Deadlift on a Smith Machine ? 5 Facts & Tutorials

The deadlift on a smith machine is considered one of the “big three” exercises in powerlifting. The smith machine deadlift has the potential to be one of the most efficient exercises in one’s workout arsenal if it is performed correctly.

You can now safely perform the deadlift using a smith machine while reaping the incredible benefits of doing this compound exercise.

This article will lead you through a comprehensive and in-depth walkthrough of all you need to know about the smith machine deadlift.

What Exactly Is a Deadlift?

A deadlift is a great option when looking for a good full-body exercise.

A deadlift is one of the most effective compound movements and should be incorporated into anyone’s workout routine.

Bodybuilders who want to focus on a specific muscle group can do so with the help of the Smith machine deadlift.

Beginners, casual gym-goers, and lifters who want to limit the volume added to the other muscle groups during leg workouts can all benefit from switching to the Smith machine deadlift instead of other squat variations.

Full deadlift tutorial

Muscle Groups Worked by the Smith Machine Deadlift

When performed with proper form and sufficient repetitions, deadlifts are an excellent way to train the stability and strength of the core muscle for a challenging upper ab workout.

When you pull weight first from the floor to a lockout position, you recruit various other muscles besides the biceps, triceps, and lats.

Most of the work for picking up a barbell off the floor goes to the quadriceps, knees, and hamstrings. The back, glutes, and hamstrings work well when you carry the barbell from the knees to the lockout position.




The Smith Machine Deadlift: How to Do It

  1. Place the bar on the Smith machine’s safety catches at their lowest setting, stand behind the bar with the weights in which your feet will go, and lift (about hip-width apart).
  2. First, make sure that both of your feet are securely planted on the elevation box or weights. Next, grab the bar with an overhand grip and hold on as tightly as possible to the area outside your shins.
  3. Lower yourself until your shins become perpendicular to the floor while maintaining a completely erect spine.Try to avoid hunching over by keeping your chest out and your head up. You can now start hauling yourself upwards. You can perform a push-up by bending at the knees and putting the bar between your feet.
  4. Move your hips forward and squeeze the glutes once the bar nears your knees, keeping your back straight the whole time. Halt once your hips are neutral; don’t go all the way to a full lockout.
  5. Maintain a tight, engaged, and firm body by squeezing your glutes. Just one rep, right here.While keeping the hips back and bending at the knees, lower the bar by allowing it to come down slowly while bending at the knees.
  6. When the bar reaches the floor, pause for a moment, then repeat the movement for the desired number of repetitions.

woman pink shirt performing a deadlift on a smith machine


Deadlifting with a Smith machine: Avoid These Common Mistakes

A common and potentially fatal error made by those attempting to deadlift on an angled smith machine is to stand facing the machine instead of the bar. It’s a recipe for lower back pain because of the extreme bending of the hips.

Too much pressure is put on the vertebrae when the back is arched, increasing the risk of injury. You can keep your spine neutral and perform a proper deadlift by keeping your head in a fixed position.

Misalignment between the legs or feet. Separate your feet to a distance of about shoulder or hip width.

Injury to the spine can result from having rounded shoulders. Maintaining good posture and a neutral spine can be accomplished by drawing the shoulder blades back and down the back.

Distant bar to shins is a problem. If you keep the bar at least an inch away from your shins, you can avoid arching your back and hurting your legs.

A bar jerk. It’s a perfectly natural response to the increasing force of the weight, but it’s also a sure way to hurt yourself. Pull in your abs and push off your heels to move.


Advantages of Doing Deadlifts on a Smith Machine

Using a Smith machine to perform deadlifts is preferable to using a barbell. You can substitute a Smith machine for a barbell if you don’t have one, but that’s the only difference.

If you are starting, it is recommended that you use a Smith machine with a straight bar path to learn the correct mechanics and maintain a correct bar path.

The Smith machine deadlift offers the same advantages as barbell deadlifts in developing a strong lower body. Your quadriceps, your entire posterior chain, your forearms, and your grip could all benefit from this.



The Top Alternative Workout to the Smith Machine

Romanian Deadlift

Any leg-building routine worth its salt will include Romanian deadlifts. Plus, you can use them to boost your performance in the traditional deadlift.

By performing the Romanian deadlift on a Smith machine, you can reduce the complexity of the movement while simultaneously increasing muscle activation. All fitness levels can benefit from this routine.

You can achieve a strong back with the help of the Romanian deadlift (RDL). It’s a deadlift with a greater emphasis on hip flexion than knee flexion.

A standard barbell will do for this exercise. However, a guided bar is used for the Romanian deadlift on the Smith machine.

It is an excellent way to strengthen your glutes, hamstrings, back, and calves because it is a movement in the body’s posterior chain.

However, the glutes and hamstrings are the primary muscles worked.


tuto romanian deadlift


The proper form for a Romanian deadlift on the Smith machine

When using the smith machine stations, here is how to perform a Romanian deadlift:

  1. Set the height of the Smith bar so that it is just above the knee.
  2. To avoid straining your back, you should set your feet 15 degrees further apart than your shoulders.
  3. Raise your chest and tighten your abs to generate tension throughout your entire body.
  4. Put your hands outside your thighs and grab the bar with an overhand grip.
  5. Lats can be “packed” by externally rotating the shoulders, which is the inverse of a shrug.
  6. Keep your spine neutral, chest up, and knee bent while pushing your hip back.
  7. RDLs are done with the plates held at a depth just below the knee and not brought down to the floor.
  8. Alternatively, you can reverse the rep by thrusting your hips forward and lifting your chest. Do this for 3–6 sets of 6–15 reps.


A Smith Machine Sumo Deadlift

Compared to the sumo deadlift with a barbell, the smith machine sumo deadlift version is more manageable. The Smith machine is the gym’s most stable and secure option compared to other deadlifts. In addition, it’s perfect for someone who is just starting.

For the first few weeks of your training, the smith machine is a good place to start deadlifting.


man performing a sumo deadlift at the gym

The Smith Machine Sumo Deadlift: How to Perform It

  1. Put a barbell in the rack’s bottom tier, stand tall with your feet twice as far apart as your shoulders, and your toes turned out slightly.
  2. To squat, turn your hips outward and bend forward from the waist while keeping your back straight.
  3. Use an overhand or mixed grip on the barbell, with your palms facing inward and your hands about hip to shoulder width apart.
  4. Hold your breath, brace your abs, and lift the bar as high as possible while keeping your knees bent.
  5. Hold for a few seconds, then release your hold and lower the bar back to the starting position as you exhale.
  6. Perform as many repetitions as you can.
  7. Raise your hips and your shoulders together.
  8. As you move, maintain a straight neck and back.

Points to remember

If you want more reps, rest the barbell on the ground for a moment between sets.
Do the repetitions slowly and deliberately.
Maintain an upright posture by lifting your chest as you move.

Reasons to perform sumo deadlift on the Smith Machine

With the Smith machine’s motion controls and safety features in place, it’s a risk-free option. Asymmetry can occur when one of your arms is consistently stronger than the other. The smith machine is useful for regulating this discrepancy.
The smith machine is useful for rehabilitation when performing sumo deadlifts.


Final Thoughts

The deadlift on a Smith Machine is not a novel workout. They’ve existed for a long time. On the other hand, the smith machine deadlift has been getting a lot of attention as of late thanks to its many advantages to gym goers and bodybuilders.

The smith machine deadlift has the potential to be one of the most beneficial exercises if performed correctly. You should try this exercise to see possible gains with a massive lift like the deadlift. The outcomes will exceed your expectations, and you will soon be reaching your strength targets.




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