Smith One Leg Deadlift

Smith One Leg Deadlift

The Smith One Leg Deadlift is an effective and challenging exercise that targets your glutes, hamstrings, lower back, and core muscles. This exercise is a variation of the traditional deadlift, but it focuses on unilateral leg strength and stability. The Smith machine provides a stable and controlled environment, making it perfect for beginners or those who want to work on their balance. To perform the Smith One Leg Deadlift, you will need a Smith machine and a barbell. Start by standing in front of the barbell with your feet hip-width apart. Place one foot a few inches in front of the other and grab the barbell with an overhand grip, slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Engage your core and maintain a slight bend in your standing leg while keeping your back straight. Slowly hinge forward at the hips, extending your free leg straight behind you for balance. Lower the barbell towards the ground while keeping it close to your body and maintaining a neutral spine. Once you reach a comfortable depth, exhale and slowly return to the starting position by contracting your glutes and hamstrings. Repeat the movement for the desired number of repetitions before switching legs. Incorporating the Smith One Leg Deadlift into your routine can help improve your balance, strengthen your posterior chain, and enhance overall stability. Remember to start with lighter weights and gradually increase the resistance as you become more confident with the exercise.


  • Start by placing a loaded barbell on the safety stops of a squat rack at a height that is slightly below knee level.
  • Stand in front of the barbell, facing away from the rack.
  • Position yourself so that the barbell is aligned with your front foot, with your heel approximately 2 to 3 inches away from the bar.
  • Place your back foot behind you, resting the top of your foot on an elevated surface such as a weight plate or bench.
  • Bend your front knee slightly and hinge forward at the hips, keeping your back straight and chest up.
  • Reach down and grip the barbell with an overhand grip, slightly wider than shoulder-width apart.
  • Make sure your grip is secure and your wrists are in a neutral position.
  • Take a deep breath, brace your core, and lift the barbell by extending your hips and driving through your front heel.
  • Continue to lift the barbell until you are standing fully upright, with your chest lifted and shoulders back.
  • Pause briefly at the top position, squeezing your glutes and maintaining a stable core.
  • Slowly lower the barbell back down to the starting position, maintaining control and keeping your back straight.
  • Repeat the movement for the desired number of repetitions before switching sides.

Tips & Tricks

  • Maintain proper form throughout the exercise.
  • Incorporate balance and stability training to improve core strength.
  • Focus on engaging the glutes and hamstrings while performing the movement.
  • Start with lighter weights and gradually increase the resistance to avoid injury.
  • Perform the exercise at a slow and controlled pace to maximize muscle activation.
  • Do not lock your knees during the movement, keep a slight bend in them.
  • Ensure your back is straight and your shoulders are pulled back throughout the exercise.
  • Remember to breathe properly, inhaling during the lowering phase and exhaling during the lifting phase.
  • Always warm up before performing this exercise to prevent muscle strain.
  • To continue challenging your muscles, vary your foot placement and use different equipment such as dumbbells or resistance bands.


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