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3 Cues For A Better Barbell Deadlift

April 24, 2019

"Cue" noun A prompt or reminder said or done that serves as a signal to a weightlifter to improve performance. Here are three cues to help you solve common errors when performing the barbell deadlift.

1. Tuck Your Chin

It's common to see people deadlift with horrific neck posture; they're typically either looking at themselves in the mirror in front of them, or looking up at the ceiling. This puts your neck in a compromising position, pulls your spine out of a neutral position and makes it harder to keep your upper back tight. You want your neck and back to be perfectly inline, as if someone is holding a yard stick against your body from the back of your head to your underwear line. An easy cue to remember is to imagine you are trying to hold a tennis ball with your chin during the deadlift. This will keep your back posture inline and allow you to safely pull more weight.

 

2. Push the Earth Down

While pulling the bar up, imagine you are pushing the earth down with your legs. This forces you to drive your heels into the ground. By doing this, you will engage your legs (specifically your glutes and hamstrings) more which will you allow you to lift more weight. Remember, the deadlift is not solely a "back exercise". While it requires a strong back, it is a posterior chain exercise that requires force exertion from your entire back, glutes, hamstrings, etc.

 

3. Show Your Logo

The set up for a barbell deadlift is extremely important. Another way to help keep your back straight in neutral position begins with your set up. When you grab the bar and drop your butt, show your logo. This means if someone is standing in front of you, they should be able to see the chest logo on your shirt before you start pulling the bar.


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