Hand Placement

Personally I like to teach beginners to place their hands just outside shoulder width, but some people with bad shoulder mobility have to have a wide hand placement. The closer hand placement naturally helps create a shelf on your traps for the bar to rest.


  • Try to keep your elbows under the bar to keep tight and allow the lats to stay engaged


Bar Placement (on back)

High bar – Below the neck/ high on the trap

Low bar – about an inch below high bar placement/ generally for lifting maximal weight and powerlifting

Find that sweet spot where the bar can rest on your trap and not aggravate the neck. If you have a hard time finding your spot, build a bigger back/trap and/or learn how to flex the back aka see me to learn the tight arch position.



See Deadlift critique for more information.


Walk Out

I like to be efficient and un-rack the bar from a closed/narrow stance so I do a mini squat lift to get the bar off the rack.

3 step – one step back, one step with each foot in each direction horizontally as squat width preference.

4 step – 2 steps back one at a time, then one step with each foot in each direction horizontally as squat width preference.

Squat Stance Width

Everyone is different, meaning everyone’s width of their feet and how externally rotated your feet are (the outward rotation of your feet aka duck feet).

See video below for information on how I learned how to find my squat width or see me to hear my personal experience finding my squat width.


If you already know that you have problems with depth and are not wearing Olympic lifting shoes (shoes with a solid raised fixed heel), you either need to get some shoes or be okay with not hitting depth yet until you work on your mobility in your calves and achilles.

  • Keep knees from turning inward, so push them out to continue to engage the glutes
  • Track knees – should be pointed between 2nd and 3rd toes
  • Keep tight – back and all
  • Look at a fixed point while keeping a neutral neck position