Improve your technique and overall performance while Deadlifting
1. Push the earth down
Drive your heels into the ground and push the ground away. Naturally, we want to initiate the deadlift by pulling the bar up of the ground. This, however, leads to more of the back and upper body muscles doing the work and not your body’s main engine, the hips. It will strain your back more than necessary.
Instead, push the earth down with your heels, all the while maintaining rigid shoulder and upper back stability (next point). And think of your arms as just a lever attached to the bar.
2. Break the Bar in Half
When you grab the bar to get into position, externally rotate your shoulders as if trying to break the bar in half to create tension off the bar. Your Elbow creases will face forward-ish. This will lock your shoulders into position, creating torque, bringing your shoulder blades together and help you maintain tension in the upper back.
Hold this position throughout the entire movement. A good time to reset, in case you lose tension on the lift, is at the top before lowering the bar again.
3. Brace at the top
Before you even go down to grab the bar, you should already be set up for the lift. Setting up at the bottom is the worst thing you can do and leads to lousy overall tension. By bending forward, grabbing the bar and then getting into the neutral spine position you substantially increase strain on your back.
You should already be braced with a neutral spine and shoulder blades together when you go down to grab the bar.
4. Screw the feet into the ground
What we do at the shoulder we need to do for the hips too. Screw the feet into the ground (imagine pulling the floor between your feet apart) and you create tension in your hips, which gives you more stability and noticeably more hip drive. You will feel more solid and will notice the strain easing off your low back when you start to go heavy.