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Teaching Deadlifting

Lizard King

Lizard King

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Sep 9, 2010
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Ok rocket scientists brethren. How do I teach my son to deadline? Just showing him form and correcting him has not been working, does anyone have any tricks to teach a newbie?
My gym has the big Rogue plates that mirror a 45 which is nice, but tried off the floor and off the rack and overall form is bad.
@DieYoungStrong I know you taught your son to lift, any tricks?
 
genetic freak

genetic freak

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What is the problem with his form?
 
DieYoungStrong

DieYoungStrong

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May 27, 2013
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Ok rocket scientists brethren. How do I teach my son to deadline? Just showing him form and correcting him has not been working, does anyone have any tricks to teach a newbie?
My gym has the big Rogue plates that mirror a 45 which is nice, but tried off the floor and off the rack and overall form is bad.
@DieYoungStrong I know you taught your son to lift, any tricks?

How old is he for starters? I've worked with quite a few Jr High and High School kids over the years getting them into strength and conditioning. I always say it takes about 2 years for a kid to learn how to lift.

My oldest is a freshman in HS now. Football Player. I started him in 6th grade with sprinting and speed work at the field, bodyweight stuff and very very light weights. I started lifting weights as a freshman for HS football at the school weight room. Really wasn't putting any weight on the bar until my junior / senior year. So since I have the background to teach him, I started him in 6th grade lifting the 5lb technique bars, squatting PVC pipe and trap bar deadlifts with bumper 10's - really the goal was to introduce him to the gym, get him into it, and start to learn and groove good movement patterns. My thought was that I couldn't really start loading up the bar with any kind of weight until my junior year; so if I could have him ready to start loading the bar freshman year - he'd have a big advantage over the average HS player who starts lifting as a freshman.

7th grade he started lifting a little more weight and starting to get it. He was squatting 135 for reps and benching around 65-75lbs. Still sticking with trap bar deadlifts but now he was getting 315 x 5.

8th grade he started getting stronger and weights started going up a bit. Spring of 8th grade he wanted to do the Jr High Powerlifting meet at his school, so I introduced him to deadlifts 12 weeks out from the meet- by now he was training for a year and a half so even though he struggled with deadlifts, he was sound enough that he wasn't going to hurt himself. He broke every USAPL Jr High State record for his age at the meet. Squat/Bench/Deadlift and Total.

Now he finished freshman football in the fall, and is into offseason training and getting ready to start peaking soon for the spring powerlifting meet. He will probably squat and deadlift 405ish and Bench 275ish. Not to shabby at all for a freshman, and more weight then I was lifting as a senior lol.

Start your kid with trap bar deadlifts for a year or so. Much easier to get into a good pulling position, and much safer if he gets way out of position. Make him pull in socks, make sure he's getting tight and braced and driving is armpits into his back pockets at set up, driving back on his heels to start the pull, and watch to make sure his not rounding his back to much getting to lockout. Once he gets to pulling 315 for reps on it with good form - you can start introducing the straight bar. The same setup cues go for deadlifts - it's just a lot more difficult to brace yourself into a comp deadlift vs the trap bar, so some gym skill level has to be there before you start doing them.

Work on bracing breathing with him. Deadlifts are dangerous with kids because their ability to get properly set up and tight and then brace for all the lifts just plain sucks for a few years when they first start lifting. Deadlifts will ruin your soul if your setup sucks. When working with kids/teen athletes, everything is risk/reward based on their lifting age at that time. Every kid develops differently. Some kids are amazing athletes on the field and are the worst lifters in the gym. Some kids look like tarzan in the gym, and play like Jane. Watch them and give them the right lifts for their skill level in the gym. Deadlifts are one of the last lifts to start playing with IMO.

Your son is a baseball and hoop player right? My honest opinion is that if those are his main sports - there's no reason to rush into deadlifts. Stick to the trap bar for now.
 
Lizard King

Lizard King

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He's 13 and I have been doing bar work with him or light weights, cable work etc.
He wanted me to show him how to dead and its just hard to explain/teach the motion to someone, especially a kid who.is arching his back to lift the weight.
I'll give the trap bar a try.
 
beefnewton

beefnewton

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Nov 11, 2022
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I'm basically a kid due to my low training age of only around four years. The hardest part for Deadlifts for me (took me a few years to finally "get it") was how to activate and use my posterior chain versus powering through with my lower back. I would think a kid would have a way easier time, though, because they haven't sat in an office chair for decades and learned bad habits yet. If I'm not mistaken, the body will naturally use the posterior chain anyway, and it's only through repeated years of bad movement that you "unlearn" things you came out of the womb knowing. So now I'm asking myself what I really said here with this post.
 
jawbreaker24

jawbreaker24

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Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
HardManifest

HardManifest

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Nov 21, 2022
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for me, I say fuck deadlifts. That shit is a lumbar injury in the making.
 
HDH

HDH

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Sep 30, 2011
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I would lower the weight as much as I had to, even if it was the bar or less. Nothing wrong with reps to start.

Once form is good, I'd slowly add the weight.
 
Cutt29

Cutt29

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Dec 29, 2016
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He's 13 and I have been doing bar work with him or light weights, cable work etc.
He wanted me to show him how to dead and its just hard to explain/teach the motion to someone, especially a kid who.is arching his back to lift the weight.
I'll give the trap bar a try.

Check out the starting strength five of six step method
 
genetic freak

genetic freak

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Dec 28, 2015
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He's 13 and I have been doing bar work with him or light weights, cable work etc.
He wanted me to show him how to dead and its just hard to explain/teach the motion to someone, especially a kid who.is arching his back to lift the weight.
I'll give the trap bar a try.
With an overhand grip, you can take a towel and put it across his chest, pinching each side under the armpits when in the starting position. Have him focus on keeping the towel in place while pulling just the bar or bar and really light weight. The minute he arches the towel will fall out.
 
rot-iron66

rot-iron66

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Oct 30, 2022
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for me, I say fuck deadlifts. That shit is a lumbar injury in the making.
All Powerlifts have the potential for injury (SQ, DL, Bench, OHP, etc). When taught and done correctly, that potential goes way down.
If he has an interest, keep teaching it, be patient, use baby-weights. The Olympic lifters in China start out when they are like 5, using just a PVC pipe, sometimes for years.
(Until they get it). Once form is perfected, only then they start adding light weight...
 
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