The barbell deadlift is a very effective full body compound exercise which works the legs, back and core muscles. Now, the deadlift is not a simple exercise so it’s always recommended that beginners practice proper form with only the barbell or very lightweight before training heavy.
But when you’re more advanced, you can reap the most benefit by maximally loading the barbell to stimulate the target muscle groups. The deadlift is one of the big compound full body movements which is utilized for maximizing strength and muscle mass so many people include it, or its variations in their workout routine for huge gains!
In This Exercise:
- Target Muscle Groups: Quadriceps, Hamstrings, Glutes
- Type: Strength
- Mechanics: Compound
- Equipment: Barbell
- Difficulty: Intermediate
- Place a barbell on the floor and load it with the desired amount of weight.
- Then, stand with a wider than shoulder-width stance so your shins are touching the barbell.
- Now, bend down and grab the barbell with a slightly wider than shoulder-width grip. Keep your torso straight and slightly above parallel to the floor. Your upper legs should also be slightly above parallel to the floor.
- Then, push upward through your heels and midfoot while you pull the barbell at the same time. Thrust your hips forward when you reach the middle portion of the deadlift to complete the lift. Exhale during this portion of the exercise.
- Slowly lower the barbell back down until it touches the floor and inhales.
- Repeat for the desired number of reps.
Variations & Tips:
- There are several variations to the deadlift which includes the dumbbell deadlift, hex bar deadlift, Smith machine deadlift, Sumo deadlift, and the Romanian deadlift. These are the most popular variations.
- Thrust your hips forward when you reach the middle portion of the deadlift to complete the lift effectively.
- Your torso and upper legs should always be slightly above parallel to the floor.
- Keep the bar as close to your body as possible to reduce stress on the machine and to make the exercise more efficient.
- The deadlift is one of the very few exercises where you can maximally load the barbell and safely perform the lift if you have proper form.
- The deadlift works the entire posterior chain (Backside of the body) of muscles, in addition to your core muscles.
Watch: How to do the barbell deadlift
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