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Deadlift and hamstring flexibility

Posted by: Roswell

A trainer showed me straight-legged deadlifts, and several people suggested I learn regular deadlifts. So I found a video of it on the web yesterday, then I hit the gym and had a trainer show me. Well, we worked at it for some time, and I just couldn't do the movement properly. I think we discovered the reason was that I didn't have enough flexibility in my hamstrings. I guess I should point out that normally, I can't even touch my toes - in fact, I can barely get below my knees. As I was doing the motion, I also felt a lot of strain on the front part of my lower leg - in the shin area.

So how can I overcome this? Obviously it will involve doing some stretching every time I go to the gym.

Re: Stiff leg deadlift and hamstring flexibility

Posted by: Dian

I think sometimes, no matter how many times we look at videos, unless we've been coached on form, it won't help.

I am fairly new to lifting, and haven't been deadlifting for long. But here are a couple of things that helped me. I am sure if I misinform you or mistate anything, one of the GREAT deadlifters on the board will jump in and correct me.

When you look down from above, the bar should be above the toe joint. When you grasp the bar, your back will be slightly rounded..take the slack out of your arms by pulling slightly, then square your shoulders. THEN, drop your hips down just far enough to flatten your back. Your weight should be back on your feet.

Now..PUSH the floor away from you with your feet, your eyes should be looking forward. Your hips and shoulders should both move at the same time. As soon as your bar crosses above your knees..PUSH forward with your hips, and look up. The bar should drag along your thighs.

What helped me a lot was to think of this as a pushing' exercise instead of a pulling one. Push the floor away, push your hips forward.

Another thing...I am not sure if you are deadlifting off the floor, but it helps to have the bar up as far as it would be if it had the 45lb plates on it...so..8 inches up from the ground.

Good luck! I've come to love the deadlift, hope you do too!

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