Lifting straps can strategically improve your deadlift training in a variety of ways. Traditional lifting straps wrap once around your wrist, then loop around themselves, wrapping many times around the barbell. This process takes a little while to set up and can cause a wrinkle in your routine, whether you’re a gym veteran or just a beginner to weightlifting. That’s where Figure 8 straps can help you with a simpler, speedier setup process!
Figure 8 lifting straps won’t suddenly help you lift 50 pounds more than you normally can, but there are certainly some distinct advantages to using them.
As shown below, Figure 8 straps loops once around the wrist, then under the bar, then a second loop goes over the hand.
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Here, the barbell gets secured at the crossing point at the bottom of the strap. This is much faster than using regular lifting straps.
Why choose Figure 8 straps over other weightlifting straps?
Figure 8 straps are the ideal choice for deadlifting, as they keep you feeling more locked in with the bar. In fact, a pair of correctly positioned Figure 8 straps are so secure that some lifters opt to not even wrap their thumbs around the bar! If you size them correctly, they can be used with barbells, axle bars, and various rowing movements.
Figure 8 straps are also reasonably priced. However, you can’t really put a price on your gym arsenal, right? RIMSports’ Figure 8 straps are made of heavy duty cotton webbing that will outlast even your heaviest deadlift! The first pair you order will surely be the last pair that you’ll ever need.
Figure 8 Workouts To Help You Lift Better
The most effective weightlifting workouts use a combination of compound exercises. To get the gains you want, you should try to include all kinds of weights into your routine, including barbells, dumbbells and, weight machines.
#1. Barbell Squat
When you do squats, you stretch your glutes under pressure, then produce forceful contractions. Barbell squats are also compound exercise, so along with your quads, your thighs and your gluteus maximus will all be fully engaged.
How to do it: Hold a barbell across your back using an overhand grip. Keeping your head up and chest high, push your hips back, bend your knees, and lower your body until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Push back to the starting position.
Why do this: Deadlifts work your entire body and doing this exercise right can help you build a stronger and a more sculpted physique. It's one of the few lifts that can target your lats and your core, not to mention it will greatly improve your posture as well. However, keep in mind that to do this exercise properly, you’ll need to make sure your hands are protected and you have enough grip so that you can focus on the weight and not your hold.
How to do it: Load a barbell and roll it against your shins. Bend at your hips and knees and grab the bar with an overhand grip, with your hands just beyond shoulder width apart. Keeping your lower back naturally arched, pull your torso up and thrust your hips forward as you stand up with the barbell. Lower the bar to the floor and repeat.
#3. Bench Press
Why do It: The bench press is a three-in-one exercise that targets the chest, triceps, shoulders, and core. It’s one of the best exercises you can do for your upper body strength!
How to do it: Lie flat on a bench. Hold a pair of dumbbells in your hands directly above your chest with your palms facing forward. Keep your head up and bottom touching the bench while your feet stay flat on the floor. Next, gently lower the weights to the sides of your chest, gripping your elbows close to your body. Hold for 4-5 seconds, then push the weights back up to their initial position. It’s recommended to do this exercise with a spotter, so bring a friend or anyone else you trust not to drop a weight on your chest.
#4. Barbell Lunge
Why do It: Lunges are a great exercise with numerous benefits, such as better balance, increased hip flexor flexibility, improved glute activation, stronger core stability, and greater spinal strength!
How to do it: Stand in front of a barbell rack. Keep your torso straight, with your shoulders back and bottom up. Lift the weight off the rack. Step forward with one leg, bringing down your hips until both of your knees are at a 90-degree. Your front knee should not pushed too far out, while your bent knee should not be touching the floor. Keep the weight on your feet as you push back to the beginning position.
#5. Rack Pulls
Why do It: Rack pulls help you build lower body strength and a stronger back. Rack pulls also build muscle mass on your lower body, increase your overall strength, and provide great bragging rights!
How To Do It: Set up a power rack with the bar on the pins. The pins should be just below your knees. Position yourself as you would in a deadlift position. Move your head forward while extending your hips and knees, then pull the weight up. Pause at the top of the movement, then return the weight to the starting position.
#6. Barbell Rows
Why do It: Barbell rows help you to build a stronger back and reinforce proper hip flexion - all important things needed to improve your weightlifting performance!
How to do it: Hold a barbell with your palms facing downwards. Slowly bend your knees and bring your torso forward by bending at the waist, making sure to keep your back straight. Exhale out and lift the barbell towards you, keeping your elbows close. At the top of the movement, press your back muscles and hold for a short time. Finally, breathe in and gradually bring the barbell back to its original position.
#7. Dumbbell Shrugs
Why do it: Dumbbell shrugs work your upper trapezius, which is the shoulder muscle that runs from the top of your shoulder joint to the middle of your neck. This helps you build a stronger back and shoulders, which will help you improve your lifting abilities.
How to do it: Hold a dumbbell in each hand and stand with your feet slightly apart. Relax your shoulders and keep your arms stretched by your sides. Next, slowly lift the dumbbells by lifting your shoulders in a “shrugging” motion. Hold for a few seconds at the top of the movement. Then, slowly lower your shoulders back to their original position.
#8. Arnold Press
Why do this: One of the best and most effective bodybuilding workouts for powering up your shoulders is the Arnold Press - named after the legend himself!
How to do it: Grab a dumbbell in each hand and hold them in front of your chest. Make sure the dumbbells are level with your chest and your palms are facing inwards, with your elbows bent. Next, sit on a bench with your back straight. Lift the dumbbells above your head and rotate your hands so that your palms face forward at the same time. Pause for a few seconds, then slowly begin to lower the dumbbells back down to their starting position.