Halting Deadlifts: Are You Over The Bar?

Halting deadlifts and similar variations are some of my favorite pulling exercises, but they’re also commonly done in a way that makes them essentially pointless.
The key point of these is to keep your shoulders in front of the bar in the top position.
How do you know if they are? Very easily—if you’re not fighting to keep the bar against your legs, your shoulders are not in front of it.
The bar wants to hang below the shoulder joint—so if your shoulders are in front of the bar, that bar is trying to swing forward away from your legs.
If the bar is resting agreeably against your thighs at the top, your shoulders are above or behind it, and you’re completely blowing it.
The second key is maintaining even balance over the whole foot—don’t let yourself get more comfortable by shifting back to the heels. If you’re looking for comfort, you chose a terrible activity.
A quick but important note for clarity: The position at the top of a high halting deadlift or pull to hip is NOT one you should ever be in during an actual snatch or clean—we’re exaggerating to build the strength to stay over the bar and keep the bar against the body when we are.
And finally… this is NOT the power position!

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