Do you want to know how to use the Romanian deadlift to build strength and size in the hamstrings and glutes? The Romanian Deadlift is a kind of exercise for developing joint and hip health, muscular endurance, and muscle growth.
In addition, many weightlifters, athletes, and weightlifters use this movement to develop overall mass and mass in their posterior chain. Romanian Deadlift (RDL) is an accessory lift having submaximal loads. However, it finds many flexible applications for many goals directed at strength.
Here are some tips and info on the RDL exercise or Romanian deadlift.
RDL Deadlift- Steps to Perform
- First, load a barbell and make sure your feet are shoulder-width apart with your toes forward. Your barbell should be over the shoelaces when you see it.
- Now bend and grab the barbell with a slightly wider grip than shoulder-width distance. Make sure you keep your shoulders over it, and your back must be straight. You can brace it as you stand up.
- As you set your back, you need to push your hips back and brace your body core as you maintain a straight back. Your knees need to be over your ankles.
- As the hamstrings contract, your back is straight, and the bar is slightly below your knee. You can stand up as you keep the bar near your body.
- Then, at the climax, you need to contract all your big muscle groups, including the glutes, core, and upper back. For this, you can flex from your back down to the glutes.
- Repeat the process.
These are the basic steps you must follow to perform the RDL exercise. For variations in the exercise, you can read further.
Muscles It Works
The Romanian Deadlift exercise helps to target different muscles just like a usual deadlift. However, it specifically targets the glutes and the hamstrings. Also, your knee angle remains inflected throughout the whole movement. The essential key is ensuring you feel your hamstring muscles stay loaded when you lower the lift. Thus, this ensures that you have the proper muscular development and mechanics.
1. Glute Muscles
The Romanian deadlift exercise helps to target the glute muscles with hip extension. The glute muscles participate in deadlifting, squat, and different human movements, like sprinting or jumping. These are some muscles that come as a target for the Romanian Deadlift. It is key to contracting the glute muscles for amplifying muscle strength, development, and engagement.
2. Lower Back Muscles
The lower back muscles are also a specific target for the Romanian deadlift exercise. Usually, lifters may take their soreness in the back as a sign of an improper exercise technique. However, it might be because of increased muscle damage to the muscles in the lower back. Note that the lower back muscles are not the only muscles you need to feel during exercise.
3. Upper and Middle Back Muscles
The Romanian deadlift helps develop overall strength in the back as the lifter needs to maintain a flat back. They also need to maintain a constant right torso as they do the whole movement. When the lifter lowers this weight, the lower back needs to work harder to resist any rounding of the shoulders and flexion in the spine. It is quite beneficial for preventing injury in the lower back. This increases overall strength in the back and improves posture control for distinct movements like sumo deadlifts, squats, and cleans.
4. Trapezoid Muscles
These muscles prevent the shoulders and the torso from rounding forward in the deadlift’s forward position. The traps aid the individual in getting a proper position back throughout the deadlift. The RDL exercise helps to increase the overall stability and strength of the trapezius muscles in the body.
This exercise targets the forearms as the trainer gets to grasp a loaded weight for a long time. This exercise will improve the muscle endurance and grip strength for power-based movements. These include pull-ups, cleans, and snatches, for example.
The Physical Skill It Improves
An improvement in pulling strength is an advantage of performing this exercise. Many athletes will perform this specific lifting exercise instead of the standard deadlifts. They do this to improve hamstring and glute strength. They also want to ensure they don’t load on their lower back because of glute isolation and a hamstring.
Many Olympic players can use Romanian deadlifts in their routine exercise to increase hamstring strength and back strength. In addition, they can get better techniques in maximal and near-maximal lifts as they increase muscle hypertrophy and positional strength.
Romanian Deadlift or the RDL exercise is also helpful in improving overall athletic performance. This is because it targets the whole body’s posterior chain. This is critical for improving running performance, power application, and an improvement in leg strength.
Incorrect Ways to Perform
Some people may not keep their torso and arms upright and straight. Also, this will increase the strain on your neck muscles. So, it is essential to make sure they stay upright, and you drop your shoulder blades down. Thus, this will help to stabilize your back and prevent you from straining your neck.
Some people don’t keep their back flat while performing the deadlift. Also, this can cause back injuries in the first few rounds of the exercise. You need to feel some tension that develops in your back and hamstring muscles as you do it correctly. Thus, this may happen specifically around your shoulder blades.
Keep your overall weight on your heels and push yourself through your toes. Also, make sure you reach through an extension of your glute muscles. Flex your glute muscles, and keep your ribcage downward to stabilize your lumbar spine. You need to keep in mind some things as you perform RDL exercises. Many people may commit mistakes like taking incorrect forms or too much load. Things like these will hamper progress and cause strains and injuries in the long run.
Modifications of RDL Exercise
Some modifications can target specific requirements of lifters and individuals doing the exercise. Following are some modifications to the RDL exercise.
1) Dumbbell Variation of RDL Exercise
You can use dumbbells with the RDL exercise to increase your hips and back stability. It is also convenient for people who don’t have a barbell available. The versatility of the exercise is a convenient option for weight lifters then. However, you do not use this variation in the Romanian deadlift for heavy loads. So, if you are looking for moderate lifting, you can use this deadlift to increase endurance and hypertrophy.
2) Kettlebell Variation of RDL Exercise
You can find kettlebells in different centers and fitness facilities with diverse applications. For example, you can find them in power applications, functional fitness, and movement training.
Using kettlebells with the RDL exercise will isolate the unilateral limitations. Also, this will increase your need to stabilize your back. Also, the RDL exercise using kettlebells may be a good movement for many kettlebell programs for training.
3) Unilateral Variation of RDL Exercise
The unilateral RDL exercise, or the single-leg deadlift, helps improve the unilateral development of the muscle. It also helps in increasing coordination, balance, and overall strength.
However, as you perform the deadlift with your feet, you may miss any movement, which can cause an imbalance of the muscles or asymmetries. So, you can see each leg in an independent range and use one leg simultaneously. Thus, you can enhance the overall movement and target your muscle imbalance, leading to overuse. It may also lead to injuries.
4) Snatch Grip Variation of RDL Exercise
The snatch grip RDL exercise is a variation of the barbaric RDL exercise. You can increase the overall grip width of the barbell depending on the grip positioning. This results in a dynamic increase in the overall trap and upper back engagement.
Many people use this technique in the Olympics as well. Also, it helps increase overall hip and back strength related to the snatch lift. It also improves the strength in your lower back and the overall control you need for your heavy back squatting. This is how you can increase your overall stability. This variation is helpful if you want to add more challenges to your RDL exercise.
Last word on the Romanian deadlift
These are some facts and tips that you need to know about the Romanian Deadlift exercise. The RDL exercise is popular among professional athletes and Olympic lifters.
However, you can also use this exercise to increase your overall back, hip, and leg strength. Also, it helps improve overall stability to your core, which helps you increase your endurance and flexibility. You can apply this exercise if you are a runner or someone with a demand for lifting weights.