What are the Differences in Technique Between a Squat and a Deadlift
Squats and deadlifts are excellent exercises that I regularly prescribe to patients with varying degrees of experience resistance training. Some of my patients have never been to the gym or lifted a dumbbell in their life. Others try and make it to the gym a few times per week for some general strength and fitness. Irrespective of weight lifting experience, I’ve noticed that a lot of my patients will struggle with the differences in technique between a squat and a deadlift. This blog will address these differences and will hopefully help not only my patients, but the greater community with their squatting and deadlifting.
Firstly, let’s run through the two exercises and the different loads they place on the body A squat (left) is a knee dominant exercise. This means that a lot of force is required at the knee joint to move the weight up and down. The main muscles utilised in a squat are:
The deadlift (right) is a hip dominant exercise. This means that a lot of force is required at the hips to move the weight up and down. The main muscles utilised in a deadlift are:
- Lower back
The big-ticket items to look for in squatting technique are:
- Body upright
- Shins forward
The big-ticket items to look for in a deadlift are:
- Body almost parallel with the ground
- Shins vertical
- Bum back like you’re sitting in a chair
I’ll often encourage my patients to go through this simple exercise (above) so they can better understand the difference in technique between the two lifts. I’ll ask my patients to cross their arms and shift back and forth between a squat and a deadlift.
George Dooley (APAM)
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