Deadlift with Proper Form: Ultimate Guide to Deadlifting

From this article, you will find almost everything about deadlift effects, posture, weight, and frequency.


Read through from start to finish and you will find essential information about deadlifts.

You can also click the table of contents below to solve specific questions about deadlift.

What is a deadlift?


Deadlift is understood immediately when you understand'dead' and'lift'.

Dead means'weight dead on the floor'.

Originally, Dead means'dead state'. When talking about deadlift, it makes sense like the explanation above.

Lift means'lift up'.

So,'Lifting dead weights (barbells, dumbbells, etc.) up on the floor is a deadlift.

Usually, it is expressed as a deadlift when lifting a bar (barbell) that is longer than a dumbbell (dumbbell).

Also, when performing a deadlift with a dumbbell, it is referred to separately as'Dumbell Deadlift'.

Misconception about deadlift

Before we dive into the details of deadlift, let's talk a little bit about the misconceptions that many people think of.

Deadlift is a back exercise?

Deadlift is a lats exercise?

Deadlift is a back exercise?

You must have heard a lot of these stories.

Why did this story come up?

To understand this, you must first know the reality of Korean gyms.

First of all, because most of them are located on the upper floors, it is impossible to do convention deadlifts (ground dead, dead dead).

It's because of the floor noise and reverberation.

So, even the trainers have an atmosphere of refraining from as much as possible, and even when teaching, they will tell you the Romanian deadlift (movement starting from top to bottom) first.

Since Romanian deadlift is relatively more involved in the back than conventional deadlift (ground dead), it has been influenced by the words that deadlift is a lower back exercise and a back exercise.

More precisely, deadlift is not a back exercise, but a rear chain (a collection of muscles in the back of the body) that is close to a full body exercise that uses about 70% of the muscles of our body.

Typically, the muscles of the hips, the back of the thigh, and the front of the thigh are used.

Of course, the back and lats, forearms, etc. are clearly exercised.

It mainly uses the muscles of the back of the body, but since it also uses muscles from other parts of the body, it was referred to as'rear chain movement close to the whole body movement'.

Deadlift posture

데드리프트 자세

We will show you a safe and strong lifting posture.

The reason why the deadlift position is confusing isn't actually because of lack of knowledge.

This is because when we talk about a certain exercise posture in many places, we have learned the information,'Do this, do that.' This makes our minds confused.

Is it better to bend it? Do you like to bloom? Should I bend more? Should I spread more?

Countless thoughts confuse you.

So, you need to clearly understand'why you should hold such a posture' so that you can achieve the effect that suits your purpose with a proper deadlift posture.

Posture - waist

Stretching your back too much is not good for deadlifts!

데드리프트 자세 - 허리

It is not good to bend your back forward, but it is not good to stretch your back too much.

If the back is stretched too far, the pelvis is inclined forward and the lower back is bent excessively, which puts a lot of pressure on the lower back, which can cause back pain.

Rather, it is better to keep the waist straight rather than excessively straightening the waist.

Also, if we lift more than 90% of 1RM, the waist will naturally bend forward even at 0.1cm.

This does not mean that you will be injured unconditionally by bending your back.

When you give your stomach strength as if you are poop, the stomach fills up with'abdominal pressure', which acts as a back cushion.

The more power you give to your stomach, the stronger the cushion will be.

Think of it as a powerful balloon or pillow that doesn't burst under your waist.

Making this balloon'abdominal pressure' is more important than straightening your back.

That way, there is less strain on the waist and the pressure on the stomach can reduce the weight burden on the waist.

So it's important to keep your back straight when doing the actual deadlift, but paying attention to the pressure on your stomach (the state that your abdominal pressure is kept tight enough) is the secret to better avoiding the risk of injury.

We will discuss abdominal pressure in more detail in the'Deadlift Breathing Method' below.

Summary: Of course, it is good to straighten the waist, but it is more important to relieve the burden on the lower back by forming'abdominal pressure' in the stomach, which is more important than the waist blooming!

