5 Deadlift Variations to AVOID Low Back Pain – How to Perform Proper Technique

Avoid Low Back Pain with these 5 Deadlift Variations!
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Timestamps ⏱

0:00 – Intro – Deadlift Variations to Avoid Low Back Pain
2:17 – Join Thrive Market Today to get 30% Off Your First Order AND a Free Gift Worth up to $60!
2:57 – Conventional Deadlift
5:30 – Sumo Deadlift
9:45 – Romanian Deadlift
12:12 – Snatch Grip Deadlift
14:47 – Split Stance Deadlift
18:36 – Tip 1 – Tempo
19:55 – Tip 2 – Pauses

[Music] Let's go stay back [Music] For years I avoided a deadlift I had a Back injury made it so I didn't want to Do it and then I learned you know what Doing it with proper form and doing Different variations it's where it's at To get through that so I've got Marcus Philly who is an amazing amazing Educator when it comes down to Programming and he's going to teach me Five different deadlift variations that You can try as well awesome let's jump Into it and actually as we do that I'll Just share that I had the same story as You in college I had a really bad back Injury and I avoided deadlifts for a Long time and then it became this Weakness of mine and when I started Competing in CrossFit I couldn't have That as a weakness because we tested it Often so I had to figure out how am I Going to approach dead lifting and get Stronger in this position and not leave It as a weakness of mine and having Movement variety was key getting Different positions in this dead lifting Was going to allow me to kind of build Up all of the different muscles around The movement pattern and then also Having variations on how I was going to Put my body under tension and we'll talk Talk about Tempo we'll talk about pauses

We'll talk about a couple different Things today but really deadlifts Are Meant To Train our posterior chain so Hamstrings glutes and our back and one Of the one of the reasons people end up Having back issues when they're dead Lifting is because their mechanics or Their technique doesn't load the Hamstrings and the glutes effectively if These get a lot of the tension in this Movement it protects our low back so When somebody comes into a deadlift and They get into a bad posture their glutes In their hamstrings are not under Tension and they go to lift It puts all the stress into the wrong Place Versus the right place so loading Properly in these portions of our body Before we get into our back is so Critical to maintaining good positions And supporting and protecting our back When we deadlift we talked about this Morning when we were doing our sumos I Said we really want to get those knees Back and out of the way when We Dead Lift that's what's stretching out the Hamstring and what's putting more Tension on the back of your legs than on Your back after today's video there is a Link down below for Thrive market now That is going to get you 30 off your Entire grocery order okay so if you are Doing paleo maybe you're doing keto

Maybe you're intermittent fasting you're Trying different things out I wish there Were grocery stores that were dedicated For what kind of diet you were doing Right well Thrive Market is like that You just sort by whatever diet type You're doing and you can shop it opens Up a grocery store for you right there Digitally for whatever diet you're doing Which is super cool but the best part is Using that link you save 30 off your Entire grocery order plus a 50 free gift Because you're using that link through One of my videos so check out Thrive Market after today's video to save some Cash and get some awesome products so The first variation we'll just show is The conventional deadlift a conventional Deadlift is Kind of by definition when your arms are Outside of your knees okay and in the Conventional deadlift we want to have a Little bit of a knee Bend Hips and the shoulders directly Over the Bar And that way when I'm coming down into Position I'm driving through my legs but I'm also pulling At the hips And putting a lot of the tension back Here A couple common mistakes people make in The deadlift is they get down into too Deep of a squat position so this squat

Position is going to put all the tension On my quads which is where now I'm Vulnerable in my back because my Hamstrings and my glutes haven't been Loaded correctly so one of the tips that I give people is move yourself closer to The bar get your shins closer and rather Than look down to the bar I want you to Reach your butt out And then find the bar there once you Come and try that real quick because This is one of the things that we I saw With you is in an effort to try and keep Your back safe you were like I got to Keep myself very vertical yeah and when You're vertical you're not getting these Muscles all under tension so Push your knees back a little bit lift Your butt up a touch good and then that Has you more loaded in your hamstrings And your glutes rather than in your Quads that makes yeah it does make a lot More sense it's just yeah it's a natural Protection to want to come over like This but it's like once you get the Confidence and you can load the Hamstrings properly and you get that Neural firing makes sense That's right okay so uh why have Different variations of the deadlift Because as we move our feet into Different positions and we are going to Show five different variations we're now Learning great mechanics technique motor

