Monday, June 23, 2008

Inspiration: Ruth Kasirye Deadlifting

(If you're interested in deadlifting, you may also be interested in the Deadlift Resources page)
I can't find much information about this gal who seems to be listed as Norway's best female weightlifter, but her style, doing these smooth deadlift repeats is inspiring.

This is an example of an Olympic style deadlift, as called by Mark Reifkind, champion powerlifter and senior kettlebell instructor of Rif's Blog fame.

Over on DragonDoor's forum, Mark Reifkind describes the differences this way (we were talking about when it might be more appropriate to use oly shoes rather than flats for a DL)

OL shoes are great for the deadlift IF you deadlift like an Olympic lifter, i.e shins forward, flat lumbar spine shoulder blades pulled back.A clean grip deadlift which the ol guys use as an assitance move for their cleans and snatch pulling.With the heel you will use more quad and upper back off the floor. rather than the traditional posterior chain of the powerlifter.
however, using them with tradition powerlifting style,i.e shins vertical, hips higher, throacic spine more flexed, scapula more protracted and most important, the load on the posterior chain OFF the floor, would though you forwards and probably mess you up.
Of course EVERY body is different and the best way to tell if it's going to work for you is to try it.I have a very "jon Kuc" style deadlift and they actually helped me off the floor for awhile. harder for me to lockout though. in the end I went back to the wrestling shoes.
hope this helps


Likewise, Rif says of this vid:
"awesome effort...a great example of a flat back clean grip deadlift."

Yup. i'm inspired. But what does "to be inspired" mean?

I remember being at a great intimate concert once featuring a pretty amazing Canadian songwriter, and someone saying to her afterwards "listening to you makes me feel like i could go home and write the best song in the world"

At the time (younger, naive-er, aspiring songwriter [side a] [side b]) i snorted when she told me this, thinking you can't just whip off a song: it takes talent AND practice. Lots and lots and lots of practice: you can't just do it. But she said no, that was great. I think i understand that now.

When i look at Kasirye deadlifting like this, so smooth so easy, in a weight class much down from mine, i think "i can DO this" - any maybe someone would snort, seeing where i'm at right now. The difference is, perhaps, i know how much work this takes, and that may not be where i get to. But seeing this, i know it's possible for a smaller gal than i to do something like this. With apparent ease and grace. To see what is possible is to know it can be done, and that i may well have more potential to be tapped, to get closer to where Kasirye is.

To see what had seemed impossible - where no model had been before - as possible. That's inspiring.

And one more inspiration: last year i saw RKC Angela Craig win the TSC, pulling 264lbs in the DL. That was inspiring, too, for other reasons beyond just the numbers.

I guess the point is, there are great models to make us perceive the impossible as possible. In this case, it's also the grace with which the move is made that inspires, too.


Mark Reifkind said...


great blog and thanks for the kind words and the links. I look forward to reading your always interesting thoughts.
as far as the dl goes, or any lift for that matter, start where you are and build slowly and steadily. the only way you won't get where you want to go is if you quit,lol.


dr. m.c. said...

super advice, Rif. thank you.


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