Be explosive. That’s the first commandment when it comes to heavy, multijoint movements like the bench press and squat; and acceleration is crucial for moving large loads. The idea is to get the bar moving as quickly as possible from a dead-stop position at the bottom of the lift, which is why powerlifters train with elastic bands and chains to improve their starting strength.

When you deadlift, however, that’s not how it works. Have you ever tried to simply rip the bar off the floor with the same force you apply to a bench press or squat? If you have (and the weight was heavy), you likely either failed to complete the lift, or you landed in the orthopedist’s office with a herniated disk. The deadlift may not seem as technical as the bench press or the squat, but it’s just as complicated, if not more so. That’s because the correct way to raise the bar is by gradually accelerating it as you go, as opposed to “popping” it off the floor.


Start Slowly

The first upward pressure you exert on the bar should pull the “slack” out of it. Pull until you feel the bar start to bend. then begin your ascent.

Get It In The Air

Once the bar is off the floor, keep it moving by using acceleration, not by trying to jerk it up. Push through your heels and fall backward.

Pass Your Knees And Go

When the bar is just above your knees, that’s when it’s time to shift into high gear and hit top speed. Use the momentum you’ve gathered to finish the lift.