Control in all the different positions That we might find ourselves in life People want to get strong so that they Can be more resilient when they're doing Life and you know the chances that You're going to go and pick something up Off the ground in this perfect position Every time I gotta go pick up a box you Know we don't always find ourselves in Perfect deadlift mechanic positions Sometimes our feet might be like this When we go to pick up a box sometimes we Have to bend over like this to pick up Something so we want to train a variety Of different positions in the gym so we Can make our back and our bodies more Resilient so the second exercise is the Sumo deadlift and by definition this is More of a of a deadlift where our feet Are wider than our hands some people Will be very wide with very narrow hands Some people will be a little bit Narrower with their feet maybe wider Hands but as long as the arms are inside The knees we're in that realm of sumo Deadlifting and I would encourage you In unless you're trying to be a Competitive power lifter and lift the Heaviest thing on the planet And you're if you're really focused on Health Wellness just building up a more Resilient back then play with different Positions sometimes I'll Sumo deadlift a Little bit narrow sometimes I'll Sumo

Deadlift a bit wider and what that does Is it just puts my hips in different Positions it incorporates my adductor Sometimes maybe a little bit more Hamstring maybe a little bit more glutes Depending on the position it's also Going to change my posture And the angle of my back As I'm pulling off the floor so here's The position that I might find today And the same thing applies I want to Reach my hips back find the bar and see That my my shins are pretty vertical I'm Not in this squat position and I do see That with the Sumo deadlift people will Make this mistake much more often They'll get deep into the squat and then Now I don't have that same tension on The back of my legs so once you come Around and get into that position we'll See if we can Optimize it Good so go ahead and release the bar Stand back up now I straight forward Don't look at the bar okay and I want You to just swing your hips back as far As you can so try and push your butt out Now that right there you're getting a Big stretch okay now put your hands to The bar Yep and drive your knees out And that is a much better setup so that Is the cue that I would give you can Lift it go ahead and lift oh that feels

So much better yeah Reset just to treat you to myself yeah And up awesome Yeah so that's the cue I used to used to Be one of the hardest things to teach Was how do we get somebody in the first Couple days to deadlift correctly and it Was almost you know without fail when I Was an early coach it was you know hey Let's go down and people would just be In these horrible positions and I Finally over time came up with a Sequence which was approach the bar Whether it's this stance or the wide Stance approach the bar and make sure That the bar is right over your Shoelaces okay then don't look at the Bar anymore now you're just going to Look forward And you're going to kind of do You know a bow yeah stick your hips back As far as you can and reach as far as You can forward and you feel a stretch Feel a stretch and then oh look I'm Ready to go yeah just put your hands Down yeah and never really look at it Because if you look at it that is just a Bad uh visual cue that just takes people Into an improper you know posture for a Deadlift so well said that I mean that Was perfect just I've never had anyone Explain it like that I love the Sumo Deadlift personally because I feel like I get it for me I can fire my glutes

Better I just feel like I feel it I Really feel it yeah and I've learned That unless I am putting tension and Load on a muscle in its end range I Don't really get Mobility benefit a Whole lot so like for me like I could Sit there static stretching until I'm Blue in the face but it's like I don't It just retracts but when I actually get Something where I'm really stretching my Crazy tight adductors yeah this just Like it opens it up and I'm it's Improved my Mobility so much it's crazy How it's improved my thoracic Mobility Because I have a Sartorius and kind of Adductors actually can play a role with Even the psoas and how everything ties In so that's one of my it is my favorite Deadlift position and it's another Reason why I think playing with Different variations of movements it's The same movement we're picking Something up off the ground but by Moving your feet around by finding Different nuanced positions you start to Like unlock things about your body and You know hey again it's like for Functional bodybuilders the way that I Approach my training and my programming It's about getting enough Variety in That we're really not leaving any part Of our body sort of untouched and Unturned okay next up we're going to go Into What's called the Romanian deadlift

Okay so a Romanian deadlift is and I'll Go ahead and pull it all the way up here A Romanian deadlift is where we're now Going to really emphasize just the hip Hinge not the knees so this is one where We don't keep our knees locked we keep Them slightly St slightly bent so not Completely stiff but from here all I'm Doing is that initial movement that I Talked to you about which was Hips back Bar goes past the knee and right back up Hips back bar goes right past the knee And back up and what this exercise is Going to really do is it's really going To focus a lot on the hamstrings right We're not going to get into that sunken Down position that comes from bending The knees which then gets you a little Bit of drive from your quads no we're Going to keep those knees back and we're Just going to be flexing or hinging at The hip and that's again going to be a Big big hamstring Focus gotcha yeah so I Like to teach this one from the top down Okay like it's really difficult for People to get into that optimal position At the bottom so just do a conventional Deadlift to the top and then eyes Forward or maybe about eight feet in Front of you and then hips just slide The bar down your legs push the hips Back and come back up and I don't think That it's important to go down and touch

