Sam Sulek Reveals The Weightlifting Exercise To Avoid At All Costs

The 21-year-old YouTube sensation has come down hard on a compound exercise that many adore but could be holding you back…

Bodybuilder Sam Sulek has made quite the name for himself in recent months and years thanks to his god-like physique, rule-breaking approach to social media and Youtube posting, along with a plethora of controversial hot takes that send the fitness community into a heated frenzy with dazzling regularity.

Now, in his most recent vlog that shows Day 72 of his impressive Winter Bulk, the online star has come down pretty hard on a compound exercise that is regarded as an all-time classic by many bodybuilders, powerlifters, and athletes alike. While it may surprise you at first, his logic is undeniably sound…

WATCH: Sulek’s impressive winter bulk continues… sans deadlift.

The video shows Sulek travelling to the iconic if infamous Planet Fitness to take on many lifters’ least favourite day of the week: leg day. Including leg extensions and Smith machine squats, Sulek boasts at the end of the video that he left the gym with his ‘chest held high’ after a solid workout, but this didn’t stop him from making a characteristically controversial point while resting between sets of hamstring curls…

The deadlift — wherein you lift a loaded bar off the ground to an upright standing position, working your legs, glutes, back, and core all in one seamless compound movement — is considered by many to be a staple of any good leg (or back) day and even comprises one of the three main and essential lifts in the doctrine of powerlifting, alongside chest press and squats.

Predictably, however, Sulek feels otherwise. The bodybuilder instead claims that he avoids deadlifts wherever possible because working out so much of the body in one go can actually cause you to be so tired, overworked and ‘blown apart’ that it becomes hard to then maintain a high intensity and level for focus for the remainder of your workout.

“If I was to do a set of deadlifts, as heavy as I could dgo for 10 [reps]… sure, my traps, lower back, erectors, but my whole body would be f*cking blown apart.”Sam Sulek

Sulek instead favours the ‘efficiency’ of exercises like the hamstring curl, which hones in specifically on the muscle you want to train and grow rather than hitting several muscle groups in one fell swoop. This point of view effectively gets down to the essence of the long-time debate over whether compound or isolation exercises are best for fitness, gains, and recovery.

“I don’t wanna say I only do isolation movements… but I do like leaning towards efficient movements like these… I’d rather do pulldowns or rows where the only muscle I’m hitting is the one that I’m targeting. Nothing else is coming into play.”Sam Sulek

Whether you’re like me — a longtime hater of the deadlift — or a committed powerlifter who couldn’t be paid to abandon the king of compound movements, when you see Sulek’s chocolate-milk fuelled results, his point is at least worth considering, if not adopting outright.

If you’re looking for some alternatives to the humble deadlift, be sure to check out our database of exercises and workouts for men, where there’s something sure to suit everyone.

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