What is the best exercise to improve strength, muscle mass, and turn you into a total badass? That is the million dollar question isn’t it…

Here at Deadlift Potential, we have an answer for you. Can you guess what it is? No it’s not bicep curls. If you really want to get big and strong, leave the curls for the girls and head over to the deadlift platform.

The deadlift is the king of all exercises. When done correctly, the deadlift contracts more muscles simultaneously than any other barbell lift. Combining deadlifts with proper programming and a overall healthy lifestyle will increase strength and add muscle.

Conventional vs. Sumo

There are two main types of deadlifts: conventional and sumo. Conventional is what most people are familiar with, while sumo is more common among powerlifters and is rapidly gaining in popularity in the fitness world. We will go into more detail in a future article, but basically the conventional deadlift involves standing with your feet shoulder width apart, toes pointing forward and grip is outside the legs. The sumo deadlift requires the feet to be farther apart with the toes pointing out toward the plates, the hips are open, and the grip is in between the legs. The conventional deadlift tends to utilize more hamstring and lower back muscles, while the sumo is more hip and quad dominant.

Accessory Exercises

In addition to the conventional and sumo deadlifts there are many more exercises that are used to improve conventional or sumo deadlift strength and increase muscle mass. Exercises such as stiff leg deadlifts, deficit deadlifts, rack/block pulls, romanian deadlifts, pause pulls, and even good mornings are used to target specific muscle groups or weak points.