The floor I think it's about going to a Comfortable spot where you feel like Okay I've got tension on my hamstrings And my glutes and from there I can pull back up Awesome definitely feel that Glute squeeze at the top a lot more And probably more of a stretch directly In the hamstrings as you get down Towards the bottom of this one and I Think for years my conventional deadlift Was basically an audio like I was I was And that's how I hurt my back right I Wasn't getting into that sunken position Properly so I would just overload an RDL In this room this you know and it would Just there you go that was the problem So yeah and that that that variation That we just saw it's gonna be Significantly less total weight than you Can do in a conventional deadlift Because now you're sort of taking out That sunken knee position where you can Drive through your legs and through your Posterior chain and now it's just Hinging at the you know at the hip so It's all hamstrings you're not going to Be quite as strong okay all right the Next variation is called the snatch grip Deadlift okay and the snatch grip Deadlift is comes from the Olympic lift The snatch and this is basically just a Wide grip with narrow stance so we did The Sumo which was wide stance narrow

Grip the snatch grip It's going to be kind of in that more Conventional position where my hips are Going to be low my knees are going to be Bent and my hands are going to be Outside what most people are going to Use as a as a benchmark is this ring This outer ring Now the snatch grip is going to place a Really big demand on your upper back You're going to have to actually connect With your lats and your upper back Muscles to keep the bar close to your Body When you're in a snatch grip you might Not have as strong a grip because you're Reaching out so wide on the bar so this Is where lifting straps can be Beneficial for people but what I love About this and this was one of Charles Pelican's favorite deadlift variations Because of the demand that it placed on The upper body as well as the lower body So you'll see when you get into this It's somebody who's had back challenges This is also a mobility and a Flexibility type of deadlift where you To get down into position you're really Going to have to sink your hips a bit More you might feel restricted too I Notice your ankles get more ankle Mobility out of that too like yeah Exactly and again those knees do have to Come forward a little bit more than we

Had already tried before but and then Really just pull the shoulder blades Back some perfect And from here as you come up just make Sure those knees come out and out of the Way on the way up [Music] [Music] Pause at the top and this one I really Want you to exaggerate hips going back On the way down and keep the bar sliding Down your thighs on the way down Much more yeah yeah and so you can use That lowering phase of this of this Particular variation To work on that Mobility I can really slow down And work on getting that stretch Finding that optimal position Because we're stronger in that lowering Phase yeah yeah okay so we've covered Conventional sumo RDL snatch grip and now we're going to Do the unilateral bias we'll call it a Split stance deadlift or split stance RDL and so we do a lot of two-legged you Know or two-armed training exercises in The gym it's how we can overload you Know squat Deadlift bench but doing things on one Leg or biased towards one leg it's Awesome for building up Balance strength from side to side and When we have balance strength from side

To side we can reduce dramatically our Susceptibility to injury so something That I always try and incorporate is Some unilateral bias training and this Is Simply the same RDL that we did before But now I'm going to kind of Kick this Leg back it's kind of like a kickstand It's just there for some balance I've Got about 10 to 20 percent of weight on This leg 80 to 90 on this leg And I'm going to perform the same Movement and so one way to get into that Position is maybe just bring it to the Top then kick that leg back And then the same mechanics As before And all this can be done with dumbbell As well just you know if you don't have A bar or you're just like trying to be Super efficient at the gym and not Monopolize a bunch of equipment things Like that it's hard maybe you can't get A SWAT rack yeah I've been doing this With dumbbells obviously little changes But yeah and this this exercise in Particular the split stance RDL I think Is great with dumbbells just because you Can kind of maneuver and maneuver the Dumbbells around this knee a little bit Easier so why don't we show it here and Then we'll grab a set of dumbbells we Can show it that way too so just give me

