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Romanian Deadlift Demonstration

Romanian Deadlift Demonstration Video Video


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Rating:   Views: 314847

Recorded to demonstrate form. OVERVIEW This is a romanian deadlift, not a stiff-legged deadlift. The main distinction between the two is that the RDL is controlled from the hips -- the butt is "punched" backwards causing the torso to lower and then pulled back in to return to upright. In a SLDL, on the other hand, the movement is initiated by lowering the upper body in an attempt to maintain the hips' position in space; the butt is not punched backwards. In either movement, you want to minimize knee bend so that the posterior chain can take the brunt of the load; however, in a RDL, the knees are allowed to bend further if necessary, especially when flexibility is inadequate. This is unlike the eccentric of a conventional deadlift, where the knees bend further so that the quadriceps can be better used at the beginning of the next concentric, which is one of the reasons why more weight can be lifted in the conventional deadlift than the RDL (though at the cost of less "isolation" of the posterior chain). METHOD Bend the knees slightly to start and push the hips backwards to lower the bar. Ensure to keep the bar in contact with the thighs, sliding it down them until you reach a position slightly below knee height before allowing the bar to continue to lower straight down. For a weightlifter, this better strengthens the body, keeping the bar in close and placing the shoulders over/ahead it, as needed during the pull of a clean. Notice how the bar stays in close against the thighs and lower legs and, consequently, the back must maintain a tight arch as the shoulders stay ahead of the bar. The chest also does not drop nor do the shoulders slouch as the bar lowers. Also, notice the power that the glutes, as well as the rest of the posterior chain, provide on the concentric motion. The glutes are strongly flexed and the hips shoved forward, causing the barbell to accelerate very powerfully to lockout. SAFETY For the most part, never perform an RDL, SLDL, good morning, etc. (movements that involve hip flexion) with completely straight and locked knees. Unlock your knees and bend them slightly any time that your hip is bent and you are externally loading the body. Otherwise, the tendons at the back of the knee can take the grunt of the load, instead of the hamstrings, and the likelihood of injury greatly increases. Lifting from the floor and lowering the barbell to the floor past a height just below the knees is not an essential part of this lift. In particular, IF YOU'RE JUST LEARNING THIS MOVEMENT, do not lower the barbell completely to the floor, as you likely lack sufficient flexibility to do so. Likewise, I'd advise starting with an eccentric (negative motion) instead, using a conventional deadlift or lifting off of the rack in order to get the barbell to the top position before beginning your set. Finally, use a slower tempo until you get the hang of the lift. FURTHER INFORMATION There's a nice set of RDLs at the end of this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_UFRn1JX0DA This is also a good narrated tutorial: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PnBREGM7pE0 This is a comparison of one lifter's bar path in the RDL vs. that of his clean: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i1taUuKre3w (1/2/2009)

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