength athletes who think squats are more important than deadlifts:

Have you ever considered that the deadlift exercise can actually be seen in part as a squat exercise?

The advantage of the deadlift is that you train many more muscle groups with it and that you gain more strength and muscle mass in a relatively short period of time.

It is the perfect exercise to create more explosiveness and balance.

Weekly deadlifts will make your lower back jump forward.

The deadlift also provides a strong core.

By a strong core, I mean the central muscles of the body such as the lower back, buttocks, and abdominal area.


6 Reasons To Start Deadlifting

Reason #1: Deadlifts Target All Muscles

Have you just started bodybuilding and do you want to grow more muscles and faster?

Then we automatically arrive at the deadlift.

The deadlift exercise engages more muscles than any other bodybuilding exercise.

The deadlift is a real mass builder for both your lower body and your upper body.

  • It is the best compound exercise there is.

With deadlifts, you train, among other things:

  • forearms
  • Legs
  • buttocks
  • Calves
  • trapezius
  • abs
  • Back

If you have limited time and still want to train your body fully and intensively, the deadlift is the only right choice.

Because you use your entire body with deadlifts, you can use relatively heavyweights, which is important if you want to build muscle mass quickly.

And this applies not only to men but also to women:

  • A study done by Texas Tech University shows that women can significantly increase their muscle mass after just three weeks of deadlifting.

This is good and encouraging news for women who are hesitant to start strength training.

Contrary to popular belief, strength training will give you visible results in just a few weeks.

If you want to start with strength training then there will be plenty of exercises that you can do at home.

Reason #2: Lifting and Carrying in Everyday Life

You probably don't realize it, but in our daily lives, we do the move very often.

So it can't hurt to get stronger in this.

An exercise like the bench press is nice to pump up your pecs, but you don't use the movement often in everyday life.

The deadlift develops the muscles you need to carry or lift something.

This exercise is seen as injury-prone by laymen, but that is incorrect.

The deadlift, when performed properly, is the ultimate exercise for building more muscle mass and gaining extra strength.

Because you also know what the correct lifting position is, you run a lot less risk of back injuries.

Someone who never does strength training is more likely to have a hernia or lumbago.

Reason #3: More Growth Hormone and Higher Testosterone Level

The deadlift and squat are by far the best exercises you can do to increase testosterone naturally.

The deadlift is a compound exercise that targets the largest muscle groups in your body.

This puts increased metabolic stress on your body giving you a huge boost in your testosterone levels.

In my view, the deadlift is more effective than the squat for burning body fat quickly and getting more testosterone and growth hormone into your body.

Reason #4: You Get a Strong Core

The deadlift exercise provides more strength and contributes to your core stability.

The deadlift appeals to all the muscles that are responsible for good posture.

This ensures strong back muscles and positive effects on bone and connective tissue.

The back muscles protect and support your vertebrae so that you are less likely to suffer from back pain.

If performed properly, this exercise only has positive effects on your body.

Reason #5: You Strengthen Your Grip

Nothing is more annoying when you're lifting heavy weights and you have to stop because you feel like your barbell is slipping out of your hands.

Your hands and forearms are the determining factors with deadlifts.

Deadlifting often will give you better grip strength and a stronger grip.

What I recommend with deadlifts is:

  • The mixed grip

In the gym, you often see people deadlifting with an overhand grip (both palms facing you).

With the mixed grip, you have the palm of your right hand facing away from you and the palm of your left hand facing you.

This way of holding ensures that the barbell does not slip from your thumbs so that you can better develop the grip strength.

Reason #6: Deadlifting Burns Body Fat

Because the deadlift exercise engages so many muscles in your body, it is an ideal way to burn a lot of energy.

An intensive deadlift workout contributes to the burning of excess body fat because your metabolism is significantly increased.

An increase in your metabolism means that you use more energy, which your body wants to recover as quickly as possible.

  • This also uses your fat reserves and you will burn fat

A study done on overweight people confirmed this.

The subjects in this study were divided into three groups:

  • Group 1: diet group
  • Group 2: diet + aerobics group
  • Group 3: diet + aerobics + strength training group

Group 1 only had to stick to the diet and did not participate in sports.

Groups 2 and 3 trained in strength training or aerobics three times a week for 12 weeks.

  • After twelve weeks it was found that the diet group (group 1) had lost 6.6 kg of fat.
  • Group 2 had lost just over 7 kg of fat.
  • And group 3 had achieved the most results and lost 9.5 kg of body fat!

In other words, intense strength training pays off for anyone looking to build muscle and lose body fat.

6 Most Common Deadlift Mistakes

I regularly see strength athletes deadlift in the most clumsy and dangerous ways.

They lift the heaviest weights off the floor without knowing if they are actually doing it right.

Good execution of the deadlift is necessary to avoid back injuries.

I'll walk you through some common mistakes so hopefully, you'll never make these deadlift mistakes.

