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Volume 1: The Top 5 Spartan Strongman Deadlift Variations

By Jack Lovett


By Jack Lovett, Strength Coach, 2 x Britain’s Natural Strongest Man and Owner of Spartan Performance

‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett, (owner of Spartan Performance). ©2011 All Rights Reserved

‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett. ©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www. Any physical activity carries with it an inherent risk. Spartan Performance and Jack . Disclaimer This e-book is offered for education and information purposes.P. Please consult your G. (owner of Spartan Performance).spartanperformance. cannot be held responsible for any injury that may occur whilst participating in the following exercises.3 Copyright Message All rights prior to following these (or any other) exercises. No part of this e-book may be reproduced (by any means) without the expressed written permission of Jack Lovett.

4 Table Of Contents: Introduction Chapter 1: Axle Deadlift Chapter 2: Trap Deadlift Chapter 3: Farmer’s Walks Chapter 4: Atlas Stones Chapter 5: Tire Flip ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack .co. ©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www. (owner of Spartan Performance).spartanperformance.

You can use these variations to build your own Deadlift Strength. 4 x Word’s Strongest Man Along with the excellent advice Andy and Elliot have given you in ‘Explode Your Deadlift’.5 INTRODUCTION The Deadlift is a fundamental exercise in all strongman athlete . ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett.spartanperformance. ©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www. in this book I will describe the top 5 ‘strongman Deadlift variations’ I incorporate into my athlete’s strength training programmes at Spartan Performance. As the legendary and sorely missed Jon Pall Sigmarsson add muscle to your posterior chain and develop athleticism. (owner of Spartan Performance). both in terms of developing overall strength and event specific training. "there is no reason to be alive if you can't do Deadlift"! Jon Pall Sigmarsson.

thus challenging the grip and forearms to a greater extent than standard bars. out from the core and through the hands. MMA fighters. Thus I incorporate them into all my athlete preparation whether they are Powerlifters. you are never going to complete the lift. power is generated from the ground up. if you can’t hold the bar.spartanperformance. but they are a frequent event in strongman contests. At 2” thick. As is often said. (owner of Spartan Performance). Downhill MTB. ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett. However. This extra thickness ensures the hands and fingers have less leverage when grasping the bar. Not only that. the IronMind Appollon’s Axle is my thick bar of Chapter 1: AXLE DEADLIFT During a Deadlift. smooth and non-revolving. a chain is only as strong as its weakest link. ©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www. Axle Deadlifts are a fantastic method to address this ‘weak link’. Rugby players or .

co. Middleweight MMA fighter using a double overhand grip ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett.spartanperformance. I look to incorporate fat bar Deadlifts into my athlete’s . ©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www. (owner of Spartan Performance). the method may vary.7 As previously mentioned. Depending upon the individual. For example. I look to have my MMA guys regularly use a double overhand grip to hold onto the bar.

©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www.8 Pro Middleweight MMA Fighter and Spartan trained John Berry This stresses the grip of the athlete even more. ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett. (owner of Spartan Performance) .co. With my Downhill MTB racers I may incorporate timed holds in the double overhand position in order to develop their grip endurance.

9 British Downhill Racer and Spartan trained Brad Craggs As previously mentioned. (owner of Spartan Performance).uk/ . ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Thus I have my strongmen train with them regularly. Axle deadlifts are a frequent event in Strongman contests. unless specified by contest rules (even then I don’t agree with their use) straps are not used on thick bars.spartanperformance. ©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www. However.

.which allows me to get more hips into the lift and keep my back straighter”. A well known example in the strongman world is Derek Poundstone. Poundstone comments that: “Pulling [conventional Deadlift] causes discomfort with the exception of a trap . Individuals with a history of lower back pain/injury often find Trap Deadlifts far more comfortable than Conventional Pulls. This puts the lifter inside the bar. ensuring the weight is closer to the lifters centre of gravity (COG). who in 2006 suffered a herniated lumbar disc.. Trap Bar Deadlift: Locked Out This position reduces the stress on the spine. (owner of Spartan Performance). It is a safe option for nearly everyone due to the handle placement being at the side of the lifter.. ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett. ©2011 All Rights Reserved Chapter 2: TRAP DEADLIFT The Trap Deadlift is a fantastic variation that I use with all new clients when introducing them to Deadlifting.

spartanperformance. (owner of Spartan Performance). 2 x Arnold Strongman Champion The Trap Deadlift also helps prepare strongmen for events such as the Farmer’s Walk and Car Deadlift ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett. 3 x .11 Derek ©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www.

©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www.12 US Strongman Brad Cardoza performing the Car Deadlift It is . you do not simply ‘squat’ the weight. ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett. important to ensure that whilst performing the trap Deadlift. your focus should be upon correct hip movement. Rather. (owner of Spartan Performance).spartanperformance.

