What is Most Impressive about the Steph Curry Deadlift?
A Steph Curry deadlift of 400 pounds is not the most spectacular feat of his strength.
At 6 feet 3 inches and 190 pounds, a 400-pound deadlift is not that remarkable today.
Take, for example, powerlifter Dr. Stefanie Cohen.
She deadlifts 545 pounds at a weight of 125 pounds, over four times her body weight.
As you can see in one of her workout videos below:
Powerlifter Dr. Stefi Cohen Deadlifts Four Times Her Body Weight
The real story is how the deadlift helped transform the injury-hobbled Curry into a:
- Two-time MVP,
- NBA Finals MVP (2024),
- Eight-time NBA All-Star, and
- Four-time NBA Champion (2015, 2017, 2018, 2024).
Serial Ankle Injuries Almost Ended His Career
Tom Haberstroh, an ESPN staff writer, reported in 2015, “Curry played just 26 games in 2011-12 because of ankle issues.” ¹
Curry went down with five ankle sprains in 2011-12, his first season in the NBA.
It appeared he could go the way of many other professional athletes sidelined by injuries.
Imagine, one ankle sprain every five games.
In 2012, Pablo S. Torre, ESPN Senior Writer quoted a despondent sounding Curry.
“I feel like I’m never going to be able to play again.” ²
Steph had ankle surgery in April of 2012.
However, that was not enough to protect his ankles from melting down once again.
In Curry’s second year, he returned for 78 games in the 2012/2013 season, but still suffered more ankle sprains.
These injuries resulted in less time on the court in the playoffs against the Nuggets and the Spurs.
In total, Stephen Curry’s sustained 17 ankle injuries.
How did he save his NBA career and become a legendary MVP?
Enter Keke Lyles and the Deadlift
In 2013, Golden State Warriors director of athletic performance Keke Lyles joined the team.
He designed a program to help build Curry’s core strength in his hips and glutes.
As many athletes know, from boxers to runners, there is tremendous power in your hips and lower body.
Lyles theorized that improving Curry’s lower-body strength work will take significant stress off of his ankles.
Therefore he centered Curry’s new training regimen around one particular lift, the deadlift, and single-leg strength exercises.
The Secret That Saved Stephen Curry’s Ankles and NBA Career
Natural Talent is Not Enough
Steph Curry learned that he could not rely on natural talent alone.
As gifted as Curry is, he still needed to work on taking better care of his body.
Of all the exercises that Keke Lyles could have prescribed, he focused on one.
No matter what sport you are in, lower body hip and glute strength will rocket your athletic abilities.
And even if you are not a professional athlete, the deadlift can transform your body into looking and feeling like one.
After Two Years of Deadlifting – Stephen Curry Voted MVP
After two years of deadlifting, what were the results off of the court?
“He’s probably ten times stronger than what people think, Lyles said.
I knew he was strong, but then he started pushing that kind of weight, double his own weight.
Exhibit A: Curry can deadlift 400 pounds.
The exercise the Warriors prefer is the trap bar deadlift.
One of the primary muscles that it works?
Yup, the gluteus maximus.
Steph’s the second strongest on our team pulling the deadlift.” ³
On the court, the Golden State Warriors won consecutive NBA championships.
Also, Steph Curry was voted Most Valuable Player in the NBA twice.
See some of Curry’s magic – the best plays of the 2015/2016 season in this video:
11 Great Strength Training Ideas for You
Steph Curry’s successful deadlift rehab experience can help you as well:
#1. Strengthen your hips
The deadlift helped Curry strengthen his hips so he could take the stress off of his ankles.
How much you deadlift is not the point.
Now you know that one of the best ways on the planet to build total-body strength is the deadlift.
#2. All the benefits of deadlifts (with even lighter weight)
True, Stephen Curry deadlifts 400 pounds, but you do not have to deadlift heavy to gain the powerful benefits of deadlifts.