If you are a powerlifter, not a beginner or a fitness person exercising for health, it is helpful to bend your back a little.

Please refer to the video below for details on this part.

Rather, by bending the upper part of the waist, it activates the lats more and reduces the range of motion, allowing you to lift heavier weights.

Of course, it is not recommended because it can be a problem for beginners to follow quickly.

If you are a powerlifter who needs to lift a lot of weight, you can refer to the posture of your back through the video above.

Of course, this posture is not recommended for most general people and fitness people who have enough weight for health.

Posture - Latissimus dorsi

This is a very important muscle in preventing back injuries, so be sure to read it!

데드리프트 자세 - 광배근(활배근)

If you do not activate the lats during deadlift, the upper and center of the back may be rounded (bent forward, bent back, and bent back).

So it's a very important muscle to keep your back straight to prevent injury.

It is especially good to go down while maintaining tension from the standing position to start the deadlift to the position where you bend and hold the grip.

If you go down too quickly, the tension you were conscious of in your lats is released, so you slowly go down at a speed that does not relax.

And even when holding the grip, it keeps the tension conscious of the lats.

That way, your back won't round when you lift, and you can lift the weight with a straight waist.

It's very simple to keep your lats conscious and tense.

First, pull the scapula back.

Imagine having a ballpoint pen in the center of the back of our body relative to our shoulders and trying to grab it with our shoulders as much as possible. Can you imagine?

Then, while holding the ballpoint pen, imagine trying to squeeze your shoulders firmly into the back of your pocket and try to get it down as far as possible.

This will stably activate the lats.

This deadlift is safer by preventing your back from bending.

Posture - Grip

Here is a brief introduction to the appropriate grip width and characteristics of each type.

데드리프트 자세 - 그립

If the grip is narrow, the balance on both sides may be broken.

Instead, when you deadlift a sumo, you can lift more weight as the grip is narrower than a normal deadlift (conventional).

If you hold it too wide, you will have to bend your back too downward, so if you have short hamstring muscles, the lower back may bend forward.

Also, if you want to improve your grip more, the overgrip is more effective than the hookgrip.

You can lift more weight with the Alternate Grip. Of course the balance can be broken.

For reference, if you use a hex bar (trap bar), the place where you hold the grip with your hand is the side rather than the front.

Even this amount of adjustment can help relieve upper body stress.

This can be understood in common sense rather than principle.

When lifting an object on the floor, it is more comfortable to lift an object closer to the body than to lift an object farther from the body.

Likewise for deadlifts, holding the side with a trap bar is the effect of lifting objects closer to our body than holding the barbell in front, so it puts less strain on the waist.

Posture - Shoulder

Keep the barbell and shoulder blades straight so you can lift more weight safely!

데드리프트 자세 - 어깨, 견갑골

If the scapula is behind the barbell, the hips sometimes go down the knee.

This causes the knee to protrude forward.

Of course, this is a little exaggerated, uncommon situation, but I've expanded it to help you understand.

So, when you lift the barbell, you don't lift it in a straight line and you lift the barbell forward+upwards to avoid hitting your knees, and then lift the barbell upward+backward through your knees.

With heavy weights, the barbell may stagger back and forth, causing your body to lose balance.

Conversely, if the scapula is too in front of the barbell, the barbell moves forward while lifting the barbell and lifts upwards.

So the best posture is to lower your torso and hips so that it is perpendicular to your shoulder blades on the barbell before starting.

Lower your torso and hips, allowing your shoulder blades to be vertically positioned on the barbell.

And if you lower your hips while you are almost completely down, the scapula moves relatively backward, and if you lean forward, the scapula moves forward.

You can finely adjust the motion of lowering the hips and bending the torso forward so that the scapula is positioned vertically above the barbell when holding the barbell with your hand.

And the position of the barbell is about 2cm away from the shin.

With this adjustment, depending on the length of your torso, thighs, and arms, some people have high hips, while others have a nearly horizontal back.

Fine. Depending on the person's body shape, the original hip height and back angle vary.

