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The "Do You Even Deadlift" Clinic
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StrikeBack Offline
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RE: The "Do You Even Deadlift" Clinic
Cheers guys, appreciate the patience.

(04-13-2015 10:19 AM)Kieran Wrote:  Just a couple of questions if you don't mind, first of all could you touch on rounding the upper back? I was watching Andy Bolton pulling recently and he seems to be able to round the upper back while keeping a neutral lower back, but when I try, rounding the upper back seems to prevent me from being able to keep my lower back in a safe position.

There are two types of upper back rounding.

There's a specific technique to really round the upper back to shorten that lever, bring the hips closer to the bar and amplify abs and quads involvement. Think Bob Peoples, Vince Annello and Konstantin Konstantinov. I will not teach this technique, as it is very high risk high reward type specific to powerlifting competition, and very hard to perform safely. If you want to learn it, you need someone coaching you in person, not via the Internet.

And then there's a slight upper back rounding you get from pulling really heavy weights (inevitable). It can largely come from the heavy bar pulling the slack out of your lats, which gives the appearance of upper back rounding under load. It can look pretty bad if you make the mistake of pulling your shoulder blades back at the start of the pull. If you set up right, you can start with this slight rounding - it's akin to the rounding you get in a lats spread (bodybuilding pose) or the hollow body position - and maintain it through even a massive pull. This type of slight rounding is natural and safe to perform. I will elaborate on this in a later post tonight.

Quote:Also are there any fairly low volume singles programs that would be good for an intermediate? For an idea of where I'm currently at, I pulled from the floor the other day (had been pulling from blocks previously after an injury) for the first time in ages, and got up to 160 kg at around 70 kg bodyweight for a comfortable single. I'm currently running 531 and only doing the prescribed reps (no AMRAP sets as I feel like I let my form slip if I push too hard), but I really hate deadlifting for reps, and much prefer singles.

Ah, I have just the right stuff for you, as I in fact train 5/3/1 (have done so for the last couple of cycles) for my deadlift, both styles (twice a week).

How I do it:

For most of the training cycle (all the prep blocks, think about 9 weeks out of 12):

5/3/1 work set (1 top set, usually just 1 more rep than the prescribe)
No drop set
Straight to the primary assistant exercise.
Then do secondary assistant exercises.

For conventional deadlift, I use the Stiff Leg Deadlift, usually 3x8, increasing weekly.

For sumo deadlift, I use front squats, or paused low bar squats, for 2 to 3x5.

In the last 3 weeks before competition (comp block), I'd do a few drop sets with x2 or x3 reps, and 5-10% weight off the bar, and also take the assistant exercises off the menu. This is simply to work on specificity for my sport skills.

I've trained with low volume on the main deadlift (sumo or conventional) for a while now. Before 5/3/1, I used to do The Rule of 10 from Easy Strength (Pavel + Dan John) for my deadlift e.g working up to 2x5, 5x2, 3x3 or 6x1. Due to being built not that great for deadlift, I don't want to do too much volume, but build my strength via other exercises instead:

- lots of squatting
- deadlift variations using light weights
- heavy KB swings (I'd do 3-5 sets of 20-25 reps with the 40 to 48kg KB)
- lots of abs work (Ab wheel rollouts, hollow body position)
- upper back work: pullups, rows (barbell and cable), lat pulldowns
- barbell hip thrusts

You can pick any that suits you, as long as it addresses your weaknesses. Work hard on them, as that's where you build strength, primarily. Use the actual deadlift (conventional or sumo or both) as a skill practice and demonstration of strength, and always leave some in the tank in every set. e.g do 3 reps although you can probably do 5 if you go all out.

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04-14-2015 02:29 AM
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RE: The "Do You Even Deadlift" Clinic - StrikeBack - 04-14-2015 02:29 AM

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