RDLs have always been a favorite movement of mine. In high school (late 90’s), we’d ALWAYS squat then do RDLs.
If I knew squats were the next day, then I didn’t even need to look at the rest of the programming, I just assumed we’d likely be doing RDLs (and then lunges…) after our squats. That was just part of the the routine, and I got great results from these “leg days”.
Once I got comfortable with regular (bilateral) barbell RDLs, I eventually started playing with single leg variations like the variation in this video where I’m using a landmine.
This variation is convenient because you don’t need to focus on your balance as much as if you were hold a dumbbell or kettlebell. The one end anchored to the floor adds enough stability so you can go all the way to failure without falling over. This leads to greater stimulus and likely to more compensation (muscle growth / strength gain).
Point of performance
- Maintain back position / “neutral spine” etc
- Pivot only at the hip joint of the working leg
- Non-working leg stays in full hip extension throughout
- Maintain a “soft knee” with a slight bend / maintain consistent knee angle the entire time
This movement primarily works your glutes and hamstrings with a some light attention givens to the spinal erectors and grip.
If you have a back injury and don’t want to do heavy squats and deadlifts, this movement can be helpful to working your hinge pattern without loading your injured back with hundreds of pounds.
3-5 sets of 8-15 reps twice per week at the end of your workouts is a great place to start.
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