If someone doesn't consider the person's body shape and says,'It's not a squat, raise your ass quickly!'

If the torso length is relatively short and the thigh length is relatively long, the back is almost horizontal and the hip height is raised.

In this way, you need to adjust the hip height and the angle of the back to suit your body shape, and ultimately aim to lie on the'vertical line of the shoulder blade and barbell'.

Otherwise, if the barbell is too far away from your shin, your shoulders will be unnecessarily involved when lifting, and you will tire quickly, causing the other agonists to wear out faster before they run out of energy.

Conversely, if the hip height is too low and the waist height is so high that the barbell is in full contact with the shin and the arm is protruding further in front of the scapula, the barbell will not move vertically and use unnecessary energy.

It moves slightly forward until the knee and lifts it up, then pulls it towards the body as it passes the knee and rises up, so it uses unnecessary energy.

The barbell should come up straight to avoid using unnecessary energy.

So it is very important to keep the barbell and shoulder blades straight and then raise the barbell.


Keep the barbell close to your shin to avoid unnecessary muscle involvement!

데드리프트 자세 - 정강이와 바벨 간격

The barbell should be in the center of the foot before starting the deadlift.

You should start with a barbell about 2 cm from your shin.

If you put it in close contact with the shank, it may rub when lifting it up.

Conversely, if the barbell is too far away from your shin, your entire arm will lean forward, putting additional load on your back to support it, and unnecessary shoulder muscles.

So there is a high probability that the back cannot stand and the top of the back is rounded forward.

So it's a good idea to start deadlifting with a barbell about 2 cm from your shin.

Deadlift effect

Overall muscle growth effect! Improve cardiovascular function!

데드리프트 효과

Testosterone and growth hormone levels increase.

Testosterone is a hormone responsible for muscle recovery and the growth of additional muscle tissue.

To increase this hormone, you need to lift at least 75% of 1RM (the weight you can lift at a time).

It is difficult to stimulate testosterone production with a low weight, high repetition set.

And by shortening your rest period to less than 90 seconds and doing a deadlift, you can stimulate more growth hormone production.

Of course, if you can't recover from this amount of time, we recommend taking a longer break.

It is also said that taking the time between deadlift sets shorter than 5 minutes can suppress cortisol levels while producing more growth hormone. [Source]

It is also said that cardiovascular function can be improved if you exercise by repeating the deadlift more than 10 times.

Deadlift stimulation part

Deadlift does not only stimulate the back muscles.

데드리프트 자극부위

The deadlift effect is not the main development of the back muscles.

Many people say that'deadlifting is an exercise to eat your back...' but it is not.

This exercise uses the muscles of the back, not the front of the body, and mainly uses glutes and hamstrings based on the stability of the core and back muscles.

In the original deadlift, the main target is not the back, but the hip muscles (gluteus, gluteus maximus) and hamstring (back of the thigh) muscles.

The back is not primarily a moving muscle, but a role that supports, supports, and supports the hips and hamstrings for exercise.

A common deadlift starting from the ground can stimulate the hip muscles (gluteus, gluteus maximus), hamstring (back muscle of the thigh), erect muscle, and quadriceps (anterior thigh muscle).

On the other hand, Romanian deadlift and lagpool have a slightly different effect than normal deadlift.

When the barbell is lowered and raised only to the knee level, the quadriceps head (anterior thigh muscle) is rarely used.

It is mainly used for glutes (hip side), hamstring (back of thigh), and erect muscles.

Among them, the glutes and hamstrings are used more than the erect muscles.

Then you will have these questions.

No, my back hurts even with a Romanian deadlift?

Yes, the reason is not because the back muscles are used more than the glutes and hamstrings, but because the upper body muscles are relatively weakly developed compared to the lower body muscles, so the group comes first.

Especially in the beginning, muscle pain may come first in the lower back.

If you're really in the right posture and you don't have a problem, your back may not be strong enough to handle the weight yet.

This problem is more and more irritating to the glutes and hamstrings, and you will feel the pressure coming after a long deadlift.

