Squat More Than You Deadlift? Part II On How To Fix That

May 2nd 2019

Is having a stronger squat compared to your deadlift a bad thing? If you have read my part 1 post about why your squats are more than your deadlifts, you may want more information on how to improve your deadlift numbers. So, here are three more training strategies on how to increase your deadlifts so that they are greater than your squats.

Squats are stronger than my deadlift

There are many reasons why your squats are stronger than your deadlift - leverages, training experiences, etc. It is not uncommon to have this disparity but a majority of do have a stronger deadlift than squat. Here are some strategies in order to help you improve your deadlift:


  • Stop worrying about short term results
  • Train with stronger deadlifters
  • Use mental imagery


Stop worrying about short term results

There is one reason why you may feel anxious about your squats being stronger than your deadlifts. You are training really hard and you do not see any results. In a few weeks, you may not notice any changes in strength. For many elite level lifters, they are able to practice their patience and know that short term results are not what they want to achieve. They are nice to have, some nice icing on the cake. But the real prize is the long term goal - what it is that you are training for?

If they are prepping for a meet, the biggest goal is to hit the maximum weight they can deadlift. Positive training results may help predict whether or not you will do well in the competition but it is not a deciding factor. Making sure you are consistent while putting in the hard work will help you way more in the long run. This can span anywhere from six months to a year in advance in preparation for a contest. Even Ed Coan prepped his training cycle a year in advanced before he crushed all the powerlifting world records.

For a less experienced athlete, it may be hard to understand or even conceptualize how to not focus on the short term. It is frustrating to not improve every workout like you used to. I get that - I was once a strength training beginner. The ecstatic feeling of cloud nine you get whenever you crush workouts and improve every single day is great. You feel like a king, a strong warrior.

Until that comes to a halt and you seem to not be any to progress anymore for your deadlift. So, is something wrong when that happens? No, but you do need to think about why and the next steps in order to continue progressing. If one style of programming worked forever, we would not have so many programs.

So, the bottom line is to stay focused during all your workout session but also do not place so much stress on the short term goals. Remember that everything you are doing today is slowly helping you being a stronger athlete and in the future, it is prepping you up for a beast deadlift.

Train with stronger deadlifters

There is a reason why all the strongest athletes in the world know each other. You have also noticed that they train with each other as well. This is no coincidence.

With all the positive training energy in the air, having stronger lifters in the gym will be extra motivating for you to get better. Here are a few reasons why:

You are now a student

As a student, you are willing to receive knowledge as it is gifted to you. As a result, training with stronger lifters will give you the perfect opportunity to ask questions in order to soothe your itch for answers. When you have specific training questions, searching them online may give you some of the answers but it may not give you everything you want. Having someone with you that experienced and went through the exact journey can make the knowledge transfer a whole lot smoother. In addition to that, it is free as well, something that many lifters across the world would need to pay for in your position.

Part of a strong community

When you train with stronger lifters, you are the elite 1%. Perhaps even the elite 0.1%. This is a very small group of lifters and bonds of friendship and comradery will last a lifetime. These are some of the strongest lifters you may meet in your life and it would be an asset to have them in your training squad. Individually, I am sure everyone is a great and strong person. As a team, the dynamic shifts a little to help train everyone to be better than they were before. The weaker lifters get trained by the strongest lifters. Everyone has each other’s backs and can help each other with anything, even outside of the gym. It is a true group that does not break away easily, after enduring all the tough training sessions together.

Mental imagery helps

Some of the greatest lifters will attest to this method. All they can think about is how much they want to break a world record. They think about their training all the time. As a aspiring lifter, this is helpful for you.

Many experiments were done where athletes would think about a sport and be asked to perform. The hypothesis that these researchers were testing is if athletes that used mental imagery would have any impact on performance. In this experiment, scientists were testing whether or not mental training mattered or not in shooting free throws in basketball. There were three groups - one that practiced and was told to think about practice all day, one that did not practice and did not think about practice, and the final group did not practice but were told to think about shooting free throws all day.

When the results came in, the first group did the best. The second group did very poorly. And the third group? The third group did nearly as well as the first group even though the third group did not practice at all.

To take this gold nugget of knowledge and apply it to deadlifting, lifters can use this to their advantage. If you truly want to improve your deadlift, spend time to imagine your setup, how you felt during every part of the movement, and of course, succeeding in the deadlift. Constantly have these positive images and replays run through your mind. Your mental clarity and focus will help you surpass these physical limitations.

Final Thoughts

If you train hard, both your squats and deadlifts will improve. Initially, some lifters may have a bigger squat than their deadlift. Over time, this imbalance will naturally correct itself and you will eventually have a stronger deadlift than squat. One reason being is that for the most part, the deadlift is a smaller range of motion compared to the squat. So, quit worrying whether or not your squats are stronger than your deadlift. Start to focus on training consistently with effort and your results will speak for themselves. Remember, let us make the world stronger every day.

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