The deadlift is one of the best ways to display absolute strength. Show me an athlete with a heavy deadlift, and I will show you an athlete with a strong butt, hamstrings, lower back, traps, and forearms, among many other things. The key to a strong deadlift lies in the ability of these muscles, but it is also dependent on maintaining form that is as near to perfect as possible. In order to maintain this perfect form, a couple things have to happen. The most important of these things is to maintain a NEUTRAL spine position, also known as a flat back. A rounding or an excessive arching of the spine can lead to missing a lift or worse; an injury. The proper set up is to have the armpits directly over the bar, and the middle of the foot directly under the bar, with the grip set just about a thumb’s width away from the bar. The height of the butt during the beginning of the deadlift varies upon the anatomy of the lifter (length of the arms/torso/legs). Another key to the deadlift is to maintain active shoulders. In order to accomplish this, the lifter must squeeze their shoulder blades together at the bottom of the lift, and maintain this tension throughout the lift. If the elbows are bent before the lift initiates, then the lifter is jerking the bar off of the ground, not pulling it. A good rule of thumb is if you can hear the bar leave the ground, then active shoulders were not maintained to begin the lift. The knees and hips should extend at the same time by driving the heels into the ground during the lift, loading the butt and hamstrings, not the lower back. During the pull the lifter must keep the bar as close to the body as possible, and reach full extension at the hips (stand straight up). The lift must be completed by controlling the bar all the way to the ground. –Marcus

Thursday’s WOD:

AMRAP 12 minutes

Deadlift: 125kg, 85kg
1 Shuttle Run
10 Med Ball Sit Ups
5 Lateral Jumps Over Bar
1 Shuttle RUn

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