Or maybe it's because you don't know how to give strength to your hips and hamstrings.

In this case, one of the solutions is to do not focus on the waist when going down and then rise up during the deadlift motion, but only being aware of the hips, thinking that the hips are pushed forward rather than upwards, and pushed straight.

With just this practice, you can quickly feel how to give strength to your hips.

And when you first practice, you can quickly learn how to give strength to your hips and hamstrings, not your back, if you practice while conscious of whether the power is continually entering your hips while slowly performing the upward motion.

Deadlift breathing method

Introducing deadlift breathing to help prevent back pain and lift more weight.

데드리프트 호흡 방법

Proper use of the deadlift breathing method can help prevent back pain and help you lift more weight.

As for the way of breathing, it is not simply the order of inhalation and exhalation.

It can be a bit long and a bit boring, but reading it through will surely help you reduce the risk of back injuries when doing deadlifts as well as other exercises and activities in the future and help you gain healthier and stronger weights! Please pay attention and read carefully.

Breathing using'intra-abdominal pressure' is a breathing method that prevents deadlift back pain and supports the spine more firmly.

Let's talk briefly about the principle.

It might be easier to understand if you take a PET bottle as an example (of course it's not exactly the same mechanism, but I'll explain it to help you understand).

What if I put a heavy dumbbell on the PET bottle with the lid open?

Of course it will be crushed.

But let's assume that the air is in the PET bottle by injecting air into the PET bottle like a tire, and immediately closing the lid.

And what if you put dumbbells on the PET bottle? It will crush, but it will crush less.

Otherwise, the air may be very thick and not distorted at all.

And when you open the lid of the PET bottle again, the wind will blow out at once and the PET bottle will quickly crush.

You may have been embarrassed by suddenly talking about PET bottles.

Think of the PET bottle as your waist, and suppose that the air in it is'intra-abdominal pressure' (the pressure of the air filled in your stomach).

Then, the more air you fill in the PET bottle, the less it will crush.

Our waists are not exactly the same, but they are similar.

The pressure in the abdominal cavity supports the weight that the lower back has to support.

So, the tighter the pressure in the abdominal cavity, the less the burden on the lower back will be.

So, to reduce back pain, it's safer to stay conscious of the pressure in your abdominal cavity while doing a deadlift, rather than keeping your back straight.

In fact, not all of them, but most of them will bend the lower back forward even if it reaches more than 90% of 1RM (maximum weight that can be lifted only once), even 0.1mm.

So if you ask, does this slightly curved back cause back pain?

Rather, a state where the back is slightly bent forward and the pressure in the abdominal cavity is kept tight, and the pressure in the abdominal cavity is lower than the state where the pressure in the abdominal cavity is low while the waist is straight. (Of course, it can be a problem if your back is'excessively' tilted back or front.)

So how do you increase the pressure in the abdominal cavity (the pressure in the stomach)?

There are different points to be careful about when you exhale and when you inhale, so I will explain them separately.

Once you exhale, the pressure in your abdominal cavity is relieved. It's like getting air out of a PET bottle.

So, because I can't maintain the pressure in the abdominal cavity, I tell you to breathe after completing the deadlift.

Hold your breath at all while in motion.

However, this can cause insufficient oxygen supply to the brain, causing the head to spin.

So it's good to breathe. Then it looks like a dilemma.

If you exhale during movement, you cannot maintain the pressure in the abdominal cavity. When you hold your breath, oxygen supply is not smooth,

But actually, this is not a big problem.

When we exhale, we consciously push the stomach inward and do not let go of the force, but we just need to hold on by giving strength to the core.

Core refers to the four muscles that exist in your torso.

Applying force to this core creates pressure in the abdominal cavity.

This will reduce the burden on your back.

So how do you give the core strength?

There are two ways.

The core is the part of the stomach where the power enters when you give it power like a poop.

And if I think someone is hitting my stomach, then I'll give it power to protect it, and that's what powers the core.

You will probably feel that it is different from the power you give to make the Six Pack.

It feels different from the feeling of putting the belly button on the waist.

