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How I learned to love Deadlifts and stop worrying

The more I workout, the most I miss working out, when I can't workout; and deadlifts are always the lift I miss the most.

eople go on about form being the most important part of a lift (over: weight, tempo, rest etc.) but as I have learnt to my detriment, twice, this is true, and never truer than with deadlifts. Which you may wish to call deadies, as I do.

There is a history of bad backs in my feeble, bone-density-lacking family (joke – well, there is a history of bad backs, but we’re not a clan of bent-double troglodytes), but being a Stupid Man (TM), I ignored this, and previously tried to shift weight I wasn’t ready for/capable of. A while ago, this resulted in a fucked-up lower back, which still plays up from time to time.

The irony is, careful deadlifting within/up to your limits is one of the best ways to strengthen your lower back – and indeed your entire posterior chain (everything from your neck to your ankles on the back of your body). So building deadies into your programme is a no brainer. It’s the one exercise that makes you feel strong all over (yes, even more than squats).

Done correctly, you feel pretty much every sinew, every bubble of collagen stretch, tighten and contract, and it’s a really amazing thing. You also look pretty fucking cool in the mirror (and to everyone else in the gym especially those working out how to use the ab crunch machine SMH) picking up a bar with loads of weight on each end.

I’ve sort-of mentioned this before, but while the improved aesthetics* from lifting suuuuuure are nice, more than anything, I just want a strong, healthy body that will let me do what I want for the rest of my life. Base-jumping with ocelots in Peru? You got it! Playing ‘Chopsticks’ on the giant floor piano in FAO-Schwarz when I’m 90? Fine! Tight-rope walking over Lindsay Lohan AND family? Go for it! And so on. And deadlifts play a major part in this. Please make sure you do them with correct form, as shown by me above (before transitioning), if you're unsure in anyway, ask a PT in your gym, but: 1. Always ensure you're pulling your belly-button in tight at the bottom of the lift 2. Keep your shoulders locked back as much as possible 3. Stick your bum out 4. Squeeze your bum at the top as hard as possible 5. Go for lighter than you think at first, until you have the basics down Enjoy! Matt "dead inside" Boyles *Yes aesthetics are subjective blah blah blah

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