If you are into fitness and a regular gym goer, by now you must have been a friend to the deadlift! With the steep rise in popularity among fitness influencers, this exercise has become everyone’s favourite in no time. Taking social media by storm, the deadlift can now be seen performed by everyone to up their fitness game!
But, do they really work? Well, before we actually jump to the conclusion, let us tell you that it is one of the great exercises to perform to get a toned physique! Well, you now know why everyone is into this, right?
So, what are deadlifts in the first place? How are they better than squats? Can a beginner also follow this high-endurance workout routine? To get answers to all your questions, read our article on “the different types of deadlifts and how to do them “.
Deadlifting – A Popular Option To Tone Your Muscles
As the proverb goes, “if squats are the king of exercise, then deadlift is the queen”. Well, there is no definitive conclusion as to who is greater! While squats are a perfect option for beginners, deadlifts might not target the same.
So, what is a deadlift in simple words? While many still are of the view that both these forms of exercise are similar, the reality is far from being true! While squats work hips, core, and glutes in addition to quadriceps, the latter does not involve quadriceps!
Coming to the perfect definition of our topic, this high endurance activity follows the movement of our hips in the backward direction to lift a dead weight from the floor, which is generally a weighted barbell or kettlebell.
If strengthening your upper and lower body along with toning your muscles is your 2023 goal, you should never miss on the deadlifts! Perfect for building back and core strength, this high-strengthening activity will surely serve you a perfectly toned physique!
But, as they say, “Rome was not built in a day! “. So, consistency with dedication should be your key to achieving your dream body with deadlifts! If you are a beginner, don’t directly hop on this exercise. Start with low-intensity squats and slowly build your habit. If you have been in the fitness space for a longer time, it is better to create a customized workout routine for yourself to reap the maximum benefits of the drill!
Pro tip:- Be consistent with your workout. Also, it is beneficial to track your progress! Tracking will help you to visualize your progress which will motivate you to continue your sessions.
Benefits Of Deadlifts
A must in the fitness sphere, the deadlifts serve excellent fitness goals if performed properly! We have compiled a few excellent benefits of deadlifts in this section to help you understand better.
Trains The Hip Extensors
If working on your hip Extensors is your next goal, there can be no better exercise than deadlifts. The hip Extensors, namely the gluteus and the hamstring complex, are strengthened and toned with a regular deadlift session.
Provides Relief From Lower Back Pain
lower back pain has been a cause of severe concern among health experts. While certain medications can only reduce the severity of pain to some extent, proper workout training can actually destroy the root cause of the discomfort. Recent research claims that a proper deadlift, under a trained professional to avoid health risks, is the perfect option to alleviate lower back pain, especially among the middle-aged!
Works Your Core
Core strengthening is considered one of the ultimate goals of fitness training. While different medium-intensity drills such as squats provide you with a supercharged core, nothing can beat the deadlift when it comes to core strengthening.
Burns More Calories
Burning extra calories in your body comes free with deadlifts. The deadlifts work many different muscle groups on your body, which ultimately have a positive effect on weight loss!
Types Of Deadlifts To Try For A More Toned Physique
Are you also intrigued by all the deadlift workouts like kettlebell deadlifts or barbell deadlifts on the internet? Do you also want to build stronger muscles in the coming year? Not sure how and where to start? Well, we have got your back. This article will talk about all the different types of deadlift variations in depth to try this year for a more fit and healthy body. With that being said, let's roll the intro and dive deep into the topic!
1. Traditional Deadlift
As the name suggests, the deadlift is a form of exercise which works for different muscle groups in our body such as the hamstring, calves, glutes etc by lifting up dead weights from the ground. Easy peasy right? Well, the answer is no! While deadlifts are not impossible to do, still it would not be wrong to say that one needs a little bit of practice and consistency to become the master of the game.
How to do the Traditional Deadlifts?
- To start with your exercise, stand before your bar with your chest high and feet shoulder-width apart.
- Follow up the previous step by placing your feet tightly on the ground to create a balance. Distribute your body weight equally on both of your feet to create a stable foot position.
- To begin your movement, hinge from your hips and bend the same to reach your barbell.
- Follow with grabbing your equipment with an overhand grip by engaging your back muscles. Rotate your arms to expose your inner elbows to the front, keeping the hands aligned to the position of your feet.
- To change your movement, lift your hips back up until you feel a stretch on your legs.
- Now push your feet in the upward direction from the floor, keeping the barbell in close proximity to your body. To gain maximum benefits from this step, squeeze your glutes and move your hips forward.
- Again, bend downward with your hips hinged until the barbell reaches your knees. Now, lower your knees to keep the bar in its initial position.