This forces you not to focus so much on just the deadlift portion but on being efficient and fast with the pull to get it up as quickly as possible. (owner of Spartan Performance).co. I feel it has to do with the fact that besides the higher pick up.spartanperformance. it’s the easiest part of the event. no matter what your sport. ©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www. Again we need look no further than the elite of the strongman world for recognition in the value of Farmer’s Walks. Derek Poundstone says: “Heavy farmers are also a good way to increase your deadlift. However. Farmer’s Walks will build tremendous athleticism. it is a great addition to athlete training programmes. Then there's the pounding the lower back takes while you’re walking with several hundred pounds in each hand.” ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett. Farmer’s Walk’s provide less spinal stress when deadlifted as opposed to conventional . Farmer’s Walk at the 2009 British Natural Strongman Championship As with the Trap Deadlift.13 Chapter 3: FARMER’S WALK The Farmer’s Walk is a more strongman ‘event specific’ exercise as opposed to traditional gym lift.

co. grip strength. not just . as well as upper back. ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett. (owner of Spartan Performance). ankle strength. Vastus Medialis (VMO) strength. trap and core strength. anaerobic capacity. ©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www. Hence their value to all athletes is clear.14 Farmer’s Walk’s also deliver a full body blast that is fantastic for improving muscular endurance.spartanperformance.

rhomboids.15 Chapter 4: ATLAS STONES No exercise is better associated with strongman contests than the atlas stones. All whilst engaging your erectors. (owner of Spartan Performance). Max lifts with heavy stones are fantastic at developing hip extension. They are a tremendous Deadlift shoulders and pecs. . ©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www. Atlos Stone: Start Position ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett. However. explosive starting strength (simply to get them off the ground) as well as developing tremendous crushing strength in your arms. these fantastic pieces of equipment need not remain solely in the domain of the strongman.

uk/ .16 Atlos Stone: Top Position At Spartan Performance I find atlas stones to be of great use to my MMA guys.spartanperformance. (owner of Spartan Performance). Alistair ©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www. both for max lifts and lighter stones for repetitions. Strikeforce Heavyweight Champion and atlas stone fan ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett.

In particular this is a fantastic exercise for developing your posterior chain (erectors. ©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www. how will an 84kg opponent fare in a double leg takedown? ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett.17 Chapter 5: TIRE FLIP Tire work is another outstanding Deadlift ‘variation’ I incorporate into my athletes routines. endurance and explosive strength. stressing stabilising muscles in a way traditional barbell and dumbbell exercises can’t. there is not one muscle it does not . If my Middleweight fighters can tear through 5 explosive flips of a 350kg tire. flexibility. Like Farmer’s Walks and Atlas Stones. hamstrings) as well as leg drive. For all of these guys tire flipping teaches them to lower their level whilst shooting for a powerful takedown/tackle. All qualities that will work wonders for your Deadlift as well as athletic performance. (owner of Spartan Performance). Doing so in a uniquely functional way. Thus it is no surprise to see not only my strongmen and powerlifting clients flip tires. American Football and MMA athletes. but also my Rugby.

‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett. The position gives a near vertical line of pull and great stress to the bicep tendon.18 There are many articles and YouTube videos depicting incorrect tire flipping technique. The most frequent error has individuals adopting the ‘Bicep Tearing’ or Sumo style . ©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www. feet close to the tire and a sumo style back This sees the hands placed inside the legs. (owner of Spartan Performance). Bicep tendon tears are commonly associated with such flips.

©2011 All Rights Reserved .19 Incorrect set up for a tire flip ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett. (owner of Spartan Performance).co.spartanperformance.

generating an automatic forward lean into the . Start position – Lean the chest into the tire and move your feet about 2-3 feet back.spartanperformance.20 Below are the coaching tips I employ with my athletes: 1. ©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www. Tire Flip: Start Position ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack (owner of Spartan Performance). Grip the tire with hands positioned outside of the feet.

co. keep the hips low and drive the hips. (owner of Spartan Performance).21 2. Basically a power clean at 45 degrees. knees and ankles to full extension. Tire Flip: Triple Extension Position ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett. ©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www.spartanperformance. Triple extension – With the chin on the .

22 3. Tire Flip: Dynamic Knee Strike Transition ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack . Dynamic knee strike transition – Explode through the tire with a dynamic knee strike whilst dropping under the tire and moving the hands to an overhand position.spartanperformance. (owner of Spartan Performance). ©2011 All Rights Reserved

Slam – Once hands are repositioned drive through the tire in an explosive pressing (owner of Spartan Performance). Tire Flip: Slam ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack .spartanperformance. Ensure the athlete slams the tire down with as much force as possible.23 4. ©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www. .24 Tire Flip: End Position Look to start using some of the above strongman Deadlift variations into your training and watch both your lifts and your conditioning sky rocket. ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett. (owner of Spartan Performance). ©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www.spartanperformance.

Spartan Performance is a gym based in North East England. Also a competitive athlete himself. ©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www. Jack’s ethos is to maximise athletic performance in all As a sports performance specialist.spartanperformance. Jack is a regular contributor at Train Hard Fight Easy and Men’s Fitness Jack is the two-time and current British Natural Strongman Champion. catering to athletes from all For more information contact him via ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack .25 About the Author Jack Lovett is the owner of Spartan Performance (www. (owner of Spartan Performance).uk).

©2011 All Rights Reserved http://www.26 Train hard and stay strong! ‘Spartan Strength Secrets’ by Jack Lovett. (owner of Spartan Performance) .co.