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Barbell On deadlifting frequency and safety tips in Easy Strength programs.

SherdenSeaman

Level 1 Valued Member
So far, the begginner strength programs I found about only recommended deadlifting once a week, rarely twice, and sometimes even on their own day. Yet the Easy Strength program I'm following prescribes doing every move every day.

At first, I did not question it, but I'm already starting to feel some elbow+finger pain and lack of progress in my weights. My lacking sleep schedule may also contribute, but still, I have always felt its my weakest lift. I don't feel any back, knee or spine pain so far, though.
 

Steve Freides

Staff
Elite Certified Instructor
So far, the begginner strength programs I found about only recommended deadlifting once a week, rarely twice, and sometimes even on their own day. Yet the Easy Strength program I'm following prescribes doing every move every day.

At first, I did not question it, but I'm already starting to feel some elbow+finger pain and lack of progress in my weights. My lacking sleep schedule may also contribute, but still, I have always felt its my weakest lift. I don't feel any back, knee or spine pain so far, though.
Sounds like your Easy Strength may not be easy enough.

-S-
 

SherdenSeaman

Level 1 Valued Member
What weight are you lifting in your easy strength DL sessions and what is your max DL?
On the 2x5 days I'm lifting 121 pounds, based on a 145 6RM. I'm not sure about my 1RM, considering the calculations I tried threw around 166 pounds... yet I squat the same weight on my easy days and my 1RM is closer to 205 pounds. I understand deadlifts are more taxing and can deplete the nervous system more easily, so I am at a loss on what to do.
 

watchnerd

Level 8 Valued Member
On the 2x5 days I'm lifting 121 pounds, based on a 145 6RM. I'm not sure about my 1RM, considering the calculations I tried threw around 166 pounds... yet I squat the same weight on my easy days and my 1RM is closer to 205 pounds. I understand deadlifts are more taxing and can deplete the nervous system more easily, so I am at a loss on what to do.

If you're not recovering day to day, go lighter.

Treat it as skills practice, rather than strength training.

When I'm not trying to peak for competition, my training weight for pulls is one I can do daily and still do the same the next day with no negative impact.
 

Steve Freides

Staff
Elite Certified Instructor
@SherdenSeaman, could we get a little background on you to help us understand your lifting issues? Height, weight, age, gender, lifting experience, other athletic experience, other athletic pursuits now (e.g., martial arts, a sport, a physical job, etc.), injury history and current injury-related exercise restrictions, any health issues, and anything else you may think relevant.

Thanks - lets get all that before we start talking about poundage for your deadlifts.

-S-
 

SherdenSeaman

Level 1 Valued Member
@SherdenSeaman, could we get a little background on you to help us understand your lifting issues? Height, weight, age, gender, lifting experience, other athletic experience, other athletic pursuits now (e.g., martial arts, a sport, a physical job, etc.), injury history and current injury-related exercise restrictions, any health issues, and anything else you may think relevant.

Thanks - lets get all that before we start talking about poundage for your deadlifts.

-S-
Sure.

I'm a 28 year old male. I'm 6'0 ft tall, 193 pnds. My body fat percentage is around 20%. To an observing eye, I may look athletic and on the ''buff range'', like a rugby player, with big quads and thick torso... but my appeareance is deceiving. I'm not very strong, nor fast, nor agile. Once you notice my arched knock knees, you'll get an idea.

I spent my childhood and early teens as an overweight kid who neglected sports. From then on, I started to train physically so a semi regular basis until today. Still, I've never been proficient in any sport, although a few people have said I have very good grip strength and may have some latent talent for boxing.

Started weight training at age 18 and spent years without knowing what the hell I was doing, just putting plates on the barbells and playing with dumbells until I seeked advice, researched and planned my diets. I improved drastically from then on, and that started only 2 years ago. So far, my lifting numbers are pathetic, barely ranging on novice on my upper body lifts and as low as untrained on my lower body, according to Symmetric Strength at least.

On the injury department: I was born prematurely, so my abdominal region never developped well and the opening for the umbilical cord remained semi-open.
This, my bad sleeping schedule, ocasionally heavy physical jobs and ego lifting eventually led me to develop a chronic abdominal diasthasis so painful I could not lift a dumbell for a month. From then on, I spent like a year without being able to perform a single compound or bodyweight workout due to the pain. Thanks to physiotherapy and other treatments, I'm slowly healing and am able to do compound lifts, with a waistband though. As long as I don't arc my back backwards, I'll be fine.

So far I also injured my right achilles tendon, my left lat and my right shoulder, but none of those injuries were ase serious as to leave strong sequels, that's my impression at least. Still, my pelvic tilt and external rotation, along with my knock knees force me to open my legs a lot when I squat, otherwise it feels as if I'm breaking apart.
I also suffered from chronic sinusitis and a pierced eardrum for years until I got surgery in my late teens.

