Category Archives: Ask Bret Contreras (ABC)

Deadlift Lockout Strength

Hi Bret, I’m a big fan or your blog and I appreciate your science-based approach. Recently, a popular Norwegian powerlifting coach stated the following:

“Missing a lockout is never about weak hip-extensors. If the person is strong enough to initiate a hip extension in the first place he should have no problem finishing it.┬áIf you stop close to full extension it is not about weak extension but weak grip or thoracic flexion”

I would love to know your take on this statement Bret. Thank you! – Andreas

Hi Andreas! Thanks for the compliment. Before I answer your question, I’d like to stress that I’m a huge fan of Norway’s strength & conditioning practices and their commitment to sports science. In fact, I’m probably more impressed with Norway’s efforts to understand the practical aspects of sports science than I am with any other country right now. I have no doubt that this coach in question works with some incredible athletes, and my response should not be misinterpreted as a sign of disrespect but as a way of pushing strength science forward.

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What’s the Best Single Leg Exercise?

“Hi Bret! I’ve got a question for you. You seem to write about single leg training quite often. What’s the very best single leg exercise out there? Thank you, Adam

Hi Adam,

First of all, the answer to this question depends on your goal and fitness levels. I’m sure you’re aware that there are many excellent single leg exercises and variations. But the various patterns are likely synergistic with one another in that you’ll get better bang for your buck by employing a few different single leg exercises rather than just one. Therefore, I wouldn’t try to narrow it down to just one. And don’t worry, with experimentation, nearly all lifters can find several unilateral exercises that suit their bodies very well.

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Loving Your Body

Hi Bret! I’m a big fan of your blog and I’ve been working very hard on my glutes over the past several months. I’ve lost twenty pounds, and for the first time, my glutes are beginning to pop out and show some shape. I’m currently hip thrusting 80 kgs for 12 reps, and my squat and deadlift have both increased since discovering your blog and implementing your advice. Despite my gradual progress, last week, I hit a wall so to speak. I was looking in the mirror and I got so frustrated with my body that I just lost it. I started crying hysterically for hours it seemed. Sorry to bombard you with my personal issues, but I see the pictures that you post on your blog and I want my body to look like theirs. My body is changing, but not at the pace I’d like it to. What can I do to change my attitude? Thanks, Toby

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How do I Keep my Glutes While on Vacation? A Simple Bodyweight Glute Workout


“Hi Bret, I love your blog. I’m going to be going on a week long vacation in September and I don’t want to lose my glutes during that time. I won’t have access to a gym or any equipment. What can I do to prevent loss of glute size? Thank you in advance. My glutes have never looked better since implementing your training by the way, I put an inch on my glutes since last month and lost an inch around my waist! Linda

Hi Linda! Nice work, keep it up!

You won’t lose your glutes in one week, it doesn’t work that way. Sometimes people take a week off and come back stronger, depending on their training and physiology. So don’t feel compelled to exercise every day while on vacation.

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