Posted May 15, 2012

75 Ways Deadlifting Just Plain Rocks

I loves me some deadlifts. They drive me in my training as one of my main staples of almost each and every workout. In one way or another, I’m pretty much working towards lifting greater and greater amounts of weight without snapping my back in half. They get me jacked in a way very few things other than the thought of steak, mowing my lawn, or watching Roadhouse on late-night television can accomplish, which is saying a lot.

I need more deadlifting like I need more cowbell. Nobody puts baby in the corner, primarily because they don’t know how to deadlift. If they knew, she would go to that corner.

She would get put right the hell in that corner.

We could start trending “replace movie one-liners with “deadlifts”‘ all day long, and I would be all over it like stink on a monkey.

For these reasons, but not limited to these reasons alone, I wanted to compile a listing of the top reasons you should include deadlifts in your daily repertoire if you currently don’t. They range from the ludicrous (of course) to the logical (yup) to the purely egocentric (you knew that was coming). Enjoy!!

1. Most back pain comes from weak glutes. The best glute exercises is and will always be deadlifts.

2. Most back pain also comes from weak spinal erectors that cannot maintain a specific position. Deadlifts train the spine to remain stable while exposed to stupidly high shear forces, and thus making you Superman.

3. Chicks dig guys with strong powerful glutes

4. Guys dig chicks with strong powerful glutes

5. (Some) guys dig guys with strong powerful glutes

6. (Way more) chicks dig chicks with strong powerful glutes

7. Deadlifts are a total body exercise, working muscles from your toenails to your hair follicles.

8. It gives short guys a way to feel superior to tall guys.

9. It gives tall guys another reason to hate short guys.

10. No matter how many times you’ve done it, you can always do it better.

11. 2 words: Zercher Deadlifts

12. Very few people qualify to be able to do a deadlift as the required mobility from the hips, thoracic spine and ankles is incredibly high.

13. This means I’ll be kept busy for a very long time teaching and fixing people who pull stuff like this.

14. Your testosterone will spike with each 1 rep max, roughly 13246% your regular walking around levels, which means you’ll be more likely to impregnate casual observers with nothing more than an icy stare, disrupt gang fights with your mere presence, and become the next supplier of Red Bull by bottling your urine.

15. Squats don’t have the same effect on the scapula and rotator cuff in terms of their stability and ability to withstand distraction forces. This makes deadlifting a great rotator cuff exercise, while requiring a lot from the lower body.

16. The most enjoyable things in life require triple extension from the hips, knees and ankles. In the most pure form, we could say deadlifts are Darwinian, rewarding those who have exceeded in developing strong hip extension capacity.

17. The endorphin release from 1 rep of deadlifts is on par with runner’s high, meaning you can get the same fix with 1/100 the amount of time investment, and you can wear way cooler clothes too.

18. I would argue with anyone that your lats are the most important muscle group in your body. Deadlifts work the hell out of them in multiple planes.

19. Every athlete can improve at almost every dimension of their sport by becoming better at deadlifting.

20. “My back is weak/sore” is a reason to do deadlifts, not a reason to avoid them.

21. No crunch could train the abs to work as hard or to become as hypertrophied as learning how to breathe and brace for a max pull.

22. Your back doesn’t look like this:

23. Admit it, you just pooped yourself a little when you saw his lats and erector spinae, didn’t you??

24. Don’t worry bro, I did too.

25. Side bar: imagine kipping deadlifts.

26. Every pushing movement requires hip extension, whether you believe it or not. Hence deadlifting can increase your bench press.

27. Women can deliver babies easier by having control of the creation of intraabdominal pressure, a strong pelvic floor, and can survive the rigours of delivery with fewer soft tissue injuries by having a strong deadlift prior to third trimester, and those who are very strong prior to conception will likely deliver a baby that slaps the hell out of the doctor and changes their own diapers. That’s science.

28. Your mom likes it when you deadlift.

29. Your mom LOOOOVES it when I deadlift.

30. No matter how awesome you think you are, you need to deadlift with chains.

31. No matter how much you deny it, your nipples probably got hard watching that last video.

32. I’m looking at you, Gentilcore.

33. Growth hormone release is at its’ highest following maximal resistance training exercise that encompasses the greatest amount of muscle mass.

34. If you’re a guy who has trouble adding muscle, heavy deadlifts will help you out due to the testosterone and growth hormone alterations, which play on muscle hypertrophy.

