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Conventional vs Sumo DL Form Check

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  • Conventional vs Sumo DL Form Check

    Hello.

    When I pull Conventional, my lower back always seems to round.
    Here's 305 lbs w/ belt for [email protected] from last week: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ha38jP8eK8o
    Here's 225 lbs (significantly lower) beltless for [email protected] from today: https://youtu.be/YLNv5phKrVg

    I also noticed that I'm a little more bent over when pulling Conventional.

    I was pretty upset. So I tried Sumo for the first time.
    Here's 225 lbs beltless Sumo for 1 (I don't know what the RPE is): https://youtu.be/IodajlVozmo

    What do you guys think about my Sumo? (I have no experience with it whatsoever.)

    Should I try switching to Sumo? Because I think I need to further reduce the weights for my Conventional DL to keep my lower back straight, and I kinda don't wanna do that...

    Thanks!

  • #2
    Conventional: I'm no expert but I wonder if it would help to start your hips a little lower? Also maybe try pulling the bar into you as you initiate the pull - perhaps thinking about settling onto your heels slightly as you pull the slack out of the bar, hopefully that makes sense...

    I think Bryce from Calgary Barbell has a really good video on learning sumo, so maybe check that out... https://youtu.be/LGIS9vs65Sk

    Either way, just do what makes you happy dude.

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    • #3
      I think you are starting with your shoulders too far in front of the bar when you start. I question whether you are actually on your toes a bit. Also, you seem to be pulling off the floor with your back more so than your legs. You're not supposed to get your hips so low that you squat the bar off the ground, but you should be using your legs more than you are. Ultimately, moving your shoulders back off the start will put your hips a little lower. This should help. Although, 305lbs is still going to be too heavy to maintain a flat back (for now). You're probably not that far away from it though if you tweak your technique a bit and work up from there.

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      • #4
        Thanks for the replies guys!

        I think you are starting with your shoulders too far in front of the bar when you start. I question whether you are actually on your toes a bit. Also, you seem to be pulling off the floor with your back more so than your legs. You're not supposed to get your hips so low that you squat the bar off the ground, but you should be using your legs more than you are.
        I think I'm pretty sure that I'm balanced on mid-foot. When I lower my hips, the bar drifts in front of mid-foot, as I've tried today. I know Alan Thrall says that a good indicator of bar placement is when your knees are flush against your elbows, but when I focus solely on that, the bar ends up drifting forward. So I just position my shins 1" away from the bar.

        Also, I think I have fixed the rounding issue by thinking about tightening my hamstrings and really paying attention to back extension. What sucks is that pulling with a flat back puts my e1RM at 225-230 lbs. ish...
        Here's 225 lbs [email protected] with a straight back: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=44Ni...ature=youtu.be.

        Also also, I'm planning to start Bridge 3.0 soon. In Week 6, the program prescribes 2" deficit DLs. Here's my back angle when I pull using my Reebok Legacy's.
        Click image for larger version

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        Problem is, I'm afraid that my hips would be higher than my shoulders if I pull from a deficit. My gym doesn't allow me to take my shoes off, so until I can get a flat WL shoe, I'll have to pull in my Reebok Legacy's. Any advice on that? Or should I just do deficit DLs as written?

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        • #5
          I had actually thought about posting the link to Alan Thrall's video about knee position relative to the arms after I made the last post so funny you brought it up. My deadlift has felt a lot better since following that more myself as I wasn't using my legs off the floor well enough. You looked like you were making the same mistakes I was.

          The vid you posted looked better. However, you may be expecting a bit of over extension now. It looked to me like you kept a slight more "U" curve in your back than even flat but it is a little hard to tell. Some people might prefer this for general strength, but I allow myself to be flatter than that (I can over extend pretty easily if I want to). I even allow some back flexion when I set PRs; I just try not to let it get gross. For example, your belted 305lb pull was gross back flexion, in my opinion. Your first beltless 225lb vid would be the max I would tend to allow for a PR, but I still wouldn't be happy with it.

          What I used as reference to find my "neutral" lumbar start position was to take a video of taking a deep breath and getting tight while neutral standing up, get into position trying to maintain that neutral position, then review what that looks like. You really should just be trying to maintain this neutral back position as you pull rather than extension.

          When it comes to the shoes, having flat shoes is going to bring your hips down even for your regular deadlift so getting flat shoes will help all of the above. As for the deficit deadlift, you technically are already doing a deficit deadlift by the height of the heel of your shoe. Therefore, you could just do whatever the deficit is minus the height of your shoe.

          Overall, you're really not that far from getting it just right. You might drop the weights a bit to flesh this out, but I think you'll be back where you were fairly quickly.

          Have you ever done paused deadlifts? I find those are good for making sure I'm over midfoot, and I can feel my lower back muscles better so it's easier to tell that I'm maintaining a flat back. If not, they should be in the Bridge 3.0 or you can try them in some of your warm ups.
          Last edited by ElectroBarbell; 01-05-2019, 02:34 PM.

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