Rather, the feeling of flattening the stomach rather than the feeling of a six-pack, swelling up to the front and sides of the stomach and slightly to the back of the stomach can be felt by touching it with your hands.

Applying this force to your core allows you to maintain pressure in your abdominal cavity while exhaling.

So, when you do the deadlift, you can perform the deadlift while maintaining the pressure in the abdominal cavity by exhaling and pooping.

The same is true when you inhale.

If you give your stomach a lot of strength as if you are pooping, you can lower the burden on your back by giving strength to your core both when you inhale and when you exhale.

And the thing to watch out for when inhaling is not to raise your shoulders.

As the shoulder rises, the diaphragm rises up, reducing pressure in the abdominal cavity.

It's like opening the lid of a PET bottle.

Another thing to note is that you don't stick out your stomach when you inhale.

Protruding your stomach, like lifting your shoulders, reduces the pressure in your abdominal cavity.

The same amount of air comes in, but as the space increases upward or forward, of course, the pressure decreases.

So when you inhale, don't raise your shoulders, don't stick out your stomach, and inhale with the feeling of pushing the back of your back while you're poop, you can maximize the pressure in your abdominal cavity.

This can greatly reduce the burden on the lower back.

Just like a flat tire filled with air, the air filled with air in an open PET bottle and the lid closed.

Did you understand so far?

To help you understand, here is a brief summary.

The breathing method that applies pressure in the abdominal cavity reduces the burden on the lower back.

To increase the pressure in the abdominal cavity, when exhaling or inhaling, do not raise your shoulders, do not push your stomach forward with a feeling of poop, and breathe with the feeling of pushing behind your back.

In this way, the pressure in the abdominal cavity is weakened due to the loss of air when inhaling, which is naturally replaced with ``strengthening the core (strengthening with the feeling of pooping)'', and the pressure in the abdominal cavity is strong for both inhalation and exhalation. Can be maintained.

Please remember this!

If you have back pain, pay more attention to the pressure in your abdominal cavity than excessive back and back tilt. (Of course the waist date is important!)

Especially for those who continue to feel back pain even after making a back date, it will help to improve back pain if you put all your energy into the pressure in the abdominal cavity.

Deadlift type

데드리프트 종류

Depending on the type of deadlift, the stimulation site may be relatively different.

Conventional deadlift

컨벤셔널 데드리프트

The most common deadlift is called conventional deadlift.

This is an action of holding the barbell (long bar) on the floor with your hand and lifting it up.

The characteristic of the posture is that the leg is placed between the arms and the lower back is bent to lift the posture, which is the conventional deadlift.

Romanian deadlift

루마니안 데드리프트

Romanian deadlift has a slightly different effect from normal deadlift (conventional).

When the barbell is lowered and raised only to the knee level, the quadriceps head (anterior thigh muscle) is rarely used.

It is mainly used for glutes (hip side), hamstring (back of thigh), and erect muscles.

Among them, the glutes and hamstrings are used much more than the erect muscles.

No, my back hurts even with a Romanian deadlift?

Yes, there are many reasons for that.

One of the main reasons is not because the back muscles are used more than the glutes and hamstrings, but because the upper body muscles are relatively weakly developed compared to the lower body muscles, so the group comes first.

Especially in the early stages, your back may hurt.

If you're really in the right posture and you don't have a problem, your back may not be strong enough to handle the weight yet.

This problem is more and more irritating to the glutes and hamstrings, and you will feel the pressure coming after a long deadlift.

Sumo deadlift

스모 데드리프트

Sumo deadlift is a position where both arms are placed inside between the legs as opposed to conventional deadlifts.

It is often performed when flexibility is limited and it is difficult to perform conventional deadlifting.

They also do sumo deadlifting when someone with long legs wants to perform the deadlift at full range of motion.

Which deadlift is better to choose?

데드리프트 종류별 고르는 법

Conventional deadlifts have their torso tilted forward compared to subordinate deadlifts.

So the vertebral erection muscles do relatively more.

