Restore: the hips program

advanced progressions for stability and strength

single leg deadlift

Make no mistake, the Single Leg Deadlift is a challenging exercise to do well. It’s also arguably one of THE most important for a runner to master and progress if the goal is to possess a massively stable AND strong hip girdle!

Your “Prerequisites”


If you have mastered hip-hinging and the basic mechanics of the two-leg deadlift (which are certainly prerequisites for this exercise), then you’ll learn this one quickly.

Your KEYS to success are…

  • To maintain a “high” hip throughout. The way you know you’re doing this – your “cue” – is to feel your hamstring engaged throughout. It can be subtle. It’s as much a feeling as it is an actual change in position. So, if you lose that feeling of your hamstring talking to you, it’s likely your hips have dropped. And as a result, you’ve lost one of the focus points of the exercise.
  • To keep a neutral spine throughout. Losing this means you’ve lost your core/trunk and hip integration.
  • To be sure and watch the instructional video carefully and learn by practicing, videoing to critique your form, then practicing again, first without any load.

You will want to learn and progress this exercise in progressive “stages.” That’s the most effective way to learn.

STAGE 1: Master the movement without load, and while using a handrail or support for balance. This allows you to pattern the movement well without struggling.

STAGE 2: Once you feel comfortable with it and are moving correctly, you begin to load it – first with 10-20lbs – and then up to 35 to 45 lbs if you’re a male – 25 to 35 lbs if you’re a female.

STAGE 3: Train the movement without any support, relying on your own balance and hip stability to be able to power through, using as much load as you can handle, with control.

As you improve your skill and start to progress this exercise, you are welcome to begin doing it without support.

Keep in mind though – if balance is challenged, you’re much better off using a support – you need to be solid and still and have a firm base in order to build hip stability and strength!

To print a PDF of this written information on the page, CLICK HERE!