The deadlift is a potent and practical exercise that when added practically/appropriately can have the most impact on your training program. If you want to improve essentially all of your CrossFit movements (most notably, your Olympic lifts), practice the deadlift. If you want a higher box jump, practice the deadlift. If you want a faster sprint time, practice the deadlift. And so on…
Here is a quick breakdown of the myriad benefits of this simple, yet effective lift:
- Fat Burning – While not exclusively a deadlift benefit, weightlifting in general has been proven more effective than dieting alone, or dieting and aerobics to burn fat. With a larger “time under tension” ratio, deadlifting does maximize the fat burning capabilities when lifting at relatively higher weights.
- Better Posture – The Deadlift engages all the same trap, back, core and hip musculature that you need to recruit for a healthy daily posture.
- Multi-Joint, Multi Muscle – While working the lower and upper body muscles, this lift also includes multi-joint movement, which according to core Crossfit tenants, increases its overall efficacy.
- Real Life Applications – This one is paramount. There are few movements in CrossFit that can more directly and obviously be applied to the real world. Lifting grocery bags, helping your brother-in-law move, or lifting your child off the floor are all examples of using the deadlift in a real world application.
- Grip Strength – The only thing connecting the giant weight and your arms in the deadlift, are your 10 little digits. Your grip strength increases dramatically when deadlifting regularly. As such, the positive impact in the real world, for your Olympic lifts, and many other CrossFit movements is obvious.
- Cardio – After a heavy set of deadlifts, you will keeled over huffing and puffin like you just did a 1000 meter row test. The benefits to the cardiovascular system have been proven repeatedly, a quick search online will yield plenty of solid research on this topic.
- Injury Prevention – By increasing the strength of the muscles around critical tendons and ligaments, the deadlift can help to support critical body function (in the hamstrings and lower back for example) and help prevent injury.
While by no means exhaustive, this list should serve as a mild justification as to why we at Moov strongly support and regularly program the deadlift as a core piece of our methodology.