Sumo Deadlift

Sumo Deadlift

All the steps to do it the best way possible


Deadlifts are an amazing full-body exercise that builds strength, improves posture and optimizes your functional movement in everyday life.

To gain the full benefits of the deadlift, trainees must execute the lift with proper form.

Otherwise, it will leave you vulnerable to back pain, biceps tear or other injury risks.

How to Sumo Deadlift anyway?

➔ Take a wide stance, feet under the bar, toes pointing out.

➔ Squat down with a straight back and grasp the bar.

➔ Squeeze the bar off the floor and drag it up to your legs until it locks out at the top (do not pull back into the shins).

The bar should come off the ground in a vertical path.

Follow these three rules:

1) Start with the bar over the middle of your foot

2) The shoulders should be slightly in front of the bar

3) Start with the hips start relatively high

The target muscles are the Quadriceps Femoris and Gluteus Maximus (colored red).

Note: The Spinal Erectors can also be a part of the target muscles (isometric contraction).

The action in the hip joint is extension with adduction.

The Adductors adduct the hip and assist in hip extension.

Here are a few tips that will make a big difference in your Sumo Deadlift


➔ Keep your feet between 30 – 45 degrees out

➔ Keep your knees out in line with your toes

➔ Make sure you fully extend at the top and work in a full range of motion.


In the wide stance, push your knees out to the sides and not down to prevent the knees from collapsing inward. Pushing the knees out will allow the hips to travel toward the bar more quickly while improving the leverage.


Overhand Grip vs. Mixed Grip

The Overhand Grip is a pronated grip with both palms facing your belly.

One of the benefits of an overhand grip is that it allows you to keep the bar close to your body easily.

The Mixed Grip features one hand in a pronated position and one hand in a supinated position.

In other words – one palm faces you and the other faces out.

This grip generally allows people to lift more weight, however, the mixed deadlift grip creates a higher potential for injury, such as bicep tears.


What are the common mistakes I need to look for?

One common mistake of the Deadlift exercise is not maintaining a neutral spine.

It’s very common to see both sides of the spectrum when it comes to not maintaining a neutral spine.

On one end, we have the trainee whose spine is rounded.

On the other end, we have the trainee who overcompensates and pulls the lower lumbar into hyperextension, creating an extreme amount of tension and pressure on that area.


Another Common Mistake is when the bar is far from the Tibia. It’s important to keep over the middle of your foot when you start.


In Strength Training, small nuances can make a big difference. Having this knowledge can make the difference between getting the best results and getting injured.

Target Muscles

➔ Quadriceps Femoris

➔ Gluteus Maximus

➔ Pectoralis Major



➔ Triceps Brachii

➔ Serratus Anterior

➔ Hamstrings

➔ Adductor Magnus



➔ Abdominal muscles

➔ Erector spinae

➔ Gluteus medius

➔ Pelvic Diaphragm (male)


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