Why Are My Quads Sore From Deadlifts? What You Should Know

April 20th 2019

Come find out why your quads are sore from deadlifts.

The deadlifts can be done in either one of two stances - conventional or sumo.

If your quads sore from deadlifts, then there is a high possibility that you aren't just doing it right, or are you a beginner?

Here is the secret you must know!

Quads sore from deadlifts

Quad soreness from deadlifts is not uncommon. However, be sure that you are not getting soreness because you are new to lifting or because you have bad form. While you are engaging in advanced physical exercise like deadlifting, it is essential that you lift with proper form.

So, which are the common mistakes that affect essential deadlift?

New to lifting

Novice lifters are more prone to lifting mistakes in the gym especially with a technical lift like the deadlift.

Mistakes can easily be overlooked if lifters are not focused on what they are doing.

It is easy to get into a groove at the gym and coast through the workout.

However, to truly develop a mind-body connection, athletes must be able to distinguish among, adequate, great and poor form.

Bad form

If you are deadlifting like you squat, this is a big reason why you are feeling most of the burn in your quads.

The deadlift is supposed to be a posterior chain grower, even if it is a full body compound exercise.

It has the ability to change your life.

Here are some intricate details of why you may be experiencing bad form while doing deadlifts.

This could be a reason why you are feeling quad soreness.

• You Don’t Bend Your Knees Enough

Typical, a conventional deadlift needs a little knee bend, but not like that done during squatting, and enough to allow you to get to your bar.

Experienced barbell lifters agree that in case you do not bend your knees, then you are essentially doing a stiff bar deadlift.

Are you ready for that?

Normally, the deadlift is an exercise that should positively impact your physical experience.

But if you avoid standard deadlift cues, it may bring a worrying impact.

Also, bending your knees allows you to get into the right wedge with the hip below the chest as the hip will stay above the knees.

Denying yourself enough of knee bend can bring your hip too high, above the shoulders, and can assume the alignment out of the whack — which can fetch worrying impact.

That will ultimately add pressure to your lower back and may crush both the legs and the back.

It is important to note that flexibility may play an issue here if you are able to get into a great deadlift starting position.

Nevertheless, it is not bad to feel quad soreness from deadlifts.

• Also, you aim at successfully pulling up the weight.

Deadlifting involves pulling, but taking it as simple pulling will become dangerous hence putting your back at risk.

Don't take it as a mere pull;

It will raise your hip up faster than the shoulder which is worrying.

The right deadlift would have them move at the same time.

Just like it needs pulling, deadlift requires pushing too — so, concentrate on adding more force to the ground by the feet — while pushing yourself off the ground as you pull the bar back and up.

But in case your attention sinks much in pulling, you may end up missing on the tension part — which is vital and gives the back enough chances to round.

• Are you overextending at the top of the lift? Don't do it that way!

It is a problem itself in case you aren't able to fire the glutes actively.

It will end up adding extreme pressure to the lower back, and not making up for it.

That will eventually compel your pelvis far forward.

But instead, it is essential to have some oomph, while you finish with the hip up and not overextending to overarch the back.

In case you overextend, your lower back will come into play, which is not right.

What then will you do?

Are you at the gym and ready to begin with the deadlift, here is how you will get it going...

To finish your lift completely and upright, keep your knees locked as you squeeze the glutes.

That is a simple but very essential step with a range of motion that will make your exercise effective.

Don't extend it further or bring in your lower back.

Should I deadlift if I have sore quads?

It is perfectly okay to deadlift with sore quads.

Though some newer lifters may find it uncomfortable deadlifting with muscular fatigue, it is common in the strength training world.

Most beginners do not know what to do after experiencing quads soreness.

Veteran lifters go through similar challenges as well.

Is your quads sore making you feel like you don't want to proceed to deadlift today, or are you planning to go for deadlift on you sore quads and wondering whether it is the right thing?

Don't worry, here is what to do!

Delayed onset muscle soreness —, is the definition which often describes the soreness of your quads, and also the general muscle soreness that you feel after deadlift.

Quads soreness is a bit complicated, and it often ranges from moderate discomfort as it advanced to losing your ability to move effectively.

Soreness of your quads is an indicator for measuring the damage of your quads during a workout.

For instance, if you cannot sit on sore quads anymore, then the possibility is that you have extremely pushed your body’s limits as well as caused essentially heavy muscle damage.

Will A More Narrow Stance Hit The Quads More In Deadlifts?

The trap bar deadlift will hit your quads more in the deadlift. Then, followed by the sumo deadlift and then lastly the conventional deadlift.

Most lifters will justify that changing their deadlift styles will hit the quads more.

Some lifters will feel their quads being activated more during a sumo deadlift.

For others, this can happen during a conventional deadlift.

However, all these feelings are subjective.

The true answer is that the trap bar deadlift is the deadlift exercise that will work your quads the hardest.

It is essentially a reverse squat.

Your hips are low, require more dorsiflexion, require a more upright torso, and have the handles relatively high.

These are all signs that will prompt your body to lean forward and activate your quads more.

Overall, all the deadlift styles hit the quads to some degree.

If you are a newer lifter, you may feel some quad soreness from deadlifts more frequently. For me, after deadlifting for six years, I get them very rarely.


Quad soreness should not occur from the deadlift unless you are doing a trap bar variation, have bad form or are extremely weak.

Most experienced lifters suggest that you continue to stick by your program even if you do get sore quads from the deadlift.

Make sure to check your form and that you are doing a proper deadlift.

Excessively sore quads are not likely to occur, which means you are probably doing something wrong.

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