View Full Version : Reverse Band Deadlift Routine?

01-16-2011, 01:24 PM
I've done okay with several of the popular deadlift routines but have been nickel and diming my way up to my goal of 505. As you can see below, I'm not exactly in my prime and am still 40lbs from my goal. So, I'm looking for something that will give me a lot of bang for my buck and thinking a routine based on reverse band deadlifts could be it.

Some of the old school guys pull singles off boards/blocks with their target weight, starting about a foot off the floor, then dropping the height an inch or two every couple of weeks until they're pulling off the floor just before a meet. Have any of you tried the same concept, using reverse bands? That is, work down from blue to green to purple to minis to the floor with your PR weight? If so, how many weeks did you stay with each band, what was your rep scheme, and how did you deload (e.g., one week against bands or off the floor with XX% 1RM for every three with reverse bands)?

Brian Hopper
01-17-2011, 04:07 PM
I have never seen someone do a reverse band program. But I guess you can just try it and see how it works. Personally, I wouldn't want to do reverse band deadlifts everyweek. I would have to throw in different movements. What do you need work on? Do you need help from the floor or lockout?

01-18-2011, 06:48 AM
Are you training yout abs 3-4 times per week with 12 sets per workout? Thats usually what it takes to get your deadlift moving.

01-18-2011, 03:12 PM
Brian - It's not so much the start or lockout, but weak hips. I spent last fall and the past few weeks correcting that, first with things like weighted hip raises, RDLs, GMs, and glute activation movements, then taking a brief foray into the wonderful world of the Smolov squat routine. Figured the latter would either kill me or give me hip strength to match my back (along with improving my squat). I set a PR in December, which would indicate the hip stuff helped, and I'll be pulling off the floor tomorrow to see if that brutal Smolov crap was worth the pain.

Scott - I've got very strong abs...but although I always train them at least three times a week, I've never even considered that many sets. I usually do three sets of either rope tucks, weighted situps, weighted incline crunches supersetted with leg raises, or ab wheel.

01-18-2011, 05:36 PM
I've pulled reverse band DL as part of a ME rotation but never thought about an entire cycle. You may want to check out Westside Barbell's site and look at the articles section. I'm pretty sure Louie Simmons lays out a reverse band squat cycle in one of his articles. I don't remember the details but I would think you could do something similar for DL.

01-18-2011, 06:32 PM
It would work for a cycle so long as everything else is in order IMO.

01-19-2011, 05:39 AM
halfsquat - Louie talked about reverse band squats in some of his PL USA articles but never an entire squat routine based on them. The closest thing I've seen so far is a deadlift routine laid out by Sgt. Rock in 2008. He alternated reverse bands with against bands and lifting off blocks, then pulling off the floor every fourth week. In fact, that's the routine I had planned to do until I started wondering about what might happen if I just used the lightened technique.

Nick - Yea, one cycle would be about right. I'm a firm believer in "Almost everything works, but nothing works forever". Last year, I did 5-3-1, HCT, and even a silly hybrid I put together that included KB swings & snatches to improve my speed. I think the beauty of staying with reverse bands would be the confidence factor. If you took your time and made sure you made your target weight before you dropped down to the next level, you shouldn't be intimidated by the bar weight by the time you got to the final test.

Brian Hopper
01-19-2011, 11:13 AM
deadlift routine laid out by Sgt. Rock in 2008. He alternated reverse bands with against bands and lifting off blocks, then pulling off the floor every fourth week.

I was actually thinking about trying this program out sometime this year.

"Almost everything works, but nothing works forever".

I think that's why you should try it and see how it works out for you.

01-19-2011, 11:29 AM
I don't think an organized write up of a Rev. Band DL cycle is out there. Look up the Big Iron Squat routine (think it's from an older PLUSA) to give you an idea of maybe how to structure it, although that is a squat routine specifically. I'd be wary of just using Rev. Bands if your lifting raw and you don't have a horrible lockout. As far as your hips, I'd maybe focus on bringing up your GPP with sled drags in a variety of ways for your hips and maybe work RDLs harder. I do like Rev. Band DLs, but I typically use them more for an indicator exercise and not for volume work. (but then again I'm terrible at pulling). Maybe you could do your typically raw work, and throw on Rev. Bands for a set or two with a higher weight.

I definitely agree with Scott, abs abs abs (heavy side bends/suitcase DLs too)! Monster obliques always help me stay more upright in pulling

01-19-2011, 11:49 AM
Ive done 3 week rotations of deadlifts going from +2 pr chain to +1 pr chain to straight weight and thought it seemed to help. If I were to do the same thing with reverse bands I would just go from a lot of assistance to some to none.

01-19-2011, 05:46 PM
Brian - That's an eighteen week routine. I have a meet in Feb, another in April, and a third in June. So, I can't do it as written. Then again, Brent does have you lifting off the floor every five weeks. So, I guess I could plug in my goal for July and do the interim percentages at the earlier meets.

Blood & Thunder - Well, that's two for abs. Started doing more sets today but doubt I'll work up to 12 sets per session.

Butcher - Glad your experiment with chains worked. Looks like mine is going well, too. After the two sessions with heavy and medium bands, I pulled my best 3x3 ever off the floor today. Next time, I'll work with light (purple) bands, then shoot for a PR double the following week. That will put me two weeks out from my next meet. Perfect timing, so I hope the trend continues.

Brian Hopper
01-19-2011, 07:03 PM
What meets are your doing?

01-20-2011, 10:00 AM
Brian - The plan is:

February 19: APF (Orlando)
April 10: USPA (Port St. Lucie)
July 2: USPA (Port St. Lucie)

Not certain about the second one. If the geezers I coach or the team at Space Coast Barbell supports it, I'll stay the course. If not, I'll opt out in favor of a nice long cycle to prepare for my big pull attempt in July.

How about you?