Conventional Deadlift – Finale
In part one we went over the various exercises to help your deadlift. Then, in part dos, we explored some of the different foot positions that should be utilized during training. Hopefully you have mastered everything in both articles because we’re now moving on to accommodating resistance.
The reason we’re going to focus on accommodating resistance is simple – it allows greater loading during the concentric phase. This means that the weight will feel light at the bottom but heavy at the top. Adding bands and/or chains will not only force you to build speed where the weight is the lightest, it will force you to get stronger at the completion of the lift. How does this benefit your deadlift? Keep reading and training your grip…
Training the deadlift with bands is not for the weak. I believe that you must have achieved a basic level of strength before you should attempt it. The reason for this is you will consistently be doing supra-maximal training, which means you’re going to be lifting heavier than you ever have before. For the examples below we will be assuming that the lifter has a 500lb deadlift and has performed the necessary (dynamic) warm-up.
There are a few ways to hook them up to the bar. First, you want to find something stable, like a jumpstretch platform. If this isn’t available, you can double up the bands around the base of your power rack or use dumbbells.* Either way you should be using a doubled up mini band per side. Once you have wrapped it around the base, bring both ends over the bar and inside the plates.
* dumbbells might not work once you move up from mini bands.
The first couple sets will feel easy as you’re a 500lb deadlifter. The doubled up mini bands will add around 90lbs to the top of the lift. Since we’re using bar weight + band tension, you should feel like you’re lifting 135lbs. As you work up in sets you will notice that the bands are pulling the bar down and you have to squeeze the bar harder. This is because the perceived weight is increasing. Sure, it’s only 315lbs. Add 90lbs of band tension to that and you’re perceived weight is 405lbs. So we decide to work up to a single of 455lb of real weight+90lbs of tension, which equals a perceived weight of 545 heavy *** pounds at the top of the lift. This is more than you’ve ever deadlifted before.
How should you implement this? One week on and one week off should work fine. For the 500lb deadlifter, this is how I would setup a max effort training day with bands:
bar x 5-10
bar + bands x 3
135 + bands x 3
225 + bands x 3
315 + bands x 1-3
365 + bands x 1
405 + bands x 1
Rinse and repeat for each week you use bands, gradually adding plates. After this, hit your accessory and GPP, and then go eat. You will be hungry. Once you’ve gotten to this level you should experiment with light bands or the short bands available from EliteFTS.com
Most of this also applies to using chains for deadlifting. The setup for chains is simple – drape them over the bar.
You might be using 200lbs of chain and 225lbs of bar weight. This will feel like ~225lbs at the bottom but, when you start pulling and the chains start coming off the floor, you’ll feel all the chain weight being “added”, and that it’s significantly harder at the top.
Let’s pretend you’re the 500lb deadlifter and that you’ve just worked up to 365lbs + 200lbs chains. Take the chains off and see how easy 365lbs is. Did you notice an increase in the speed of the lift, especially at lockout? What do you think will happen if you lift supra-maximally (more than you normally could) with bands and chains? You’re going to learn to explode, using all your strength and speed, throughout the lift.
That’s what accommodating resistance is all about. As stated earlier, you will increase your speed and strength. Remember, the faster you can lift the weight with the most force, the easier it will be to complete the lift.
**in this vid I am deadlifting with light (purple) bands that were wrapped around the base twice. We estimated at least 250lbs/tension at the top.