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How Often Should I Deadlift – Frequency, Methods, and Benefits Explained

Aug 27, 2018

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There have been many times where I’ve asked, How often should I deadlift?

Wee know that deadlifting is the king of all exercises, but have you ever asked yourself: “how often should I deadlift?

No matter which type of fitness you’re involved with, there is most likely an emphasis on the importance of the deadlift.

Whether it’s Olympic lifts, bodybuilding, or CrossFit, all of these weightlifting styles show a great respect for the benefits of deadlifting.

The big question is how often can or should you deadlift?

Well, that depends on a few things such as volume, weight, and style.

Volume is a measure of reps x sets which influence how heavy you are lifting.

Which then can also be influenced by the style of deadlifting you are using.

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Different Methods with the Deadlift

Those who ask how often should I deadlift normally do so because they dislike the monotony of the movement.

But, listed below are some of the most common types of deadlifts.

With these various types of deadlifts, you will have a better reason for updating your frequency.

However, if you’re looking for very specific content focused on the different types of deadlifts and the muscles that they target then check out our other blog post here: What Muscle Groups Do Deadlifts Work

Aside from the article above, here’s some information and some of the more popular forms of deadlifting:

Sumo Style Deadlift

There are many different methods involved with the deadlift.

There’s the sumo style deadlift.

Now, the sumo style deadlift has a wider stance with the hands gripping the bar between the legs.

Also, the sumo is known for being more forgiving on the lower back.

Below: Watch How to Properly Sumo Deadlift

Photo: Bodybuilding


Conventional Style Deadlift

The next type of deadlift is the conventional style deadlift.

The conventional deadlift has a more narrow foot stance (roughly shoulder-width apart).

Then, you will position your hands near the outside of the feet.

Below: Watch How to Properly Conventional Deadlift

Photo: Starting Strength


Kettlebell Deadlifts

The last major type of deadlifting that needs mentioning is the kettlebell deadlift.

There are many variations of the kettlebell deadlifts and these two major types are:

The double kettlebell suitcase technique

This style has the lifter deadlifting with a kettlebell in each hand performing a deadlift.

Photo: Onnit


The 2-handed kettlebell deadlift:

This style has the lifter lifting on kettlebell from between their legs using both hands.

The style of deadlift you choose can affect how much weight you can lift.

This is, of course, dependent upon your physical structure such as long femurs vs short femurs.

But typically more people can pull more weight using the traditional deadlift vs the sumo.

Basically, the kettlebell deadlift can hold a candle to either so it’s not even close when looking strictly at weight lifted per rep.

Furthermore, lifting heavy will definitely be a determining factor in how often one should deadlift.

Photo: Onnit


The Many Benefits of the Deadlift

The many benefits of the deadlift would increase such as:

  • Testosterone Production
  • Growth Hormone Production
  • Fat Burning
  • Activates Multiple Muscle Recruitment
  • Increases Grip Strength
  • Increases Bone Density
  • Strengthens the Core and Back Muscles

Just based on these benefits alone, you would think that it would be great to do deadlifts all the time.

But, like everything else in life, too much of a good thing can turn out to be bad.

Take water, for example, you need it to live, your body needs it to function properly, but too much water consumption can result in death due to an over toxification from water known as hyponatremia.

Yet, I digress.

Back on track here…

You must take into account volume.

Not only look at how much weight you’re pulling per rep but look at how many reps and how many sets you’re performing.

Or you could try and find the answer by performing a simple Google search.

Fair warning though, you will definitely come up with many different answers.

It could make your head spin.

Fitness expert and coach Jason Ferruggia spoke about the subject on his site even mentioning that some strength coaches have taken the deadlift out of their recommended lifts for clients.

The reason? It’s too taxing on the body and requires lengthy recovery times.

Then there’s the opposite end of the spectrum, such as Strength and Fitness coach Dean Somerset, who outlines a deadlift program that covers 7 days a week in his T-nation article on the deadlift.

So, with all of this in mind…


How Often Should I Deadlift – What’s the right answer?

The truth of the matter is, there’s no right answer the fits everybody.

The simple fact that each human on this planet is so different from the next can make things such as correct training volume extremely hard to pin down.

For more information, you can also read the 4 Benefits of the Trap Bar Deadlift Over Conventional Deadlifts.


How Often Should I Deadlift? Determining your Deadlifting Frequency

Well, how do you feel?

Are you recovering well?

In a sense, genetics, adequate sleep, proper hydration, proper nutrition and overall health can affect recovery times.

Also, remember recovery just doesn’t involve your muscles, your nervous system needs to recover as well as your ligaments, tendons, and joints.

If you’re gassed on Wednesday from performing deadlifts on Monday, then, the thought of pulling heavy weight from the floor makes your hamstrings shake in fear, rest.

Also, don’t forget that for added grip support and grip strength… you need

The Dark Iron Fitness Leather Suede Lifting Straps

If you’re eager to get out and deadlift again and your body feels good, go for it!

Listen to your body and you can’t go wrong.

I hope this could answer the question ‘How Often Should I Deadlift?

For more information about frequency and optimization, check out the video below: