The deadlift is a weight training exercise which requires a loaded barbell or bar to be lifted off the ground. Unlike other weight lifting moves, a deadlift only requires the bar to be brought to the level of the hips, then lowered (but not released) to the ground by a controlled move. It is a key powerlifting exercise.
One of the most overlooked parts of the deadlift is the grip. There are two key factors that lead to a strong deadlift grip. These are your grip choice and grip strength. Here are some deadlift grip tips to move you along in your workouts.
Double Overhand Grip
When it comes to a strong deadlift, grip is key. There are 3 recognized grips that you can utilize to improve the deadlift. The first grip, is the 'double overhand grip'. This grip requires the lifter's hand to lift the bar with both palms facing the lifter. It is the most basic grip that you can use, but it is effective. It is the grip that most lifter's start on and can feel the most comfortable.
Double Overhand Deadlift Grip
The 'mixed grip' is where you hands grip in an opposite manner. One hand grips with its palm facing the lifter, and the other hand grips with its palm facing away. This is often seen as the grip that will allow you to hold onto the bar for longer. Using this grip will cover up any weakness in your grip, as the bar load can slightly shift from one hand to the other as you lift. However, it will not help you develop your grip strength further.
Mixed Deadlift Grip
The final popular deadlift grip is the 'hook grip'. Hand placement for this grip is the same as the double overhand, however, the difference comes in the placement of the fingers. This grip requires you to hold your thumbs between the first 2 fingers of your hand and the bar. This grip is the grip that you will most commonly see if you watch weight lifting in the Olympics. It can lead to an incredibly strong lift, but does require the lifter to have built up and maintained their grip strength.
Hook Deadlift Grip
You may be tempted to try and strengthen your grip through isolated exercises, away from the barbell. But this will only get you so far. Strengthening your grip as you deadlift is the only steadfast way to build up your grip in a way that you can instantly apply to your lifts.
Although it may seem unorthodox, the perfect way to improve your grip strength is to perform deadlifts without chalk or lifting straps. Removing the chalk and straps from the equation, encourages you to grip harder and makes your hands work harder, which increases your grip strength much quicker than other ways.
One handed deadlifts, performed by placing your hand in the centre of the bar is also a quick and simple method of grip strengthening. A one handed hook grip is suggested and will allow you the most control. If you are wary of performing a one handed deadlift in the same manner as a two handed one, feel free to straddle the bar and perform the lift in a shallower manner. Either way your grip will thank you in the long run.
One-Handed Deadlift Straddling The Bar
Hopefully these deadlift grip strength tips will help you get a better grip on your deadlifts and have you smashing PRs in no time!