The Deadlift, Why it is Important from a CrossFit View.

By Chris Roccisano

The deadlift is called the ‘King of Mass-Builders’ in some fitness circles. Understanding why it is important might sway your reasoning mind to do them more often. At a face-value point of view, the deadlift is an easy movement, all you have to do is pick the weight off the ground. But the way you do that is a little more complex and making sure that all muscles are firing together can seem hard when you are first learning this lift. In this lift we can see amazing growth throughout the whole body from the core, back, glutes, hamstring, grip and so many other muscle groups. Engagement of all these muscles in a unified way is where the magic exists, so let’s have a look at why more muscle utilization is best for us.

When it comes to building muscle and becoming stronger we need to understand that we can do this in a few ways, we want to work the muscle we are aiming to grow and we also want to provide intensity (the amount of weight) and volume (the amount of reps and set) so that together we can stress the muscle in a way that will then help it grow. So instead of focusing on one muscle at a time we can perform the deadlift and hit nearly every muscles in the body in one go, it is the biggest bang for buck exercise going around, it even utilizes more muscles at once than the squat does. This can save you time per session which allows for more session per week to happen and that’s how a stronger ‘you’ is made in the long run.

Adaptation, in reality the deadlift should be your biggest lift, putting that much stress on your body due to the heavy weights will allow your body to adapt and normalise that load, which means that everything you do in CrossFit will feel a lot lighter, including your WODs. Let’s do a little example. Let’s say you have a 1 Rep Max (1RM) of 250kg in the deadlift. If we work backwards from these numbers we can see that doing a WOD like 17.4 which was 16.4 which had 55 deadlifts at 102kg in it. At a 1RM of 250kg, the percentage of the WODs weight is roughly 40% of your 1RM which means that 102kg is your warmup and that’s the weight that you would put on the bar for the WOD. Imagine that, imagine that every time the coaches showed you a WOD all you ever had to put on the bar was your warmup amount, how easy would the WOD be? How many extra round would you get out?

So I invite you over this next two-month period at VSC to really enjoy the focused element which is the deadlift. Have fun with it, there is no better feeling than lifting some heavy weights off the ground and learn as much as you can about it, so you can use the new techniques (and new strength too) in your next WOD. Like always, please feel free to come see me or any of the other coaches in class for a more in depth look at the deadlift because you will soon see the changes in your strength and understand why it is one of the coaches’ favourite movements to prescribe.

But for now, stay strong have a great week, a very happy and safe Easter, and I will see you all in class, 

Ciao for now, be awesome, Coach Chris.



"55 Reasons Why The Deadlift Exercise Is The Best Of All Time". The PTDC. N.p., 2017. Web. 10 Apr. 2017.

"Deadlifts: The King Of Mass-Builders?". N.p., 2017. Web. 10 Apr. 2017.

Johnson, Jake. "The Vast Importance Of Deadlifting - I'm Jake". I'm Jake. N.p., 2017. Web. 10 Apr. 2017.