Here is yet another great training video from Jon @ Again Faster. I encourage everyone to watch it. It will benefit our new On Rampers who just learned the Deadlift and variations of the Deadlift (Medball Deadlift and Sumo Deadlift High Pull), as well as our existing athletes (35 heavy Deadlifts in todays WOD).
It builds core stability. The deadlift directly targets all of the major muscle groups responsible for correct posture and core strength. Correct deadlifting technique enables one to hold their back straight when engaging in daily activities, due to its emphasis on maintaining a straight back throughout its movement.
The deadlift will also strengthen all the surrounding supporting muscles of the waist, backside, hips and, of course, lower back. Core strength is important in terms of maintaining ones balance, and weight transference (whether in sport or daily life).
More Muscles Worked
As mentioned, it works more muscles simultaneously than any other movement (yes, including even the beloved squat). The deadlift truly forces the whole body to grow.
It is relatively risk free and safe to perform. With the deadlift, there is no risk of getting pinned under a maximum lift (as with the squat and bench press), and provided form is correct, will not unduly stress any of the major joints.
Real Life Application
It has a real life application. Lifting objects from the ground, from a variety of angles, is enhanced through regular deadlifting. The real life functionality of the deadlift comes into play when one becomes strong enough to lift a heavy object (furniture for example), while decreasing the likelihood of injuring themselves.
It develops gripping strength. If done without wraps, the deadlift will strengthen the grip like no other movement due to the sheer weight involved (it is not uncommon for one to work up to 300+ pounds for repetitions).
True Measure Of Strength
It could be argued that, in a powerlifting context, the deadlift is a true measure of strength due to its lack of emphasis on various performance aids (suits etc). It also employs more muscle groups, and therefore could be deemed a better test of overall muscle strength.
It has a special appeal. Simply picking a weight off the floor, and engaging all major muscle groups in the process, has a special primordial appeal – sort of like ripping a gigantic tree out of the ground. Standing and holding the massive weight also promotes a feeling of immense power.
Cardio Respiratory Fitness
It helps to develop cardio respiratory fitness. Like the squat, deadlifts will severely tax the cardio respiratory system if done with enough intensity. This obviously has positive ramifications for cardiovascular health. In fact, high intensity deadlifts aerobically tax the body big time.