Burpee Deadlift—Why would you do it?

The burpee deadlift with two kettlebells is one of my favorite exercises and one that I prescribe to people I want to have doing deadlifts for the quads. I might also want them to break up the exercise, i.e. rather than doing one deadlift after another and the weight barely being dead, with the burpee I know it has to go dead.

The other effect I want from this exercise is the work done on the chest, lats, and scapulae area. When you jump into the burpee you should really create a solid base for the shoulders, not only to protect shoulders but also to work that area, you’re in static contraction for a second or so. It also adds the lats, which is great, because those are not worked enough.

I like using kettlebells for this as it allows a seamless transition from burpee into deadlift.

  1. Place two kettlebells in front
  2. Squat
  3. Keep the shoulders above the handles
  4. Squat deep
  5. Hips low and shoulders high
  6. Look ahead
  7. Grab the handles with a solid grip
  8. Lock out the triceps
  9. Brace the chest and abs
  10. Pull the armpits together
  11. Pull the lats down
  12. Kick the feet back
  13. Land on the ball of the feet
  14. Into one straight line from ankles, knees, hips, to shoulders
  15. Press into the bells
  16. Pull the hips slightly up
  17. Pull the feet in
  18. Land flat on the feet next to the bells
  19. Bring the hips low
  20. Look ahead
  21. Lift the shoulders first
  22. Shrug the shoulders
  23. Come into full extension
  24. Repeat


So, why would you do them? To reset and truly get those hips under before your lift. Usually, it ends up being fast reps with no thought, just rapid movement, and the lower back suffers.  To break down the movement, provide a pause in the deadlift, rather than bang bang bang with the weights just barely touching, or worse, bouncing up and down. It’s all about reps reps reps, great, but get your reps 100% right for them to count. It shouldn’t always be about winning, come in some days and think about actually training your body. You get a lot more benefit from doing an exercise right and reap the intended benefits from it.


If you’re short on kettlebells in your box, use partner work, or even groups of three, with partners one is doing 40 jumping jacks while the other does the exercise 10 times, and swap. If you have three people, one can be in the plank until transition, one is doing the jumping jacks, and the other is doing the deadlifts.

Complete 10 rounds, there is your 20-minute workout.

Check out the chipper Undaunted Warrior Workout, I programmed 50 of these babies in it. Post on our FB, YT, or Instagram if you’re using these and like them.

PS. If you’re thinking “but a burpee is with a push-up and jump!”, no it isn’t, if you were doing exercise before CrossFit, then the burpee is: From standing into plank position and back up.

The exercise was invented by Mr. Burpee, I shit you not. What you’re doing is the CrossFit burpee.

PPS. There are more muscles involved, I just wanted to keep it simple, but if you’re interested: gluteus maximus, hamstrings, calves, erector spinae, and more.

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