Deadlift Cue: Bias To The Heel During The Slack Pull
In our deadlift setup, we need to hinge, we need to drive through our midfoot, and we need to keep our shoulders over the bar. But that is a lot easier said than done. I’ve started noticing though a trend that specifically I find many efficient sumo pullers are doing, whether they realized it or not, to accomplish all 3 tasks at once. Above I have 4 of my lifters with a full speed and slo-motion breakdown of their pulls (CLICK HERE). Sean is the most obvious, but what you can see is all 4 lifters in their setup, specifically during the slack pull, bias their center of mass back initially over their heels to a degree. This helps them to accomplish the task of keeping their hips back, aka the hinge. It gives them room to keep their shoulders over the bar versus biasing out in front. And then from there, you can see in the slo-motion video that it all compounds into their initial starting position being directly stacked over their midfoot. Especially in the sumo deadlift, as you wedge it tends to create forward momentum. So the cueing of slightly over biasing onto the heels initially allows their center of mass to shift to their midfoot as they go through the wedging process. In the case of these 4 lifters, all 4 have had issues at times of over wedging and shifting their center of gravity too far forward over their toes. And the correlating issue for each of them was actually starting too much over their midfoot during the initial slack pull. Because then once they wedge, the forward momentum carried their center of mass forward of their midfoot. Now does this mean everyone should do this, no, and I specifically have sumo pullers highlighted here as I see it is less common with conventional lifters. But what I do believe is if the common thoughts of hinge, drive through the midfoot, and keeping the shoulders over the bar are just not clicking, then simplifying your thought process to an initial bias to heels prior to wedging could be a helpful tool.