Sumo Deadlift – 585 x 7

by Kilo on February 7, 2011

I’m pulling sumo more and more these days. If you’re not familiar with the sumo deadlift, it is a stance variation where the hands are inside of the legs, versus the conventional deadlift stance where the hands are outside.

sumo deadlift

Sally from Gubernatrix

Sumo helps me stay more upright with how tall I am, but my sumo max so far is about 100 pounds behind my conventional pull. Neither one of them are equal to what this guy pulls for seven strong reps, however.

There are videos out there of Ed Coan pulling some insane weight sumo style, so don’t rule it out. I like it for something different and it seems better suited to my body.


{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Kris Wragg February 8, 2011 at 11:23 am

Sumo almost always tests better than conventional for me. Lately most of my lifting has been with a wide stance in my trap bar and also with very wide staggered stance with my dinnie rings.

PS. Lifting silly weights with dinnie rings will make you 73% more manly than lifting with a barbell. This is a fact, Adam Glass will verify it!


Kilo February 8, 2011 at 2:59 pm

What are you pulling on those Dinnies? Mine are going to be arriving at any time.


Kris Wragg February 9, 2011 at 1:40 am

Last time I tried for a max I pulled 212kg, I have done 180kg-ish for about 10 reps though.

I am a long way off the numbers Adam is pulling but I am slowly creeping towards the magic 333kg as I struggled with 160kg single when I first got them!


Patrick Tracy February 8, 2011 at 5:50 pm

I did sumo as a young lad…lo, those many years ago. It has not felt natural of late. I’m on a trap bar kick at present. Once I get to the limit of what can be loaded onto the trap bar (10 pounds away), I’ll have to evaluate my options. Dinnie Rings, huh…


laurie February 10, 2011 at 8:43 am

I hurt my low back doing conventional. My chiropractor suggested doing lifts with a wider stance, which made sense to me because I use a fairly wide stance if I’m lifting anything off the ground in real life. No low back problems since going sumo. I’ve played with foot position, and have moved them in over time; I don’t use the super-wide stance some powerlifters use. I’ve seen some call this a modified sumo stance. I put my legs just outside, even touching, my arms. This appears to be about how Ed Coan pulled. And if it worked for Ed Coan…

I recently devoured a copy of Starting Strength (Rippetoe and Kilgore), which advocates for the conventional stance. However, comparing my body angles sumo vs. conventional, my body is a closer match to the diagram angles in the book if I use the sumo stance than conventional. There’s also a picture of a tall guy using “proper” stance, and his back is so close to parallel to the ground that it looks like it might as well be a romanian deadlift. The guy in the picture is about the same body angles as me. It looks miserable. So it seems to me the lesson is to do what makes the most sense for your own body, and for me, that’s sumo.


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