STIFF LEG DEADLIFT - WINNING WEIGHTLIFTING EXERCISE Learn the stiff leg deadlift from U.S. Olympic & Team USA coach, Harvey Newton. The stiff leg deadlift is a specialty exercise for more experienced weightlifters. Stand up with the barbell as in a conventional deadlift. Unlock the knees slightly and maintain this position throughout the repetitions. Inhale; lean forward (hip hinge), allowing the shoulders to move over the toes and slowly lower the barbell to a position below the knees. The final position depends on the lifter's flexibility. Lower as far as possible provided the neutral spine posture is not lost. The exercise strengthens the spinal erectors in an isometric fashion while actively engaging the hamstring muscle group of the legs.