Dead Lifting in Pennsylvania
After the Delaware Kettlebell Workshop, I added dead lifting to my work routine. Dr. Mark Cheng, RKC TL spent so much time on this primal movement at our seminar and I felt that I benefited so much from that investment that I went back and scoured Power To The People for every tidbit I could about "Hard Style" training in general and dead lifting in particular.
I felt very strongly that I needed to add these pulls to my program so I decided to consult with Marty Gallagher, author of The Purposeful Primitive, and my strength coach. Please keep in mind that the last time I did dead lifts would have been about 1986. Quite awhile ago and even though I trust what I learned with Doc Cheng I wanted to have a power lifting guy look at it too.
I talked to Marty about it and he said why don't you come up so I can take a look? I was a bit concerned when he casually mentioned that Mark Chaillet may be around to take a peek as well. I knew Chaillet's reputation as a dead lifter extraordinaire but until I went back and looked at Purposeful Primitive I had forgotten just how amazing his performance. Mark is the only person to conventionally dead lift over 800 pounds post-age 40. Uh oh I thought. (Actually I said this out loud) This is gonna suck to pull in front of these two. Marty assured me that all Chaillet would be looking at was my form. As a technician, Marty said, "Mark won't notice what's on the bar. Good I said because there won't be much to see:)
So I warm up a bit with some joint work and am feeling pretty self conscious. The analogy would be Tiger Woods helping me with golf. That's the quality of this pair. Marty puts a plate on each side and says "OK let's see." Right away there are corrections. Minor ones so I feel pretty good. A lot of it was being nervous. I made some quick adjustments and then added more poundage. Feeling better and they are liking my dead lifts. A few more adjustment. Ultimately they send me on my way with a narrower stance, slower hips, a more upright back and that was about it. These three corrections made a world of difference and will help me make Marty's secret predication come true about my ultimate dead lift max.
Sandy Sommer, RKC, Towson MD