35. Sorry ladies, you don’t have enough testosterone to get big from doing heavy deadlifts alone. Female body builders need a lot more than heavy deadlits to gain size.

36. Females won’t get “bulky” from lifting heavy things. Here’s the proof.

37. Bruce Lee did deadlifts with Franco Columbu. Chuck Norris did the Total Gym with Christie Brinkley. That is why Chuck Norris is now a series of jokes, and why Bruce Lee is no joke.

38. If you use straps, you might as well extend your pinky. “Oh you fancy, huh!!??”

39. Chalk works best for outlines.

40. Kim Kardashian went to Gunnar Peterson. He said she had to do deadlifts. Then she went to Tracy Anderson. She said she didn’t have to do deadlifts. At that very point in time her series was renewed on television. Hence, deadlifts could have saved us from another season of “Keeping up with the Kardashians.” Their reach is large.

41. Short lifters can develop more strength due to higher degrees of torque through shorter levers, whereas taller lifters can develop more velocity due to higher bar speeds at the same relative speed if measured in degrees per second at the hip joint, due to their longer levers.

42. Chicks dig long levers.

43. Marathon runners need to do deadlifts to develop a kick and to improve velocity, efficiency, stride length, and sprinting power, all things important to running fast and to make your body more efficient.

44. Biceps are incredibly active during deadlifts, as they keep your elbow from distracting itself apart, and provide anterior shoulder stability. If you want arms, lift something heavy.

45. Deadlifting helps you poop better.

46. You want to poop better.

47. Trust me.

48. The development of intra-abdominal pressure helps train pelvic floor muscles and stimulate the colon to produce peristaltic wave contractions, which helps you to poop. Told you.

49. Power and strength are the two defining characteristics that, when lost, determine function on old age. Losing power and strength limits your ability to do everything, from standing and sitting on the toilet to getting in and out of a car, to climbing stairs, and even breathing. Heavy deadlifts, when done properly, can help retain and even gain strength and power through the entire body, which improves functional outcome measures in old age, which promotes independence.

50. It’s totally more functional than anything you could ever hope to do on a bosu.

51. Unless you could find a way to pull a max weight deadlift on a bosu.

52. Which is impossible.

53. To paraphrase Charlie Weingroff, a perfect deadlift is a mythical beast that you can’t really define unless you see one. It’s sort of like a unicorn. What is a unicorn? A horse with a horn sticking out of its’ head. What is a deadlift? A heavy-ass weight pull of the floor to standing. You’ll know a perfect one when you see it, and you really know an ugly one when you see it.

54. No other exercise has potential side effects like massive nose bleeds, reddened eyes, and possible projectile vomit.

55. Nothing builds muscle thickness and density more than heavy deadlifts. This feature is what gives people the long-yearned after “tone.”

56. Deadlifts have a greater affect on cardiopulmonary health than common cardio exercise, much in the same way that building a high-rise tower to withstand a 7.0 earthquake also helps prevent damage during a moderate windstorm.

57. Side raises with 15 pound dumbells won’t build deltoids in anywhere close to the same scale as when those same deltoids are screaming in your ear as they try to prevent your shoulders from ripping out of their sockets.

58. Contrary to popular belief, heavy deadlifts are not bad for your low back. Piss-poor deadlifts, be they heavy or light, are demonstrably destructive to your low back.

59. The ability to develop strength and stability through the lumbar spinal muscles is one of the primary factors in preventing lumbar discogenic issues, as it helps buffer shear forces the disc is exposed to, which if left unchecked could result in a bulge, herniation, or even spondylolisthesis.

60. Deadlifts build the strength and stability of lumbar spinal muscles.

61. Word.

62. Speed pulls suck when you forget to lock out your arms at the top of the movement. My kids may be born with headaches after those ones.

63. Lifting heavy weights through a stable and static base of support lets the core muscles work a lot harder and become more stable than any unstable surface could ever hope for.

64. Crunches can’t work the entire core the way deadlifts can, nor can you ever look cool doing them.

65. Same thing goes for pilates or yoga. They build endurance, but not strength.

66. A powerful deadlifter should have the hip mobility necessary to do the splits.

67. I’m 3 inches away from being able to perform saggital plane splits.

68. If you expect your milkshake to bring all the boys to the yard, you’d better have some deadlifts under your belt to give them a reason to walk on the grass.

69. If your nickname is “Ant” you’d better be able to lift multiple times your body weight.

4.5 times body weight to be exact.

70. Sitting in the groove of a flawless deadlift is like being in the Matrix. It doesn’t feel real, and everything is kinda tinted green.

