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I hate RDL's. Can I instead do Beltless DL's?

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  • I hate RDL's. Can I instead do Beltless DL's?

    Hey team!

    Currently pulling twice a week. A Comp. DL (w/ belt) & RDL's for sets of 7.

    Truth be told I hate RDL's, and I know that I've nocebo'd myself to an extent. But I was wondering if I could just do Beltless DL's as a supplemental pull.

    My gym doesn't have blocks and finding 45 lb bumper plates to pull off of can be difficult when the gym is packed (I do supplemental pulls on Mondays usually).

  • #2
    Paused beltless DL would be a good choice.

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    • #3
      Why would you need blocks/bumper plates to pull off of for RDLs? That would be for deficit DLs or rack pulls.

      here’s Jordan’s demo video, is this the movement you are doing?
      https://youtu.be/m6HXwAN-gdw

      edit: one thing about RDL. Technically, the movement starts and ends at the top, so I set up on my gym’s squat safety spotter arms, pick it up, walk back a step and start the movement. But as the video demonstrates, it’s fine to start and end from the floor.

      Also, as the weight never rests on the ground and it’s typically for much higher reps, this is the move that caused me to finally break down and buy some straps. The intended target to train in this movement is the posterior chain, and particularly the hamstrings, not the grip so much, but without the straps, a set of 10 RDLs fails at the grip first for me
      Last edited by Serack; 01-27-2020, 12:10 PM.
      Forum topics and other links I've found useful

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      • #4
        Something you can try which I'm going to try after my next meet is to train the opposite lift. If you do conventional deadlift, train that as your primary pull then do sumo deadlift on your second pulling day and vice versa if you normally pull sumo.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by DkMetz View Post
          Something you can try which I'm going to try after my next meet is to train the opposite lift. If you do conventional deadlift, train that as your primary pull then do sumo deadlift on your second pulling day and vice versa if you normally pull sumo.
          Take a look at this graphic by Stronger by Science.

          Click image for larger version  Name:	Squat-Hinge-1.png.webp Views:	0 Size:	41.0 KB ID:	51302

          From it, you get a pretty good comparison of how the RDL/SLDL emphasizes more of the hip hinge portion of the DL than a Sumo DL does.

          This isn't to say that the Sumo DL isn't a good supplemental DL variant, but there may be aspects of your DL that you/your program may want to provide more emphasis on where a RDL would accomplish that and a Sumo wouldn't.

          Source of the above graphic
          Last edited by Serack; 01-28-2020, 01:18 AM.
          Forum topics and other links I've found useful

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          • #6
            I forgot to say that the reason I wanted blocks / bumper plates is for block pulls (in the stead of RDL's).

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            • #7
              Great Scott!

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              • #8
                I hate em also. For no good reason I can think of.
                This cycle I'm switching to GMs, to which I'm only slightly indifferent.

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                • #9
                  Why are you so averse to RDLs?

                  The answer depends on your personal goals, weak points, level of advancement, etc. I'd probably opt for another variation more akin to an RDL that really accentuates the hip hinge - SLDL, GM, even deficits - before a beltless deadlift. There are also load/fatigue management considerations at play here, as you're likely able to load up a beltless deadlift a fair bit heavier than any of the variations I listed.

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                  • #10
                    Just putting my opinion in,

                    ive never done a Romanian deadlift in my life and I’m close to pulling 600, so it’s definitely not needed. I pull twice a week, my variant is always paused dead’s for 3 sets of 6-7

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                    • #11
                      Nate B

                      Not "averse", per se, just dislike doing them.

                      I hear ya on the load management. Definitely facts. But I think there's something to be said about "enjoying training" and I just dread having to do RDL's for sets of 7 the end of a session.

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                      • Nate B
                        Nate B commented
                        Editing a comment
                        That's fair, you certainly don't NEED to do them to make deadlift gains haha. I was just curious if there was a particular reason why you didn't like them. Enjoying training is definitely a must, so if doing RDLs makes you dread training or more likely to skip your deadlift assistance or whatever, then yeah they've gotta go. I'd still maybe lean towards doing more of a variation that you don't dislike as much like deficits, SLDL, etc, but if you think beltless deads would work for you by all means go for it - won't know until you try, right?

                    • #12
                      Nate B

                      Yessir. Been doing block pulls & really enjoying them. Luckily the gym has been empty enough for me to steal bumpers from other racks, lol

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                      • #13
                        Hijacking the thread to ask how much you would benefit from getting a pair of straps? I kind of like the grip part of RDL, even though I know its not primarily meant as a grip exercise. More generally how are we to think of these light day lifts? How are they contributing to the main lift performance? Is it better to do RDL or SLDL than just plain and basic DLs with lighter weights than your usual working set?

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                        • #14
                          Idk but they're programmed regularly in BBMD templates. Jordan seems to like them & Austin's old log he would do a Comp. DL; a Paused DL; and then RDL's (usually paused & RDL's on the same day).

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                          • #15
                            Exactly. I have no problem doing them really, I actually find that I like to mix up lifts a bit. It just occurred to me when reading this thread that I don't really know why I do them instead of 'just' deadlift. I mean I can answer "because its in my program" but that's not much of an answer if someone asks.

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