- Take a break and restart your next repetition.
2. Romanian Deadlift
Whether your goals align with muscle strengthening or focusing on general health, the Romanian deadlift should be an important part of your workout routine. But why Romanian deadlift when you have the traditional one? Unlike conventional deadlifts, the Romanian deadlift does not ask for extra heavy Equipment. Additionally, beginners can also tune in to this exercise with much ease when compared to the former. When performed rightly, the Romanian Deadlift activates the adductors and core muscles to give a stronger back and knee.
How to do Romanian Deadlift?
- Setup Your Workout Space. When doing the Romanian deadlift, it is important to set up your workout space accordingly. First things first, keep your bar directly before you on the floor. Follow up with grabbing the equipment with a slightly wider than shoulder width. If you have a tall physique, consider a wider stance for maximum comfort.
- To begin with your movement, keep your lower body muscles and core muscles right to reap maximum benefits. Lift the bar up to till your standing position.
- Now focus on leaning forward while keeping your barbell close to your body. Maintain stability on your feet to avoid injury.
- To initiate the second half of the exercise, move your legs back to the ground by keeping your chest up and glutes squeezed. Bring your hips backwards close to the bar and return to the upright position.
3. Single Leg Romanian Deadlift
If you are bored with all the basic deadlifts and want something more thrilling and exciting to add to your workout session, trying the single-leg Romanian Deadlift should be next on your list. When done consistently, this less intense workout serves fitness goals like no other. If you are looking for the perfect exercise to up your muscle endurance and strength, this is your sign to try the single leg Romanian deadlift.
How to do a Single Leg Romanian Deadlift?
- To initiate the exercise, stand on one leg with proper balance on the other foot.
- Follow up the previous step by pushing your hips backwards ( much like a bilateral deadlift). You can keep your knees slightly bent to gain a better balance.
- While keeping your back flat, squeeze your Hamstring and return to the top. While in this position, squeeze your glutes hard to activate the muscles.
4. Sumo Deadlifts
If you have been in the fitness space for a long time, it is time to try the sumo deadlifts exercise to gain better results in a short time. Although it might seem difficult in the beginning, the sumo deadlift is considered one of the best weight lifting practices to gain a stronger body than ever!
How to do Sumo Deadlift?
- To start off with your exercise, press your feet into the ground and move your hips forward. Expand your knees and pull back your shoulders to balance everything.
- Now bring the bar in the downward direction, pause for a few seconds and pull it up again.
- While doing the movements, remain firm in your position. Keep your chest high with a neutral spine.
5. Trap Bar Deadlifts
While other deadlifts such as the sumo and the Romanian deadlifts have their own benefits when it comes to the best deadlift exercise-the trap bar deadlift snatches the trophy! From working the quadriceps, glutes and hamstring to lower back muscles, you get everything under one roof!
How to do Trap Bar Deadlift
- To start with the exercise, flip the barbell keeping the high handles up. Now step inside the void with a wider stance according to your comfort. Generally, a wider than shoulder-width stance is preferred.
- Now push yourself down and grab your equipment in the center for a better grip of the same.
- Now, push your hips down while keeping your chest high. Squeeze your legs and glutes to gain maximum balance. Now take a deep breath and hold it in.
- Now it’s time to pull up the weight. Once you have lifted to the topmost position, exhale!
- To end your first repetition, lower your weight while remaining straight and erect.
6. Stiff Leg Deadlifts
If the above-mentioned deadlifts are not your thing, we have something more on the list for you. The stiff leg deadlift is considered one of the best forms of a strength training exercise to gain a strong and attractive physique. Unlike its family members, the stiff leg deadlifts involve less bending of the knee, and thus focus on your glutes the most! When done accordingly, it activates the glutes, alongside the hamstrings to provide a toned body.
How to do Stiff Leg Deadlift
- Grab the barbell with an overhand grip by keeping your feet shoulder-width apart.
- Distribute your entire body weight on your feet by bending your knees. Now grip the floor with your feet to gain a better balance.
- Now hinge your hips and move the bar away from your body. Continue moving in a downward direction until your barbell moves closer to your knees.
- Now, begin moving upward by pulling the equipment closer to your body. Push your feet through the floor and squeeze your lower back muscles including your glutes. Maintain a neutral spine throughout the repetition.
7. Paused Deadlifts
Staple in athletic training, the paused deadlift bears a striking difference from the conventional deadlift in the fact that the performer needs to pause for a few seconds between the floor and the knees. When performed following exact guidelines, the paused deadlifts activate the glutes and lower back muscles, alongside the quadriceps, hamstring, adductors and forearms!
How to Pause Deadlift?
