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A biomechanical analysis of straight and hexagonal barbell deadlifts using submaximal loads.

Swinton, Paul A.; Stewart, Arthur; Agouris, Ioannis; Keogh, Justin W.L.; Lloyd, Ray


Arthur Stewart

Justin W.L. Keogh

Ray Lloyd


The purpose of the investigation was to compare the kinematics and kinetics of the deadlift performed with 2 distinct barbells across a range of submaximal loads. Nineteen male powerlifters performed the deadlift with a conventional straight barbell and a hexagonal barbell that allowed the lifter to stand within its frame. Subjects performed trials at maximum speed with loads of 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, and 80% of their predetermined 1- repetition maximum (1RM). Inverse dynamics and spatial tracking of the external resistance were used to quantify kinematic and kinetic variables. Subjects were able to lift a heavier 1RM load in the hexagonal barbell deadlift (HBD) than the straight barbell deadlift (SBD) (265±41 kg vs. 245±39 kg, p < 0.05). The design of the hexagonal barbell significantly altered the resistance moment at the joints analyzed (p < 0.05), resulting in lower peak moments at the lumbar spine, hip, and ankle (p < 0.05) and an increased peak moment at the knee (p < 0.05). Maximum peak power values of 4,388±713 and 4,872±636 W were obtained for the SBD and HBD, respectively (p < 0.05). Across the submaximal loads, significantly greater peak force, peak velocity and peak power values were produced during the HBD compared to during the SBD (p ± 0.05). The results demonstrate that the choice of barbell used to perform the deadlift has a significant effect on a range of kinematic and kinetic variables. The enhanced mechanical stimulus obtained with the hexagonal barbell suggests that in general the HBD is a more effective exercise than the SBD.


SWINTON, P.A., STEWART, A., AGOURIS, I., KEOGH, J.W.L. and LLOYD, R. 2011. A biomechanical analysis of straight and hexagonal barbell deadlifts using submaximal loads. Journal of strength and conditioning research [online], 25(7), pages 2000-2009. Available from:

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jul 31, 2011
Online Publication Date Jul 31, 2011
Publication Date Jul 31, 2011
Deposit Date Nov 28, 2013
Publicly Available Date Nov 28, 2013
Journal Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research
Print ISSN 1064-8011
Electronic ISSN 1533-4287
Publisher Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 25
Issue 7
Pages 2000-2009
Keywords Resistance trainingPowerVelocityForceKineticsKinematics
Public URL


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