Deadlift Mistake #1: Starting from the top down

Don't confuse deadlifts with squats.

You don't have to walk out of the rack with the bar and weights.

Also, don't start the performance if you've lifted the weights off the floor.

You start each deadlift rep with the bar and weight on the floor. Then, as the name suggests, you lift the 'dead weight'.

Deadlift Mistake #2: You're not hitting the floor

Deadlifts are meant to ALWAYS touch the floor briefly.

Some strength athletes think they are smart by skipping hitting the floor.

They do this because they think they keep more tension on the muscles.

But that's not how the deadlift works, and it's also dangerous for your back.

If your weights don't touch the floor, you're putting constant, the heavy strain on your back.

Do you want more tension in your muscles?

  • Then just raise the weights!

Deadlift Mistake #3: You Bounce Weights

Deadlifts bounce like a skippy ball.

In addition to making a racket at the gym, you're also cheating.

With the 'bounce' of the deadlift execution, you make it way too easy for yourself.

This way you take tension off your muscles.

In addition, deadlift bouncing increases your risk of a lower back injury because it makes it more difficult to keep your lower back neutral while performing the exercise.

So stop bouncing the weights and act normal.

Deadlift Mistake #4: Keeping Your Hips Too Low

No...deadlifting is not squatting.

Now don't think you're smart by keeping your hips low, just like when you squat.

If you're deadlifting with low hips, the bar will hit your shins as you lift the weight.

Trust me, this will make your shins blue.

Deadlift Mistake #5: You lean back too much

Leaning back too much is a mistake I see many advanced strength athletes make.

I too made this mistake for months when I just started bodybuilding.

Until one evening a fitness instructor decided to inform me that it would be better for my back if I didn't do that anymore.

Leaning back too much on top of the deadlift causes the discs in your lower back to squeeze together.

This can eventually cause serious back injuries such as a hernia.

It is much safer to keep your lower back in a neutral position.

Stop once your shoulders are past your hips at the top of the deadlift.

Deadlift Mistake #6: You touch your shins

It's normal to lightly touch your shins while deadlifting.

But if your shins are black and blue or even bleeding after deadlifting, you're doing something wrong.

During the deadlift exercise, always try to bring the bar over your legs to the top position without touching your shins.

The Right Deadlift Technique and Execution

The deadlift can be quite tricky for beginners to master as balance and coordination play an important role in performing the exercise.

The correct deadlift posture is extremely important for optimizing your training results and minimizing injuries.

The correct technique and execution of the deadlift are done as follows:

Every fitness exercise starts with the right posture:

  • Face the bar and stand with your feet about shoulder-width apart.
  • Now bend your knees until they are horizontal and grab the barbell with straight hands.
  • It is important that you make sure that your arms are slightly further apart than your legs and that you keep your back straight (so no round back!).
  • Tighten the abs and squeeze the buttocks to generate more energy for the first part of the exercise.
  • Now lift the bar by extending your legs. Once the bar reaches the height of your knees, explosively raise your upper body and extend your legs further.
  • Be careful not to lock your knees during this explosive movement. This is bad for your knee joints.
  • Once in the top position, hold the weight for a few seconds with your back straight.
  • Then slowly and controlled lower the barbell to the floor.

6 Additional Deadlift Tips

To get the most out of this great compound exercise, I'll give you some extra deadlift tips:

  • Always keep the chest out (not down) and the shoulders back.
  • The back should never bulge as this can lead to back injuries.
  • Keep your feet steadfast in the same place. Staggering forward or shifting your feet can cause you to lose balance.
  • Use straps to break platforms and lift heavier weights. With these straps, you keep enough grip while deadlifting.
  • During the exercise, look at a point directly in front of your face (not down).
  • Take plenty of rest between sets (at least 2 minutes).

The Normal Deadlift vs Sumo Deadlift

Ever heard of the sumo deadlift?

The sumo deadlift is different from the conventional deadlift in several areas.

The biggest difference is that the position of the feet and hands is different in the sumo deadlift, just like with a fat Japanese.

Because in the sumo deadlift the feet are further apart and the arms hang straight down, the lower back is less stressed.

In that respect, the sumo deadlift is much more like the squat, as it places more demands on the quadriceps.

Whether the sumo deadlift is more effective than the normal deadlift?

  • Sports scientists say no.

In the conventional deadlift, the weights are lifted over a large distance.

This means that the conventional deadlift stimulates more muscles than the sumo deadlift.

However, it certainly does not hurt to alternate the conventional deadlift with the sumo deadlift for a month or two.


Below you will find a training schedule for the back muscles (including the deadlift) for novice, intermediate and advanced strength athletes.

Deadlift Training Schedule Beginner

Deadlift Training Schedule Beginner

Deadlift Training Schedule Beginner

Deadlift Training Schedule Beginner

Deadlift Training Schedule Intermediate

Deadlift Training Schedule Intermediate

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