Single Leg Suit Case Dead Lift

13 Feb Single Leg Suit Case Dead Lift

Comprehensive strength and conditioning programs for the professional athlete to weekend warrior or even fitness enthusiast utilizes a training template with sections addressing flexibility, mobility, joint range of motion, core stabilization, strength, power, and energy system development. Breaking this template down to a greater degree and focusing on the strength development section of a program recognize the importance of training movements and not muscles.

I believe strength coach Mike Boyle may have been the first to coin this phrase, regardless, know the body operate via integrate movement patterns to create locomotion, change direction, and exert force onto external objects. In order to create greater efficiency within these patterns, avoid injury, and increase performance it is necessary to increase the force outputs of the kinetic chain. This is achieved by placing stimuli upon the kinetic chain above and beyond its normal capacities. The fundamental process by which this is achieved is via resistance training (i.e. external load) though recognize many additional processes exist to overload the kinetic chain.

Looking at resistance training, the lower body, movements, and integration, the concept of isolated lower body exercises does not necessarily appear to be conducive for the athletic population. Isolated exercise patterns can be utilized in certain situations with athletes though overall integrated patterns will be the primary driver of lower body exercises. Knowing this directive moves our exercise selection to modalities which incorporate the entire kinetic chain within the movement pattern.

Squat and Dead Lift patterns incorporating the entire lower body and are the ideal drivers of lower body exercises. Recognize with both the squat and dead lift bilateral and unilateral patterns exist for both movements. The athletic population which typically executes the majority of their movement patterns in unilateral positions are going to benefit from the incorporation of unilateral lower body patterns. Bilateral movement patterns definitely have their place in the strength and conditioning program of the athlete though not implementing unilateral patterns would be a mistake.

The Single Leg Suit Case Dead Lift is one such exercise to implement into programming for unilateral strength improvement. An exercise where the hip is the “driver” of the exercise and classified as a lower body pull exercise will be a benefit in the overall programming of your athletic population.

Why Its’ Important: The athletic population performs the majority of their movement patterns in unilateral positions. Rarely are athletes in a bilateral position during athletic activities. As a result it is necessary to develop the kinetic chain with unilateral positions and patterns.

Improves Your: Lower body pull strength

Target Area: Posterior chain of lower body

The Common Problem: A lack of posterior chain lower body unilateral strength

The Solution: The inclusion of unilateral lower body exercises addressing the posterior chain and hips in pull patterns

Single Leg Suit Case Dead Lift

Set Up:

  • Grasp dumbbell in left hand
  • Position feet shoulder width apart
  • Upright torso position with left arm extended
  • Elevate right foot off the floor and balance on left leg



  • Brace the core and begin reach downward to floor with dumbbell
  • Bend at the hips and extend the right leg backwards while keeping left leg straight
  • Continue to reach with dumbbell, pivoting at the hip, and extending right leg backwards
  • Pause at bottom position of exercise where dumbbell is at shin level
  • Pull to return to starting position of the exercise and repeat movement pattern


About Performance Coach Sean Cochran: Sean Cochran, one of the most recognized performance coaches in sports today. A career spanning positions with 2 major league baseball organizations, over 10 years on the PGA Tour and work with top professionals including three-time Masters, PGA, and British Open Champion Phil Mickelson, future hall of fame Trevor Hoffman, and Cy Young award winner Jake Peavy provides Sean a proven track record of success.  He has been involved in the production of numerous performance videos and authored books including; Performance Golf Fitness, Complete Conditioning for Martial Arts, and Fit to Hit. He has been a presenter of educational seminars for numerous organizations including the world renown Titleist Performance Institute.