The deadlift isn't just for powerlifters. Because it's a total-body exercise that builds strength, it can improve sports performance too, according to a new paper in Strength and Conditioning Journal
. In fact, here are three variations of the classic move that can give you an edge on the court, the field, or even the slopes.
The best new exercises for every part of your body
Roll a barbell against your shins and grab it using an overhand or mixed grip, your hands about 12 inches apart. Stand with your feet about twice shoulder-width apart and your toes pointed out. Bend at your hips and knees; without allowing your back to round, pull your torso up, thrust your hips forward, and stand up with the barbell. Lower the bar to the floor, keeping it as close to your body as possible.
The greater range of motion allows you to move heavier loads, says Alwyn Cosgrove, C.S.C.S.Great for:
Football, rugby, wrestling
Place a dumbbell on the floor next to your right ankle. Bend at your hips and knees and grab the weight with your right hand. Without allowing your back to round, stand up with the dumbbell as you thrust your hips forward slightly. Lower the weight to the floor, and then repeat on your left side.
Get more from your arm workout with single-arm negatives
The imbalance of weight builds the stabilizing core muscles necessary for rotational or overhead sports, says Cosgrove.Great for:
Skiing, tennis, track-and-field throwing events
With your feet shoulder-width apart, roll a barbell against your shins. Bend at your hips and knees and grasp the bar using a shoulder-width, overhand grip. Keeping your back naturally arched and your arms straight, pull the bar up by thrusting your hips forward, straightening your legs, rising on the balls of your feet, and shrugging your shoulders. Lower the bar to the floor, and repeat.
Get a better body in just 5 minutes!Benefit:
This explosive lift extends your hips, knees, and ankles, which mimics jumping or sprinting, says Cosgrove.Great for:
Basketball, volleyball, Ultimate Frisbee