Right now, I work at my home office as a freelancer. My only physical activities are 5 lifting sessions a week and a couple walks in the park, I haven't played a single sports game or punched a heavy bag in years. Due to the nature of my job, my sleeping schedule is a mess and I haven't got 8 hours of good sleep in years. I'm still surprised I haven't got more injuries.

Hope it was not too long.
 
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Steve Freides

Staff
Elite Certified Instructor
@SherdenSeaman, thank you for that information. My first observation is that diastasis recti is something I know nothing about, so it makes me ask what your doctors have to say about you deadlifting. In your place, I'd want multiple opinions about OK and not OK exercise for you.

@Brett Jones, your input here would be great.

-S-
 

LukeV

Level 6 Valued Member
Leaving aside for a moment the particulars of your case, I have never been able to deadlift solidly more than three times per fortnight. My lower back needs recovery time from that movement. Lowering the weight (or reps) except to ridiculous levels does not permit me to deadlift more frequently. I can deadlift twice next week if I only deadlift once this week. It’s like an inescapable formula for me. These days when deadlifting I go heavy, I keep the work reps low (~10) and keep the frequency once weekly. (BTW I tried shifting to trap bar but it didn’t appear to make much difference, admittedly I didn’t keep trying because I have the over 50s fear of injury.)
 

BJJ Shawn

Level 6 Valued Member
One thing I have noticed, and seen reference to, is that the more you go slow on the eccentric, the longer recovery takes. If I deadlift and then let gravity do it's thing and get out of the way, focus on the concentric, and don't try to gently put the bar down, I'm good on deadlifts daily or near daily. If I focus more on the eccentric, my glutes get much tighter and pull on my back and give some discomfort for a couple days while I recover. I can't rule out a form issue, and I don't know if one way helps build strength better than the other, but it definitely affects my recovery.
 

Philippe Geoffrion

Level 7 Valued Member
Could you film a rep for us please?

Also with the mention of having to push your knees out on squats, have you tried pulling in sumo?

You mention elbow and finger pain. Are you certain it is the deadlifts causing this and not one of your other lifts or activities?

I’d say the deadlift would help these issues, as long as you’re flexing your triceps (an odd cue I know) to ensure your arms are not bent during your pull. Are you using mixed grip and is it both elbows?
 

SherdenSeaman

Level 1 Valued Member
@SherdenSeaman, thank you for that information. My first observation is that diastasis recti is something I know nothing about, so it makes me ask what your doctors have to say about you deadlifting. In your place, I'd want multiple opinions about OK and not OK exercise for you.

@Brett Jones, your input here would be great.

-S-
I consulted several medical professionals and they all told me I can perform most lifts, deadlifts included, provided I don't hyperextend my abdominals too much and suck in my bellybutton while I'm tensing (without exagerating, so PR's and 1RM are dangerous to perform). That said, I also do physiotherapy four times a week instead of a typícal ab workout.

So far, I've went three months since the last time I felt pain, but its like walking over tightrope: A small mistake or slip in my concentration and it will feel as a stab in the navel, so painful I can't even wear a belt on my pants, jog, nor lift anything above shoulder level. Afterwards, it takes two months of recovery before I can perform any compound.

Made me aware of how our cores are the basis of our strength and how a weak one can compromise eveything else.
 

SherdenSeaman

Level 1 Valued Member
Could you film a rep for us please?

Also with the mention of having to push your knees out on squats, have you tried pulling in sumo?

You mention elbow and finger pain. Are you certain it is the deadlifts causing this and not one of your other lifts or activities?

I’d say the deadlift would help these issues, as long as you’re flexing your triceps (an odd cue I know) to ensure your arms are not bent during your pull. Are you using mixed grip and is it both elbows?
I may do it one of these days.

You just described the squat technique I use the most, pretty much the only one I can perform with significant weight without my torso going forward too much and my knock knees+hips cracking under pressure.

I suspect other activities contribute heavily to this pain, but the most elbow and finger tension I ever feel comes from Deadlifts. That was not my main concern though, but how much it may tax my nervous system.

I try not to bend my arms. I picture myself pushing and rotating my wrists inwards. I use a conventional grip, slightly wider than my shoulders.
 

Brett Jones

StrongFirst Director of Education
Master Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
Beast Tamer
Sherden,

You are seeing a Physio 4x a week—correct?

Or performing your physiotherapy exercises 4x a week?

Any other recommendations from the Physio?

I would not be aiming your training toward 1RM testing etc...you need to focus on setting a good base of movement and strength.

The connective tissue in the middle of the rectus abdominis (the linea alba) has separated so TA (transverse abdominis) activation and strength is critical. Avoiding the extension and stretching of the abdominal wall is important.
Tupler technique is well regarded: Diastasis Recti Treatment Program | Exercise Program for whole family
 
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