- At the beginning of the exercise, move closer to the bar until it is over the middle of your feet.
- To begin the movement, inhale and lean in the forward direction to grab the barbell with a proper grip.
- Now, hold your breath for a while and squeeze your core tight to lift the bar up efficiently.
- Pull the bar towards your body by standing erect and stiff. Keep your chin high and back straight.
- Now lower the bar to its initial position by bending your body towards the ground.
- Pause for a while and take a breath. Resume next repetition.
8. Deficit Deadlift
One of the advanced variations of the conventional deadlift, the deficit deadlift can be your best friend if you have gained a previous mastery in this field. Thus, the deficit deadlift, being extremely ruthless, should not be employed by beginners!
How to Deficit Deadlift
- Find an elevated surface for your exercise as deficit deadlifts ask for an elevated space to perform them. Choose such surfaces which have a height of 2-4 inches. Low wooden boxes, Metal 45 lb plates can be your best friend in this.
- Now, stand on your chosen elevated surface closer to the bar. Make sure that your deadlift is over the middle of your foot.
- Now move forward to grip the bar with your hands. Maintain a proper grip to avoid injuries.
- Now lift the bar by squeezing up your core muscles such as your glutes and hamstring.
- Follow up the above step by pulling the weight closer to your body. Keep your body straight and your chest high and stiff.
- To finish off with your exercise, lower the weight to its initial position. Take a break for a few seconds and repeat the above steps.
Tips And Tricks To Level Up Your Deadlift Exercise
If you are on the lookout for one perfect exercise to level up your muscle fitness, it has to be the deadlifts. As long as you are performing it correctly, there is no better exercise than deadlifts to strengthen your body and tone your muscles. But, most often, performers have low awareness about the exercise and thus end up doing the wrong techniques. Performing the exercise with the wrong technique increases the chances of further injuries.
To ease up your job, here we have compiled a few tips and tricks, along with the mistakes to avoid to level up your deadlift game.
- Look straight ahead when you lock out! To put it simply, when pulling up your weight, it is essential to tuck your chin inside, keeping your spine in a neutral position. Keep in mind to look straight when you achieve the lockout.
- Keep your arms straight throughout your deadlift exercise. Bending your arms can have negative effects on your biceps which can render you unable to exercise for the rest of your life. Remember to follow the guidelines properly when you perform deadlifts.
- Perform under a gym trainer if you are a beginner to the game of deadlifts. A personal trainer will look after all your mistakes and will ensure that you do not do this high-intensity exercise in the wrong way.
- Keep in mind not to work out with heavy weights when starting out. Work with light weights until you have gained mastery and skill with this high-intensity training.
- Do not place the bar too far from your body. Positioning the barbell too far away from yourself increases your chances of injuries. Keep your bar in close proximity to your body for maximum lifting efficiency.
- If you have just recovered from a leg or Lower back injury or are currently suffering from the same, make sure to consult with your doctor prior to incorporating this exercise into your fitness routine. Remember, not every workout is suitable for everyone. Make an informed decision to regret in future.
How Often Should You Deadlift?
One of the most asked questions when talking about deadlifts is how many times one should deadlift to gain greater strength and fitness. Can one perform them every day? How many times should the deadlift be performed in a week by a beginner?
While these questions seem exciting, the answers to them are not as straightforward as the questions. How often should one deadlift varies according to the individual. There is no one answer that fits all when it comes to strength training exercises!
When it comes to deadlifts, your experience in the field matters. If you are a beginner, it is best advised to incorporate them in your fitness regimen starting from once to thrice a week. Conversely, if you are a pro at deadlifting, you might consider deadlifting five to six times a week for better results.
Looking at the other side of that exercise, is it really necessary to deadlift every single day? Technically, the answer is yes. You can deadlift every day, given that the volume of your weight should be lesser. To put it simply, it is not at all necessary to lift weights every day. Thrice a week to 4x times a week is enough. But, if you are planning it on an everyday basis, make sure to work with lesser weights to avoid health risks!
Additionally, keep in mind to alter the weights, sets, repetitions, and types of deadlifts to gain maximum benefits from the same. For example- focus on working with high-volume weights with lower repetitions for day 1. For days 2, 3, and 4, work with lesser volume weights but with more repetitions. For days 5 and 6, you can focus on other exercises such as squats and planks to focus on other areas of your body.
One of the best ways to gain muscle strength and build strong legs is to incorporate deadlifts into your fitness regimen. But, make sure to perform under an expert to avoid health risks, if you are a beginner in this field. Make this exercise a part of your daily routine to build muscle mass and toned physique. Choose from the different variations and perform them accordingly to experience better results!