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Article: Should I Do Deadlift or Squats First?

Should I Do Deadlift or Squats First? - Gunsmith Fitness

Should I Do Deadlift or Squats First?

The question of whether to perform deadlifts or squats first in your workout routine is a common one among fitness enthusiasts. The answer, however, is not as straightforward as it may seem. It depends on various factors such as your fitness goals, current fitness level, and personal preference. This article aims to provide a comprehensive guide to help you make an informed decision.

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Understanding Deadlifts and Squats

Before we delve into which exercise you should do first, it's important to understand what each exercise entails and the muscles they target.

Deadlifts are a compound exercise that targets multiple muscle groups, including the back, glutes, hamstrings, and core. They are considered a pull exercise because you are pulling the weight off the ground. Deadlifts are great for building strength and power, and they also help improve your posture.

Squats, on the other hand, are also a compound exercise, but they primarily target the lower body, specifically the quads, glutes, and hamstrings. Squats are considered a push exercise because you are pushing the weight up from a squatting position. They are excellent for building lower body strength and improving balance and mobility.

Factors to Consider

Now that we have a basic understanding of what each exercise entails, let's look at the factors you should consider when deciding which exercise to do first.

Your Fitness Goals

Your fitness goals play a crucial role in determining whether you should do deadlifts or squats first. If your goal is to improve your overall strength, particularly your back and core, then you might want to start with deadlifts. However, if your goal is to build lower body strength or improve your leg muscles, then squats should be your go-to first exercise.

It's also worth noting that if you're training for a specific sport or event, your training program might dictate which exercise you should do first. For example, powerlifters often start with squats because they are a key lift in competitions.

Your Energy Levels

Both deadlifts and squats are intense exercises that require a lot of energy. Therefore, it's advisable to do the exercise that is most important to your fitness goals first when you have the most energy. If you do the less important exercise first, you might not have enough energy left to perform the other exercise effectively.

Remember, the order of exercises in your workout routine can significantly impact your performance and results. So, always listen to your body and adjust your workout routine accordingly.

Benefits of Doing Deadlifts First

There are several benefits to doing deadlifts first in your workout routine. Let's explore some of them.

Improved Strength and Power

Deadlifts are a great exercise for building overall strength and power. By doing them first, you can dedicate your energy and focus to lifting as heavy as possible, which can lead to greater strength gains.

Moreover, deadlifts are a functional exercise that can help improve your performance in other exercises and daily activities. For example, they can help you lift heavy objects off the ground safely and efficiently.

Better Posture

Deadlifts are also beneficial for improving your posture. They strengthen the muscles that support your spine, which can help you maintain a healthy posture. By doing deadlifts first, you can prioritize your postural health and reduce the risk of back pain and injuries.

Benefits of Doing Squats First

On the flip side, there are also several benefits to doing squats first in your workout routine. Here are a few.

Enhanced Lower Body Strength

Squats are one of the best exercises for building lower body strength. By doing them first, you can focus on improving your leg muscles, including your quads, glutes, and hamstrings.

Furthermore, squats can help improve your balance and mobility, which can benefit your performance in other exercises and daily activities.

Increased Calorie Burn

Squats are a high-intensity exercise that can help you burn more calories. By doing them first, you can kickstart your metabolism and increase your calorie burn, which can aid in weight loss and muscle building.


In conclusion, whether you should do deadlifts or squats first depends on your fitness goals, energy levels, and personal preference. Both exercises offer unique benefits, so it's all about finding what works best for you. Remember to always prioritize proper form and safety, regardless of the order of exercises. Happy lifting!

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