Monday, 14 May 2012

Exercise Technique Series - The Sandbag Deadlift

The Sandbag Deadlift is a key strength movement like the Sandbag Back Squat and the Sandbag Overhead Press. It should be your strongest exercise in terms of the amount of weight you can lift.


  • Start with your feet right next to or under the bag 
  • Take your grip - this could either be via the handles or the material of the bag 
  • Set your back in the correct position - neutral spine 
  • The knees should be slightly bent 
  • Keep the sandbag close to your legs throughout the lift 
  • Your shoulders should be over the sandbag 
  • The arms stay straight - just like hooks 
  • Maintaining the natural curve in your back, stand upright 
  • Be sure to open out your hips fully in between lifts 


  • See ‘Sandbag Suitcase Deadlift’

All images and text taken from The Complete Guide To Sandbag Training (available on Kindle and All Other Formats)


  1. Catherine Gaughan4 March 2013 at 18:41

    Ohh that's nasty!! 9 sets 20 kg bag

  2. Matthew Palfrey4 March 2013 at 19:11

    Nice work Cathi!

  3. I got your book and am just about to start with the workouts. My sandbag goes up to 80 lbs.

    In the workout I'm supposed to do 5x5 of deadlift but even fully loaded that is very light for sets of 5 reps. Is there an alternative movement or do you just have really heavy bags dedicated for moves like deadlift?

  4. Matthew Palfrey28 March 2013 at 07:33

    Hi Ray - it is a good idea to have a heavier bag (or a bag that you can make heavier). But in the meantime you can try making the reps higher, switching to a suitcase deadlift or a single hand deadlift, or gripping the bag instead of the handles for a tougher grip workout. Hope that helps!

  5. Matthew Palfrey28 March 2013 at 15:43

    No problem! Happy to help

  6. Try throwing a few kettlebells in the bag to make it heavier

  7. Or anything else that's reasonably heavy - I know people that have used iron shot in their sandbags

  8. Worth Reading!

    Just wanted to share my friends experience here. He is

    using this amazing product Focus T25 Challenge Pack and he is

    very satisfied with the results! Helps him a lot during

    exhaustive workout schedule.

  9. Hello, is there a link for your daily workouts?

  10. Hi Danielito, the workouts are all posted on and whenever new ones are available. There are also a few hundred different ones to try from previous posts.