And the glutes are relatively less involved. (Of course, the glutes are the most involved muscles. This is a relative comparison.)

On the other hand, in the Sumo posture, the weight is lifted with the waist upright.

So, the burden on the waist is less.

Instead, the degree of activation of the glutes (hip muscles) is relatively higher compared to the conventional deadlift.

So, if your back is weak and your glutes are strong, you may have better stance.

Deadlift & Waist

We'll show you how to relieve back muscle pain or pain while deadlifting.

Deadlift back muscle pain causes

There are three main causes of back muscle pain and injury.

1st cause of back muscle pain: supermodel posture (duck hip)

데드리프트 허리 근육통 - 오리 엉덩이

This is because of the motion of lifting the weight and putting out the chest'excessive' and pulling the hips out excessively.

This motion creates an excessive arch under the waist, which puts more gravity under the waist and strains it.

The solution is to try to push your hips forward when you get up, which will help prevent your back from overextending as your lower body is more involved.

Then, in the motion of standing up and finishing, the two assholes are completely tightened.

When you try to put up with the shit, you give strong strength to your ass, right? Just give it that strength.

If you put a barbell on your body while your ass is pecked, it will help to prevent the supermodel posture.

And breathing is also helpful, and through the breathing method that fills the pressure in the abdominal cavity mentioned above, it helps to prevent hyperextension that causes the back to recline too much and helps to straighten the waist.

Quick summary

  • Attach a barbell to your body while pecking your ass in the standing up and finishing motion.
  • Instead of raising your hips up, move it from the back to the front.
  • Let go of the compulsion to straighten your chest.
  • After lifting everything, let go of the compulsion to give something more strength.
  • Maintain a breathing method that fills the pressure in the abdominal cavity

Secondary cause of back muscle pain: excessive weight

데드리프트 허리 근육통 원인 - 무게

When our body reaches about 90% of 1RM (the maximum weight that I can only lift once), the strength comes and the waist is inevitably bent even 0.1mm in the future.

It's a case of being bent a little while using the strength of the waist inevitably.

Abdominal pressure, lats, hamstrings, or glutes may not hold up, causing excessive pressure on the bent back.

So no matter how strong your abdominal pressure is, if your back is bent, it is safe to lower the weight a little.

3rd cause of back muscle pain: lifting the lower back first when ascending

When it comes up, it does not lift it with the hips, but raises the lower back with the lower back muscles first, which puts a greater load on the lower back.

In particular, when raising the weight, the head is tilted back and the lower back is more involved when it goes up.

4th cause of back muscle pain: the movement of lifting the shoulders back after rising

If you perform the motion of tilting your shoulders back after it has come up, it puts unnecessary loads that can cause back injury.

In particular, it puts a great strain on the lower back (lumbar) and can lead to injury.

Precautions for alleviating back muscle pain

데드리프트 허리 근육통 완화 위한 주의사항

In the case of back muscle pain, the lower back may be bent too forward, causing strain on the lower back.

Conversely, it may be caused by excessive stretching of the waist.

If you suffer from back muscle pain in the beginning of your workout, it may be due to using muscles that you don't use rather than posture.

In this case, it is recommended to remove all the weight and hold only the barbell (empty bar) and practice the posture enough before adding weight little by little.

If you increase the weight at once, you will be exercising in a collapsed position, so there is a high probability of severe muscle pain or injury due to the wrong posture on the weakened muscles.

Deadlift Frequently Asked Questions

# Why is the lats more irritating?

There can be several causes.

The lats are relatively weak, so the role of the stabilizing muscle alone may be a lot of stimulation.

The lats may have been more involved by deadlifting with the upper body shifting forward a lot and pulling the bar a lot toward the body.

# How deep is the hips good?

Each person has a different body shape, so the optimal posture is all different.

Some people need to have a low hip height, some people need a high hip height.

It all depends on the length of your arms, your torso and your legs.

Just because your hips are low doesn't mean it's all bad. You must see that person's body type.

Deadlift terms

What is a hamstring?

It refers to the group of all muscles in the back of the thigh.

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