So the deadlift, from a full-body functional standpoint, is probably the most
important exercise humans can do. It involves some of the most difficult muscles
to engage with weights. A lot of people don’t do the deadlift because there are
a lot of injuries associated with it. But with X3, because of
variable resistance, the chances of injuries are
I highly recommend taking this exercise seriously, and you can develop an
incredibly strong back, even if it’s compromised.
I have two hemorrhaged discs from rugby when I was in university. So, I don’t
feel any pain in my back whatsoever. I have the same feeling in my back that I
did when I was a 13-year-old kid. Nothing. And even with those chronic injuries,
now the injuries are still there, I can’t feel them because I’ve built so much
muscle in my back to support my spine.
That’s what I want for you. Now, a couple of keys to this. First, don’t use
straps. Your grip strength is a limit on what you can do in your deadlift. Leave
it that way. That’s the way it’s supposed to work. So when you use straps, you
get sort of a supernatural loading on your back that you couldn’t get with just
your grip. That, by definition, is a problem because the way we have evolved for
tens of thousands of years, depending on how you look at it with pre-homosapien,
maybe millions of years of evolution, brought us to this point.
Your grip is a limit to what you can place on your back. And it’s a limit for a
If you want to be able to grip it better, do the movement without straps, and
you’ll build your grip strength. If you use straps, you build up your back, and
you ignore your grip strength which makes the problem even worse.
Now, if you have like an injured hand or you can’t close your hand correctly,
that’s a completely different story. But for all those who are fully ambulatory
and have use of their hands, forget the straps. Now, we don’t recommend the
switch grip or the Olympic grip, as some call it. We do a double overhand
because when it gets too heavy, you can just put the bar down. Whereas in a
lift, you may drop the bar when you’re lifting regular weights. So we don’t have
the same limitations.
The scapula are in two different positions when you have an Olympic grip, and
that ultimately gives you uneven biomechanics. We’d rather you have both hands
pronated. So you grab on the bar like this and get equal loading on both
To set up for the deadlift, put the doubled band on the ground and the ground
plate on top of it, aligning the middle of the ground plate with the middle of
the band. Grab the bar with an overhand grip, with the band aligned with the
middle of the foot.
Once you step on the platform, make sure your toes are at the edge or the front
of the plate so that your center of gravity becomes the middle of the plate. As
you begin to move, make sure your back is straight, not curved in either
direction, but straight from the base of the neck to the pelvis.
At no point in this exercise should there be any slack in the band. So, we still
need to keep constant tension through each and all of the repetitions. Keep in
mind you’re not pulling the bar from the ground but from just below the knee. So
at the bottom position, you want to keep a little bit of tension, and then
before you lose tension, you reverse direction and start the next repetition.
Many who are doing a standard weightlifting deadlift try and get by the weaker
range of motions very quickly. Sometimes when there’s a rubberized floor,
they’ll bounce the weight off the ground and try and get it moving again via
momentum. Now, when you’re using variable resistance, there’s no momentum. Zero.
You can forget about that.
The abrupt movements add to the risk. So, it may be better to pick a lighter
band and go slowly through that weaker range of motion. And you’re not trying to
bypass any part of the movement because that’s gonna keep you safest. That’s
going to ensure you’re firing the right muscles in the right order. And it’ll
keep you progressing at the fastest rate with your X3 use and
building muscle as quickly as possible.
You can see that Sarah is standing up to propel the bar upward. This is the
movement, but she isn’t pulling with her arms or really her lower back, she’s
hinging at the hips and driving the bar up with her glutes. Stabilizing muscles
are firing all over the body. The hamstrings, the Quadratus muscles, even
muscles in your neck … different places in your back, all stabilization
We talked about earlier how beneficial that is. You also wanna make sure that
the supporting muscles of the neck, the trapezius muscles, are always engaged in
controlling the shoulders so they don’t slump forward because once they do, the
back will start rounding. You do not want to do that. That is poor form, and
that could cause an injury. You also do not lock out the knees at the top.
Remember, we still need to keep constant tension. You want to maintain this
through the entire movement.
Traditional deadlifts with weights carry a lot of associated injury or risk of
injury. These injuries typically occur at the bottom of the movement, sort of
where your back is most bent, or you’re most hinged at the waist, of course,
because of the variable resistance you’re using a lower weight in this position.
And you’re only fatiguing in this position when you’ve already fatigued the
other ranges of motion with a higher level of force.
The chances of injury with X3 are very low, and this exercise is one of the most
important. So, you’re getting the best of both worlds when doing the X3
deadlift. Don’t ignore the diminishing range with this. Sometimes when people go
to fatigue with full repetitions, it’s easy to just put the bar down at the end
of that movement. And this is true of all movements, but it’s harder with the
deadlift because more musculature throughout your entire body is being used.
You’ve got to stay motivated. You’ve got to truly go to fatigue in all ranges of
emotion. It’s very hard to do. I understand why people quit early, but I’m
telling you, see it through to the end because that’s the part that counts the