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The RDL baby! The key to seeing results is consistently getting better through quality training. I have learned first hand that by learning to do key exercises the right way. This is the answer for getting strong. Add in small variations to hit each and every angle and you’ll have a one two punch in this game we call effectiveness.
Perfect RDL Exercises for Better Glutes
This post is a little different than some of the workouts I have shared recently. I am walking you through one exercise and how to nail your form. Small variations are all that is needed to hit more angles of your body and get better results. The benefit here? Well, when you do something over and over you get good. When you are good your workout works.
Muscle Confusion is a Myth
The first year I dated Scott he lived down the street from me in New Jersey. Gym dates and workouts were easy. I just followed what he said and let him take the reins since I was such a newbie. It was like being a Kardashian with a regular trainer just for me! Flash forward about a year later I become more interested in fitness just as he was moving down to Texas. I was still in New Jersey, and a bit more on my own at the gym. Every article I read or workout I found in a magazine emphasized muscle confusion. Every exercise had to be different. Results only came through confusion! Looking back this was total bogus. I started trying so many things that I was seeing zero results. In fact, every gym session became overwhelming because it was SO different. Learning a new exercise ain’t no easy thing.
An RDL is also known in the gym world as a Romanian deadlift, stiff leg deadlift or a hip hinge. Dumbbells are a perfect way to progress and get ready to use a barbell. They are excellent for the glutes and hamstrings and I perform them regularly in my workouts. There are small ways you can switch it up to hit every angle you are trying to develop. But the movement at its core always remains the same. You won’t need to force an increase in weight. But an increase in weight will become necessary to continually see results.
Stand with your feet parallel to each other and positioned under your hips. Stack your spine by tucking the tailbone under, folding the ribs down and raising the collar bone up.
- Break slightly at the knees to unlock the legs. The base of the big toe is grounded and glutes lightly squeezed. The thighs open enough to keep each knee lined up between the hip and ankle.
- With the tailbone tucked under and pelvis neutral, push the glutes backward as thetorso hinges forward. You should feel the hamstrings take on tension. Keep the knee bent as is and do NOT deepen it as you hinge.
- Do not distort the spine. Move from the hip socket only. The hip socket is found underneath your back pockets where the thigh joins the pelvis – this is below the base of the spine.
- Do NOT allow the back to round like a turtle shell or arched up like a cat. Lower as faras the spine can hold a flat posture. Find your full range of motion as it is right now.
- Keep the weights close to your body. The weight should move in a straight vertical linedownward as the body moves out of its way. Maintain a controlled tempo.
- On the ascent, drive the feet down and back into the ground as you pull the weight upand back to bring the hips through to full extension. Squeeze the glutes as the torso raises up and the hips come through.
- One Dumbbell vs. Two Dumbbells
- Staggered Feet
- Single Leg RDL
Exercise Video Demo
Pay close attention to the video so that you really start to understand the details. Return to it multiple times because you will get more out of it each and every time you see it. You will also take different things from it that you didn’t take from it before. The lessons in this video apply to all the variations. No matter how you create variation in the way the weight is held does not change the muscles involves or the fundamental principals of the movement.
Add this exercise to your workouts regularly and you will be creating the memory of the movement. Keep in mind the more often you do something the better you will become and the more effective it will be. Suddenly an RDL won’t sound like some crazy complicated gym move for other people who are more athletic than you. It will feel just right. By building your moves you are building your body.
This is a good set of dumbbells (affiliate link) if you don’t already have a set at home.
How About You?
- Do you ever include RDL exercises in your workouts?
- Do you ever feel like you try to make your workouts too different?