I’ve heard it probably now for the past 10-15 years…”If you want strong glutes, hamstrings, and low back, then you gotta deadlift!” or something like “if you want real functional strength that you gotta do your deadlifts.” The reality is these comments are only kinda true because they don’t tell us much about what deadlifts can help us most in our training.
Sure, I won’t deny that learning how to properly hip hinge is key, but in most fitness programs we only see people build off of going heavier or doing more reps. That is far from optimizing what deadlifts can offer us for our goals.
One of the big reasons that we choose the Ultimate Sandbag to teach deadlifts is because the feedback we get to teach better movement.
Why is just going heavier or doing more reps problematic in our progression of deadlifts? Research actually shows when we compare using different stances, for example going single leg, we get MORE glute and hamstring activation while getting less stress on our low backs. That seems like a win-win especially when compared to the standard bilateral deadlift.
Not only do such changes to our stance use more hamstring and glute max (the biggest of the gluteal muscles) but also glute medius as you see above. This means we can build better knee and low back health while this added stability helps us produce more strength and power. So, how can we do it?
We start with our Sprinter Stance deadlifts which are an incremental change to body position. This would be like doing a couple of more repetitions or going up in weight 10 pounds. The need to resist more movement though amps up the number of muscles used and not only increases our strength, but stability as well.
Coach Cari Satre shows how we progress these ideas by continuing to challenge our stances in both the length of the step and the plane of motion we use in our deadlifts. You start to see such a bigger world that the deadlift has to grow the results we get in the strength, resilience, and muscles we can use in our training.
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