Am I deadlifting properly?

Dr. Matthew Starling here, and today I’m going to look a bit more at the particularities of the deadlift.

Two common things I see when people go down into a deadlift is that their shoulders and hips stay inline and there isn't much change. It all sort of stays in the unit, but the knees are shifting far forward. So if I'm doing my deadlifts like this, it's actually more of a squat than anything else. So if you're doing your deadlifts that way, well, you're not really doing a deadlift. You're not working the areas that you need to.

The second type I see frequently is not driving forward in the knees. People go down fine but then at the very end, there's a bit of a “butt wink.” Instead of keeping the back flat, the hips tuck under that way. The problem with this is you're going down, you're stable, stable, stable, and then at the end, it shifts, which means your low back is no longer protected.

On any given day people are lifting hundreds of pounds. The weight doesn't matter, when you go into an improper position and your low back isn't protected anymore, that's when you start to feel pain or tightness. The best way to go about this is to get evaluated so we can diagnose your patterns and help fix the problem beforehand.

Dr. Matt Starling, DC