Stiff-leg/Romanian Deadlift

Performance Notes

An isolation movement targeting the hips and hamstrings. Unlike the regular deadlift, these are done with the legs knees locked straight or slightly flexed(Romanian), using far less weight. The lower back is locked too- the only bending occurs at the hips. Bend over, keeping your back arched, and lower the bar as far as possible without flexing the knees, then use the contraction of your hamstrings and glutes to come back up to an erect position. To reduce pressure on the lower back, the bar should stay in close, in fact dragging up your shins (which is a reason competing power-lifters who don’t like to show off scraped shins wear the same kind of socks as field hockey players!).

A variant of this exercise is on one leg with a dumbbell, which also works other muscles stabilizing the hips.