71. One of the only exercises that can develop depth and thickness to the upper traps and mid back is heavy deadlifts.

72. Fat burning capability is dependent on the metabolically active tissue, as well as the rate of activity within that tissue. By having extra muscle mass and by having it cranked up to high neural activity means you have a greater chance of burning fat and getting lean if you lift heavy.

73. I had clients deadlifting bodyweight after abdominal reconstructive surgery. This helps to reduce the risk that they may have any follow-up issues, and will reduce their risk of re-injury and more surgeries.

74. Max weight lifts help you see God. After each set you see a bright light, and are usually tempted to walk towards it. That’s what this guy did.

The bright light was the writing on the dumbells. He went for it. It didn’t go well.

75. Seriously, why are you still reading this and not deadlifting?? Grab the bar and make like you’re in Oz and you got the top bunk. OWN THAT WEIGHT!!!

 

  • Stone

    That was some good stuff Dean, you had me rolling. I definitely like 65.  I taught one of my clients how to do a kettlebell deadlift yesterday and told her this is probably one of the best exercises you could ever do and this I read you post lol.

  • Stone

    That was some good stuff Dean, you had me rolling. I definitely like 65.  I taught one of my clients how to do a kettlebell deadlift yesterday and told her this is probably one of the best exercises you could ever do and this I read you post lol.

  • BBMitch

    Great article.  Excellent use of multimedia and comedy to accent the gold (Gold Jerry!).

  • BBMitch

    Great article.  Excellent use of multimedia and comedy to accent the gold (Gold Jerry!).

  • Ryan

    I would love to see a separate article/blog post on #18.

  • Ryan

    I would love to see a separate article/blog post on #18.

  • Anabolicx

    Really really awsome stuff about deadlift…everything that man need to know….
    Some questions:
    ’71. One of the only exercises that can develop depth and thickness to the upper traps and mid back is heavy deadlifts.’
    What about lower traps – how hard does deadlift hit this muscle?
    Is it an effective exercise to train for scapualr stability?
    What about actively posteriorly tilting during deadlift – not just pure retrating – I think about lower traps function : thoracic extenion + scapular inferior angle lateral movement(upward rotation = I think about slight elevation of acromion) + posterior tilt of scapula and not just DOWN and BACKward tilt – It is more like Up + Backward tilt (slight retration)….
    Is it a completely stupid thing or else…???
    Second Q:Rotator Cuff Issue…
    Subscapularis=can we train subscap with deadlift (to rehab humeral anterior glide=weak subscap)
    What other effective exercise help to rehab Humeral Anterior Glide Syndrome…

    Thank you and keep up with the good work….

    • deansomerset

      Yes, it definitely hits the lower traps. It’s one of the best for scapular stability, and a posterior tilt does help increase lower lat fiber activations, but the person has to be cautious they don’t begin hinging from their lumbar spine to create the movement.It’s a matter not necessarily of scapular positioning, but of scapular rigidity during the movement. Where ever it lands, it should stay there versus being yanked up and forward by the weight remaining stationary as your thoracic cage move up through the shoulders.

      There’s lots of rotator cuff involvement with a good deadlift, and a lot of different exercises that can be used as well as deadlifts, like farmers walks, suitcase carries, chinups, etc.

  • Anabolicx

    Really really awsome stuff about deadlift…everything that man need to know….
    Some questions:
    ’71. One of the only exercises that can develop depth and thickness to the upper traps and mid back is heavy deadlifts.’
    What about lower traps – how hard does deadlift hit this muscle?
    Is it an effective exercise to train for scapualr stability?
    What about actively posteriorly tilting during deadlift – not just pure retrating – I think about lower traps function : thoracic extenion + scapular inferior angle lateral movement(upward rotation = I think about slight elevation of acromion) + posterior tilt of scapula and not just DOWN and BACKward tilt – It is more like Up + Backward tilt (slight retration)….
    Is it a completely stupid thing or else…???
    Second Q:Rotator Cuff Issue…
    Subscapularis=can we train subscap with deadlift (to rehab humeral anterior glide=weak subscap)
    What other effective exercise help to rehab Humeral Anterior Glide Syndrome…

    Thank you and keep up with the good work….

