Deadlifts are the simplest barbell exercise, most likely the first, and still one of the best. The deadlift is done by simply grasping your free-weight bar(with as many weights as you can feasibly – not comfortably – lift and lifting up until your standing up with the bar hanging in front of you, arms extended. Continue reading on to know the surprising benefits of deadlifts.
Surprising Benefits of Deadlifts
1. Deadlifts can benefit posture
If you’re looking to work your back body, deadlifts are one of the most efficient exercises around. This is good news if you tend to slouch. “If you don’t have any injuries, deadlifts can help you develop a stronger back and lats so you can have better posture,” says Vicknair. It is added that they also put the glutes and hamstrings to work, which play a role in helping you stand up straighter.
2. Deadlift contributes to fat burning
Alwyn Cosgrove, a personal trainer, recently wrote about a study in which observed respondents were divided into three groups: the first group on a diet, the second on a cardiovascular diet, and the third on a diet, cardio, and strength training.
The group who was on a diet lost weight on average 6 kilograms over 12 weeks. The cardio group lost less than 7 kilograms (they had trained three times a week for 50 minutes). The third group lost on average almost 10 kilograms (44% and 35% more than the diet and cardio groups). So by lifting weights, the third group burned more fat than holding a diet or a combination of cardio workout and diet. Obviously, lifting weights will help you burn fat more efficiently, and in addition, you will shape your muscles.
3. Build a 3D upper back
So far, we’ve discussed the functional strength and lower-body benefits of deadlifts.
But ultimately, deadlifts change your entire body. They provide plenty of stimulation for your upper body, too.
After you deadlift for a couple of months, consistently, you’ll notice that your back is more muscular, especially your middle and upper back.
The reason is that when you lift hundreds of pounds off the floor, your thoracic spine (from the bottom of your ribcage to your lower neck) works incredibly hard not to flex (bend or fold forward).
And similar to hamstrings, many people tend to neglect their upper back. Deadlifts can help even the score, resulting in a more attractive, balanced, and robust upper body.
4. Increase real-life lift
One of the surprising benefits of deadlifts is to help increase real-life lift. When you do other lifting exercises, like a bench press, for example, you’re not doing anything you might really do in real life. When are you ever going to have the need to lay on your back and push something in the air unless you’re giving your two-year-old “flying lessons.”
The Deadlift develops the muscles you need to actually carry something, like a bucket of water, those heavy grocery bags, or your neighbor’s dining room table.
5. Likely lower the risk of injury
Just like any other movement, deadlifts are unsafe if you don’t perform them correctly.
But assuming you train smart and use proper form, deadlifts help to correct muscular imbalances, strengthen your back, develop muscles that protect your spine, and make your tendons tougher.
As a result, there’s a pretty good chance that getting stronger by deadlifting reduces your risk of many types of injuries.
6. Increase hormone levels
However, these are not hormones that will distract you emotionally and will slash you down. By doing 8 to 10 repetitions of the deadlift, you can help increase testosterone levels as well as the levels of growth hormone produced in your body. Testosterone increases muscle mass and aids in muscle repair, while growth hormone, which is produced in the pituitary gland, promotes tissue healing, muscle mass growth, and fat burning.
7. Increases grip strength
Assuming you deadlift without straps, heavy deadlifts require a strong grip.
When you build your strength using the deadlift, you also build a stronger supporting grip.
8. It’s time-efficient
You can get all of the above benefits by deadlifting once a week.
And if you’re performing 3-5 sets of 3-5 repetitions, resting 3-5 minutes between sets, then you’re spending somewhere between 12 and 30 minutes to exercise a majority of your muscle groups.
Call it 20-45 minutes counting a quick warmup and a few additional strength training movements, and you can see how deadlifts lend themselves to effective and time-efficient full-body workouts.
9. Cheap and easy
A lot of exercises require a lot of equipment, special shoes or whatever. Not the Deadlift. Just a bar with some weight. Pick it up. Simple. You can usually find free weights and a bar at a thrift store – or being given away by a friend – making it even cheaper.
10. Prevent injuries
The deadlift can prevent injuries just by increasing the strength of your muscles around critical tendons and ligaments. Strengthening joints with strong muscles is essential in preventing injuries, especially in the hamstrings and in the lower back.
If you are still considering whether a deadlift is the right exercise for you, try it without demanding and heavyweights. Over time, you can add weights, so your strength will grow hand in hand.