A just a regular deadlift to the top so Two feet together start from the top and Then we'll move our way down with the Split stance so now take that slight Offset And then real slow on the way down and Remember it's that hips pushing back And back up Great That looks like a really good strong Position how does that feel that feels Good Yep balance it out get a few on each leg Now this is definitely an exercise I Mean we're just we have the bar Pre-loaded at 135 pounds but this is Going to be a lighter exercise of course You're just doing one leg at a time you Don't have as much stability from being On both legs yeah right taking things Onto one leg that's just a way of taking Away some stability we're adding Instability now you're having to handle More different Force Direction because You got side to side balance now as a Factor and so when when we have less Stability we want to bring loads down Just to keep us safe and because you're Just not going to be as strong yeah Let's grab a couple dumbbells and you Can just see and feel what that looks Like and so one of the benefits of Having the dumbbells is that your hands Not your grip and your the hands can

Kind of move in different positions And you might find like oh I can search That much closer to my center of gravity Maybe it feels a lot more comfortable Yep [Music] Perfect Now like a snatch grip deadlift is not Going to work with dumbbells you know The Sumo deadlift can but it's you know You might not get the same value as as Having a barbell yeah That's great I mean that's Definitely able to isolate different Parts of the body as I'm going through This yeah so that was five movement Variations Um I want to talk about two more things That I think are important if you're Trying to re if you're trying to build Your deadlift and you're trying to maybe Build back from a back injury The first is that Tempo something like Um controlling the pace of your lift you Know we're we're stronger as we lower Things down to the ground because we're Kind of we're not opposing gravity we're Kind of working in the same direction as Gravity so if you're You're not feeling super confident with Your deadlifting you can always start With a lighter weight something that Feels really confident to pick up the Bar but then you can overload by going

Really slow on the way back down And that can be a tool for you to build More time under tension and get more Muscle stimulus As you're doing your reps so instead of Grabbing another plate to make it harder Why don't you slow down that lowering Instead of going down and two seconds go Down in five seconds and so you're Building more time under tension you're Creating a bit more muscle damage which Is then going to require rebuilding Muscle synthesis to recover and to grow So Tempo is one important place to look At and then the second important thing Is Thinking about the positions that are Most vulnerable to you where do you feel The weakest let's strengthen those with Pauses now this can be this can be done In the same way that I just did it with That Slow lowering down or on the way up but Oftentimes people feel really they can Feel like oh I get really weak right at This position something I noticed when We were deadlifting this morning is that You were having this you know you were Having to take the bar around your knees You're wanting them so one way that we Could coach you is okay Thomas I want You to pull up to right below your knees And stop And then finish your lift so it's called

Like a segmented deadlift you're doing Two different segments you're pausing at A specific position and you're pausing At a position that you're you know you Have an intentional weakness at I'm just Like okay I'm gonna I'm gonna reinforce This by stopping there so some people in A Sumo deadlift could be One inch off the ground And then finish uh some people doing Romanian deadlifts it's right above my Knee That really helps me to focus in on my Back and connecting my you know my my Glutes And then they finish the rep Um so why don't we try that with your Sumo okay and we'll have you pause right Below the knee on the way up So go ahead and stand up again remember You're set up Hips out Good pull up right below the knee and Then pause for three seconds one two Three and up good and then slow on the Way back down And again One two three up that was a little Higher yeah it's okay Slow back down Try it one last time right below the Knee One two three and up And then slow back down

I felt that directly in a good way Strengthening the lower back so based Upon this we essentially have well five Variations plus two additional ways for Each variation that's right so Ultimately you're looking at quite a Number of different ways that you can Sort of manipulate your deadlift yeah so If you want to include that incorporate It in your training then and let's say You're going to deadlift once a week Okay well stick to one variation for Four to six weeks and see if you can Start to feel week after week that You're getting stronger you're getting More confident you know don't switch it Up every single week because you're not Going to adapt yeah so it's four to six Weeks doing the Sumo and then the next Four to six weeks you might do Conventional and so forth and then if You want to do it twice a week then Maybe you can include two different Variations on the same week while you're Doing you know your deadlift Progressions and then after a few weeks Maybe two or three weeks you start to Add in some of those pauses you start to Slow down your Tempo on the way down you Can use those variables to sort of make It more challenging or to focus on Problem areas that you're experiencing When you're lifting and I think with That you got plenty of variety to always

Be progressing and always be challenging And strengthening this pattern that I Think is such a weakness for so many People yeah that is Bullseye dead on so Marcus where can everyone find you you Can head over to any of my social media Channels at Marcus Philly on YouTube Also on Instagram that's a great place To get in touch with our content awesome Right on man

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