    • deansomerset

      Yes, it definitely hits the lower traps. It’s one of the best for scapular stability, and a posterior tilt does help increase lower lat fiber activations, but the person has to be cautious they don’t begin hinging from their lumbar spine to create the movement.It’s a matter not necessarily of scapular positioning, but of scapular rigidity during the movement. Where ever it lands, it should stay there versus being yanked up and forward by the weight remaining stationary as your thoracic cage move up through the shoulders.

      There’s lots of rotator cuff involvement with a good deadlift, and a lot of different exercises that can be used as well as deadlifts, like farmers walks, suitcase carries, chinups, etc.

  • Tapstar001

    Dean, I need to come to you and get some tips on the best way to ensure that my clients are doing these properly.  My only experience with deadlifts was when I was doing Body Pump classes in early 200-2001. 

    • Dean Somerset

      Yes. Yes you do.

  • Tapstar001

    Dean, I need to come to you and get some tips on the best way to ensure that my clients are doing these properly.  My only experience with deadlifts was when I was doing Body Pump classes in early 200-2001. 

    • Dean Somerset

      Yes. Yes you do.

  • Robert

    Dean like always I like your way of writing. Very informative and fun and above else true. Me too prefer DL and are staple of my workouts.

    • deansomerset

      Thanks Rob!!

  • Robert

    Dean like always I like your way of writing. Very informative and fun and above else true. Me too prefer DL and are staple of my workouts.

    • deansomerset

      Thanks Rob!!

  • Thank you! Not only I agree with most of your reasons, but it’s been a while since I don’t laugh so much. You’re the funniest serious lifter I know. Jon Pall Sigmarsson would like you!

    • deansomerset

      Thanks!!

      •  Love the article. Lots of laughs. Question about biceps #44-Using a mixed grip and going for heavy single several months ago, it felt like my right elbow joint stretched. Since then can’t do weighted chins or regular chins, but can do pull ups. Have been taking it easy and switched to regular dead lift grip. Seems like it’s taking too damn long to get back to normal. Other than more time, any suggestions?

        • deansomerset

          Without knowing the specifics, it may be an issue with your pronator or supinator, as well as potentially the fascial connections through the elbow and across the radioulnar joint. Try mixing your grip up in different pain-free positions, and maybe seek out some soft tissue therapy to help it heal faster. Any tissue with reduced blood flow will take forever to heal, so having someone jam their thumb into it will help speed the blood flow into the area and speed the healing.

  • Marilia Coutinho

    Thank you! Not only I agree with most of your reasons, but it’s been a while since I don’t laugh so much. You’re the funniest serious lifter I know. Jon Pall Sigmarsson would like you!

    • deansomerset

      Thanks!!

  • Great article, and yes I read all 75!  You had me after #3…

    • deansomerset

      You sure it wasn’t the pic accompanying #2?? 😉

  • Great article, and yes I read all 75!  You had me after #3…

    • deansomerset

      You sure it wasn’t the pic accompanying #2?? 😉

  •  Love the article. Lots of laughs. Question about biceps #44-Using a mixed grip and going for heavy single several months ago, it felt like my right elbow joint stretched. Since then can’t do weighted chins or regular chins, but can do pull ups. Have been taking it easy and switched to regular dead lift grip. Seems like it’s taking too damn long to get back to normal. Other than more time, any suggestions?

    • deansomerset

      Without knowing the specifics, it may be an issue with your pronator or supinator, as well as potentially the fascial connections through the elbow and across the radioulnar joint. Try mixing your grip up in different pain-free positions, and maybe seek out some soft tissue therapy to help it heal faster. Any tissue with reduced blood flow will take forever to heal, so having someone jam their thumb into it will help speed the blood flow into the area and speed the healing.

  • Bruce Lee was awesome therefore deadlifts are awesome! That is all the reason you need to deadlift, everything else is just cool.

  • Jim Smith

    Bruce Lee was awesome therefore deadlifts are awesome! That is all the reason you need to deadlift, everything else is just cool.

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  • Dean your a nut lol

    Great read man…

    Rob 

  • Rob King

    Dean your a nut lol

    Great read man…

    Rob 

  • Had me laughing hard with that last video!

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  • Cory

    You had me at pooping better. I’m in.

  • Cory

    You had me at pooping better. I’m in.

  • Alex

    Could you please post a simple workout plan with deadlift for two days a week?Thanks!

  • Alex

    Could you please post a simple workout plan with deadlift for two days a week?Thanks!

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  • Abhinav

    My favorite lift described perfectly!

  • Abhinav

    My favorite lift described perfectly!

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  • kylging

    You’re an awesome writer!

  • kylging

    You’re an awesome writer!