7 Best Deadlift Exercises And Grips

7 Best Deadlift Exercises And Grips

The deadlift is the ultimate show of total body strength and it’s a very basic exercise. It isn’t a fad exercise like Tae Bo or pole dancing aerobics.

It is a straightforward, no nonsense kind of exercise that has been around for a very long time; and because the deadlift has been around for a long time, it shouldn’t be surprising that there have been numerous variations of the deadlift created.

In this article, we are going to talk about these different variations and how they can benefit you.

Sumo Deadlift

This deadlift is going to allow you to keep your torso more upright and apply more stress to the glutes, quads, and other muscles in the leg. To do the sumo deadlift, stand with your legs further apart than usual.

Woman doing a Sumo Deadlift.

Keep your back straight as you bend down and hold the bar with your hands placed inside of your legs. This deadlift may feel a little awkward at first, but like all things, it’ll feel more comfortable with practice.

Trap Bar Deadlift

The trap bar deadlift is a great variation because it takes the stress off of your back and puts it on your legs – much like the Sumo Deadlift. This deadlift variation is a blend between your traditional squat and a deadlift, so you’re getting the best of both workouts.

To do this work out, you will need access to a trap bar, which is a hexagonal bar that you can stand in the middle of. This will allow you to distribute the weight evenly by adjusting the way you are lifting.

Romanian Deadlift

The Romanian Deadlift (also referred to as the RDL) is a variation that focuses on the strength of your hamstrings instead of your back like other deadlift variations may do.

To do this deadlift, you want to keep your knees slightly bent (about at a 20 degree angle) and bend your hips while keeping your back straight. This is a great variation for those with weak knees or suffer from patella subluxation and other grips aren’t comfortable.

Dumbbell Deadlift

The Dumbbell Deadlift isn’t going to help you reach maximum strength or bulk up, but it is still a great exercise for the novice weightlifter. You can perform this exercise with many reps and they are great for building endurance for the muscles on the back half of your body.

Dumbbell Deadlift.

To do this deadlift, place a dumbbell in front of you and place a foot on either side. Bend your knees and reach for the top of the dumbbell and lift.

Deficit Deadlift

The Deficit Deadlift requires that you stand on top of something (generally a weight plate or a platform) and you bend over and lift a barbell. The idea behind this weight is to make your body spend more time lifting the weight for a longer distance. It is supposed to help your body feel more at ease when lifting heavier loads.

  • Note: This exercise isn’t really recommended if you are tall because you are more at risk of injury.

Block Deadlift

With this deadlift, it is the barbell that is on the block or platform – not you – making it the opposite of a deficit deadlift. Since you are putting the bar on a higher platform, you are decreasing the range of motion required for the lift, thus allowing you to lift heavier weights.

The goal for this exercise its to challenge your nervous system and strengthens the top half of your deadlift.

Snatch-Grip Deadlift

This deadlift is like the traditional deadlift, except that you are changing the way you grip the barbell. For this one, you will hold the bar with your hands far apart. This makes it more difficult for your back and traps to hold onto the bar and manage the weight.

You can increase the range of motion (you stand on a platform, or the barbell on a platform) so that it functions like the previous two variations.

Use Different Deadlift Grips To Change Everything!

The way you grip the barbell is going to have an impact on your exercise in numerous ways. Here are some of the most popular grips you can try.

Types of deadlift grips.

Overhand Grip

The overhand grip is requires you to grab the bar with your palms facing you and it is really going to test your grip strength. It’ll also increase the strength in your forearms too. This grip will allow you to keep the bar closer to your body, making it excellent for shoulder and upper-back workouts.

Mixed Grip

The mixed grip is where you grab the bar with the palm of one hand facing you and the palm of the other hand facing away from you. This is going to give you incredible grip strength, which will help prevent failing to lift heavier loads. Do keep in mind that you should use this grip at your own risk because you are more susceptible to arm injury and muscle imbalances.

Hook Grip

The hook grip is what the grip of choice among most powerlifters. You start with an overhand grip, but instead of putting your thumb on top of your fingers, you will put your fingers (namely the index finger and middle finger) on top of the thumb.

This grip gives you incredible grip strength without the risk of arm injury like with the mixed grip. It is important to note that this grip is going to hurt because it puts an incredible amount of pressure on the thumb. If you are attempting this grip for the first time, you would be better off if you wrap your thumb with athletic tape.

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