The dumbbell deadlift will improve your grip strength and increase the engagement of your lats, scapular, and your unilateral control much more effectively than the barbell deadlift.
There are actually two types of dumbbell deadlifts: the stiff leg and the classic. This tutorial will talk you through the right method of doing both of these variants.
The dumbbell deadlift is designed to strengthen your legs and your back. Specifically, you will feel your glutes working, along with your quads and hamstrings. The stiff-legged dumbbell deadlift will place more emphasis on your hamstrings.
To really ensure you're working your muscles as hard as possible, choose a heavy weight that you are comfortable with. You will not be able to lift as much with dumbbells as you can with a barbell. You should bear this in mind when choosing your weights.
You need plenty of room when undertaking the dumbbell deadlift; this means 3-4 feet of space all around you. But, since you're doing this exercise with dumbbells, you can do it virtually anywhere.
In this tutorial and related video, we'll show you the proper technique of the exercise, so you can complete it with confidence and safety. Completing the exercise properly will mean the best results for you, while avoiding the potential of injury.
Dumbbell Deadlift: A Step-By-Step Guide
- Step 1: Spinal alignment is very important in this exercise. You need to start with your feet shoulder-width apart. You need to be relaxed and stand straight, not leaning forward or back, while your weight is evenly balanced.
- Step 2: Bend down and position the dumbbells on each side of you. The grip should be in line with the middle of your foot. This will ensure the weight is distributed evenly through the center of your foot.
- Step 3: You now need to assume the starting position. For this, grasp the dumbbells in each hand and lower your bottom to the floor while raising your chest. Your thighs should be parallel to the floor and your back angled upward.
- Step 4: The weights will almost be coming off the floor at this point. Now you simply need to push down through your feet and move into a standing position. Your arms remain straight and will now be at your sides, just below your waist. Squeeze your glutes as you straighten and grip the weights tightly.
- Step 5: Slowly lower your body back down to the starting position by bending your knees; the dumbbells should just touch the ground. Take a deep breath and push back up again.
- Step 6: The stiff leg deadlift has a different starting position. The dumbbells need to be in front of your feet, one dumbbell over each foot. Your legs are only slightly bent for this starting position; your back should be flat and you should feel the tension in your hamstrings.
- Step 7: Take a deep breath and slowly move into a standing position. Again, move slowly down but ensure your knees are bent just a little; your legs should be nearly straight; 15 or 20 degrees is perfect.
- Step 8: Repeat steps 3-7 for the prescribed number of reps.
Check out this video tutorial to learn the fine-form points of the dumbbell deadlift.
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*Please know that weight loss results and health changes/improvements vary from individual to individual; you may not achieve similar results. Always consult with your doctor before making health decisions. This is not medical advice – simply very well-researched info on the dumbbell deadlift.