Barbell Deadlift

Barbell Deadlift

In this lesson you will learn how to do a barbell deadlift. The barbell deadlift is one of the heaviest exercises and absolutely necessary for overall strength and testosterone production. At the same time it's the most dangerous exercise for your back and your knees -> especially if you lift heavy weights. Another exercise that's very good for overall strength and testosterone production is the barbell squat. For more back exercises please visit weight training and bodybuilding.


  • Stand with your feet approximately one shoulder width apart. Sit down like if you were doing a squat and grasp the barbell with both hands. Use deadlifting gloves or grasp the barbell with an alternate grip. Alternate grip => When one palm face forward and the other one faces back. Inhale as you grasb the barbell (before the first repetition). When you grasp the barbell, your hands should be a bit more than one shoulder width apart. The elbows should be able to pass on the outsides of the knees when you lower the weight. Keep your back straight or slightly hollowed, but don't arch down at all. Using a weight lifting belt can help. Look forward, preferable into a mirror. This will help keeping the back straight. If you look down, you will automatically round your back. It is very important that your back is already in this position when you go down to grasp the barbell.
  • Stand up slowly and lift the weight with the strength of your lower back and your legs. Keep looking straight forward into the mirror and exhale at the same time. If you press out your stomach, the weight lifting belt becomes firmer and supports the lower back better. Keep in mind that your chest has to stay high and your back straight or even slightly hollowed. When you stand upright and the bar touches your thighs, pull your shoulders back, but don't elevate them with your traps. Push your hips forward a few cm at the same time.
  • Then move your shoulders forward again and start bending forward down. Also bend you knees like if you were doing a squat and keep looking straight forward into the mirror. Inhale at the same time and let the elbows pass on the outsides of your knees.
  • Stop when the weight touches the floor or your upper body is horizontal. Some people let the weight crash onto the floor after every repetition, others never let the plates touch the ground. What's really important is that you don't ever arch your back forward. Your lower back muscles always have to stay under contraction and should never be stretched.


  • The barbell deadlift should be done at the beginning of your back workout
  • Move slowly and concentrated. Don't create momentum.
  • Don't do heavy barbell deadlifts if you have back problems. Use a weight lifting belt.
  • If you never deadlifted before, start off with an empty barbell.
  • Work out with a training partner who can tell you if your back is straight.