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Exercises Movements, technique & proper execution

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Old 08-07-2006, 07:14 AM   #1
Darrell E. White
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My Dead Lift technique is awful and I will be working with a trainer next week on technique. I'd love to lift more (BW 155, max DL only 195), but frankly I just want to do the lift as it comes up in the WOD without hurting myself.

My question is, given the need to practice an exercise so that the technique becomes second nature, is there a benefit or a significant risk to adding very light weight dead lifts to my CFWU in order to "grease the groove?"

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Old 08-07-2006, 07:34 AM   #2
Dan John
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Well, I think there are only two ways to bang up your deadlift: deadlift all the time, like you are suggesting, or never. I deadlifted 628 without doing any deadlifts for about two years, just snatches and clean and jerks. Actually, if I "knew then what I know now," I think I would have pulled a lot more, I used to stay on the balls of my feet. It's a wonder I pulled over 400.

I think that Pavel's "Power to the People" has a couple of excellent templates on deadlifting daily. I have to applaud you for understanding that that you have a weakness and you are addressing it. All too often, it seems to me anyway, that people try to learn about 10,000 things and never even get strong. Just to ruin your day, my daughter, Kelly, pulled 245 as a sophomore weighing in around 130 and my daughter, Lindsay, pull 225 as an eighth grader doing a "school visit." (You visit my class, you lift).

My point? It might help you to get around others who are doing deadlifts and I bet your DL is far better than what you think...Allen only snatched 85 when I got to the clinic and snatched 165 about a half hour later. Maybe you just need a better environment. My daughters are in a roomful of people doing deadlifts or whatever and you can't help but do more...
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Old 08-07-2006, 10:27 AM   #3
Russ Greene
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Everything Dan John said, plus make sure you use your glutes.

Someone who doesn't know how to use their glutes will look like this when they deadlift:

1. drives through the ground with their quads
2. glutes don't kick in
3. center of gravity shoots forward
4. lower back takes over

Don't be that person. Learn how to use your glutes for a strong, smooth pull. Heels, heels, heels.

Also lifting really light weights like 95-135 lbs. every day is not going to train you to lift a really heavy weight once. If you want to grease the groove, use heavier weights, as Pavel recommends, around 80% of your max.

(Message edited by sinai16 on August 07, 2006)
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Old 08-07-2006, 01:18 PM   #4
Jeff Belyeu
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Thanks for the advice guys! I think this is very similar to where I am at also. I just got an Oly bar and bumpers a week ago. Doing Xfit with my 13yr old son who has been away most of the summer visiting family, and trying to get him ready for football. After school starts with athletic conditioning class, plus football practice, I think I will be back to my lonesome. Will be a little easier to push myself, maybe with him holding the stop watch and not doing two at a time, switching weights, etc. Just last week, the ME DL came around. Besides a few times (3?) in a gym with a buddy, doing 3 sets of 10, I have never dead lifted before. So it was time to put the new bar to use. Was not too sure on my form the first few rounds. Felt a little too much pressure on my back, I think. Worked my way up. Higher weights made it a necessity to improve the form. At 185, and 205, I think I was improving as the strain on the back didn't seam as much. Going back down in weight, I think I had a better idea of the form, and was better able to follow it with the lighter weight. Any thoughts on a (basically) first time deadlifter?
Results of DL last week w/ new bar:

95, 115, 135x2, 165x4, 185x3, 205x2, 7x115, 6x115

The 135x2 is two singles w/ 135. The 7x115 is a 7 rep set w/ 115. I may need to get some more/different weight plates to go with what I just purchased. Felt a little limited in my options. I bought 2x45, 2x35, 2x25, and 2x10. Again, new with this. Maybe this is fine. Any thoughts/input? Thanks in advance.

Back to Russ's comment. I don't think I was using my glutes on these lifts. I think to correct what I felt in my back, I was trying to be more vertical, and/or tighten up my back more. This was a week ago, and I am going on memory. Thanks again.
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Old 08-07-2006, 02:27 PM   #5
Darrell E. White
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Dan and Russ:

Great stuff. Thanks. I'm pretty good at checking my ego at the door at my stage, Dan, but those are some pretty impressive numbers your daughters are throwing around! My 17 yo son pulled something around 435 when he was playing football as a freshman. I'm hoping that he and his trainer will spend some time with me on technique.

Russ, I agree that lighter weight lifted often won't help the heavier lifts. But I think my technique stinks on even the lighter weights now, and wonder is there is a similar "muscle memory" effect to repeating the movement without major weight stress. To pull more weight I'll simply have to pull more weight! After getting better, more consistent technique how often would you suggest heavy DL?

Thanks again for jumping in!
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Old 08-07-2006, 07:10 PM   #6
Keith Wittenstein
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I think there is something to be said for GTG with DLs at least until you get the technique really solid and have a certain base level of strength. If I were you I would have a bar loaded with your bodyweight laying around and try to DLs every time you see it. If you don't have a barbell laying around your living room, then at least have a kettlebell or heavy dumbbell or rock laying around and do lots of reps with it. I found that doing 20 reps with my KB a few times a day helped me put a few more pounds on my you my DL is pretty weak. If I had something heavier I'm sure it would have helped more.
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Old 08-07-2006, 08:00 PM   #7
Charlie Reid
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I dont recommend pulling 80% of your 1RM daily...especially in something like a deadlift. No more than 60-75%. Steve Justa, author of Rock, Iron, Steel has great advice on using low-volume singles routines daily with 60-70% of your 1RM. Another negative about lifting daily is to make sure your posterior chain, and many times, lower back, is conditioned to handle the amount of pulling. Maybe starting 3 days a week for the first two weeks, and then 4, then 5, etc. might be a better strategy to avoid problems.

I do agree with Dan John about O-lifting, however. My deadlift has gone up over 100 pounds in the last year and a half from basic O-lifting and Crossfit-style met-con.
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