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How To Do Stiff Leg Dead Lifts

Of everything you do in the gym, this lift most closely resembles the one you do in real life whenever you reach down to pick up a kid or a couch.


  • TIP: To target your hamstrings, stand with your forefoot on a block or weight plate about an inch thick, keeping your heels on the floor.
  • Step 1: When you’ve completed the set, don’t drop the barbell. Bend your knees and squat down until you can gently put it on the floor.
  • FACT: Lifting 45 pounds during a stiff leg dead lift puts the equivalent pressure of three times your body weight on your spine.
  • Step 2: Slowly lower yourself until your back is parallel to the floor.
  • TIP: To help keep your back straight, keep your head up and look straight ahead while sticking your butt out.
  • Step 3: Keep your back straight, bend forward from your hips, and grab the barbell with a wide overhand grip.
  • Step 4: Keep your back absolutely straight and your legs slightly bent as you raise yourself upright. If you have to bend your back, stop—you’re lifting too much weight.
  • Step 5: Stand behind the barbell with your feet straight ahead, shoulder width apart.

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