Assistance exercises to help set back for deadlift Assistance exercises to help set back for deadlift

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Thread: Assistance exercises to help set back for deadlift

  1. #1
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    Default Assistance exercises to help set back for deadlift

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    Iím having issues strongly setting my back for the deadlift. I have some flexibility issues. Can anyone suggest some assistance exercises and / or stretches that will help me maintain a more pronounced / strong setting of my back?

  2. #2
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    May 2013
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    I know you don't want to hear it but the best exercise to learn to set your back is the deadlift. I saw on your other posts that you went and seen a coach and you reported that you were sorted out then. My guess is the weight got heavy again and you are losing your back again. It sucks but you may have to reduce a bit again to hammer the form then work your way back up hopefully passing you old spot. Remember your lower back and your hamstrings are in a battle that the lower back must win. Best of luck to you.

  3. #3
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    Best assistance exercise for this is doing deadlifts with a coach beside you shouting at you to set your back

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by zinedine kilbane View Post
    Best assistance exercise for this is doing deadlifts with a coach beside you shouting at you to set your back
    Just as good in my opinion is recording your deadlifts from the side. When you can watch what you just did while you are still panting and the memory of each rep is fresh you can see the difference between what you were doing and what you thought you were doing. Since I've been uploading these for my coach I've found that the vids work at least as well as his shouting did in person.

    And of course you should back the weight off if that's what it takes to keep your back straight. Then work back up with a straight back.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jacks1019 View Post
    Iím having issues strongly setting my back for the deadlift. I have some flexibility issues. Can anyone suggest some assistance exercises and / or stretches that will help me maintain a more pronounced / strong setting of my back?
    As far as assistance, the Romanian deadlift lets you practice keeping your lower back set while stretching your hamstrings. Your hamstrings may be winning the fight with your lower back and RDLs may help if you do them correctly and start light.

  5. #5
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    Can't find it now, but I believe Paul Horn had an exercise for this. It was something along the lines of getting a fairly light deadlift weight, doing your five step setup, but when you're setting your back/raising your chest, tighten your back so much that the bar lifts an inch off the ground (but don't actually deadlift it). Repeat for a set of 5 and do a full deadlift on the last rep. If you search through the forums you can probably find the thread where he explains the exercise.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jacks1019 View Post
    I’m having issues strongly setting my back for the deadlift. I have some flexibility issues. Can anyone suggest some assistance exercises and / or stretches that will help me maintain a more pronounced / strong setting of my back?
    - super strict RDLs:
    video yourself, let the bar down while keeping your back in extension,
    you might be surprised not get the bar below your low thigh/top of the knee.
    over the course of many workouts, try to to get lower with the while keeping your low back in extension.
    with these you actually are strengthening the erectors, AND getting an active stretch UNDER LOAD in the hamstrings, with an ECCENTRIC component involved.

    - barbell rows
    same thing, set your lower back in extension, tape your sets.
    be honest about your extension.
    Last edited by Mark Rippetoe; 07-02-2020 at 11:34 AM. Reason: spelling

  7. #7
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    Weird question, but you're using a home workout setup currently right? Are your plates the correct diameter? They should be about 45 cm/18 inches. I actually recently discovered the set of large plates I've been working with here at home (a very old set with bars that also do not match standard dimensions or weight) were about 3 inches smaller in diameter. It made setting the back harder, especially when doing SLDLs. I'd essentially been doing all my pulls from the floor with a 1.5 inch deficit.

  8. #8
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    To those recommending deadlift variants and rows:

    Given that those movements also involve setting the back into hard extension of both the lumbar and thoracic spines and the OP states he is unable to do so, how do these help? Or to be simpler, how is doing another exercise incorrectly going to help with what you're doing incorrectly on the primary exercise?

    OP, have to you tried the Superman drill? Can you set your back away from the bar?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Satch12879 View Post
    To those recommending deadlift variants and rows:

    Given that those movements also involve setting the back into hard extension of both the lumbar and thoracic spines and the OP states he is unable to do so, how do these help? Or to be simpler, how is doing another exercise incorrectly going to help with what you're doing incorrectly on the primary exercise?

    OP, have to you tried the Superman drill? Can you set your back away from the bar?
    I agree. I've never seen someone successfully learn to set their back by doing RDLs or rows since those things require that you already know how to control your low back. Doesn't mean it's not possible, just that I've had no success with it and people I've seen try it have had no success with it. Here's what's worked for my people:



    and

  10. #10
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    May 2020
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    starting strength coach development program
    Yes, I saw a coach and got straightened out. Even saw him again to reinforce. Issue is that when I set my back, it barely looks like I’m doing anything. I think this is lack of flexibility....so wondering what I can do to further improve. But will keep deadlifting and will keep seeing the coach.

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