#3. No matter your mobility or age
Despite all the fantastic benefits of squats, not everyone has the mobility to squat.
But most people can learn how to deadlift.
No matter what your age, the deadlift will make you stronger.
#4. Trap bar deadlifts rock
You do not have to do the conventional straight bar deadlift.
Whether you have back problems or not, you can do trap bar dead lifts.
Steph Curry and the Golden State Warriors use the trap bar deadlift.
Use trap bar deadlifts to maximize the development of your glutes and hamstrings.
#5. Minimum equipment needed to start deadlifting
All you need is:
- One good beginner deadlift workout routine
- A 12 Week deadlift workout program
- Learn how to deadlift like a boss
- The Simplest DIY Deadlift Platform for Beginners
- Best Deadlift Equipment: Home Gym Guide; Start Lifting Today!
8 Times Stephen Curry Shocked The World
Focus On Your Lower Body Strength
#6. Unleash your athletic potential
Hip and lower body strength is the secret ingredient to unleash your athletic potential, whether you are:
- an Olympic runner like Allyson Felix,
- a powerlifter like Lamar Gant,
- a running back like Saquon Barkley,
- an actor like Hugh Jackman, or
- an 82-year-old grandmother like Shirley Webb
#7. Build core strength and balance with Yoga
Also, practice the single-leg hip airplane yoga pose to build hip strength, core strength, and balance
See Yoga and Strength Training Are Perfect Partners; Here’s Why! for additional details on the benefits of yoga for strength training.
#8. Prevent ankle injuries
Learn how to load your hips to unload your ankles and prevent ankle injuries as taught by Keke Lyles
See 6 Common Deadlift Injuries and How to Prevent Them for more tips on how to stay healthy while deadlifting.
#9. Do single-leg exercises
#10. Do Bulgarian split-squats
Do rear foot elevated single-leg squats
Visit The Bulgarian Split Squat: 15 Benefits, How To + Form Tips for a deeper dive into this fantastic exercise.
#11. Learn how to hip hinge
Watch the video below to learn how to hip hinge:
Steph Curry’s Most Spectacular Feats of Strength
So, what is Stephen Curry’s greatest feat of strength?
It is not his 400-pound deadlift, nor is it that he is the best shooter (and possibly best player) of all time.
His secrets to success are:
- Curry sticks to his routine.
- He is a hard worker.
- He works on his core strength as much as he works on his jump shot.
- Curry never gave up. He had many left and right ankle injuries, but he did not give up.
Stephen Curry is not the tallest or most massive player in the NBA.
But many think he is one of the greatest of all time.
Look how far deadlifting and his work ethic have brought him.
You can do the same with the deadlift to change your body and improve your health and fitness.
Knowing how much the deadlift helped Stephen Curry become the legend he is, use the following posts to get started deadlifting today:
- See the recommended deadlift equipment to get started today, even at home.
- Learn How to Deadlift for Beginners – A Step-by-Step Guide
- Use this 12-Week Deadlift Program for Beginners in Fitness or Powerlifting
- How to Deadlift Like a Boss In 5 Simple Steps
- 50 Essential Deadlift Tips and Tricks Every Beginner Should Know
- How To Do A Dumbbell Deadlift: Proper Form, Benefits + Variations
- 11 Great Trap Bar Deadlift Benefits You Didn’t Know
- What Muscles Does a Hex Bar Deadlift Work?
- 20 Amazing Shaquem Griffin Bench Press Reps Will Blow Your Mind
- 5 Fantastic Ed Coan Deadlift Program Tips You Need to Know
- Saquon Barkley Squat: Secrets of the Most Electrifying NFL Runner
- 5 Allyson Felix Deadlift Workout Plan Results
- Hugh Jackman Deadlift: How He Got Ripped For ‘Wolverine’
- Franco Columbu Deadlift Record Will Inspire You to Achieve Your Dreams
- 11 Inspiring Lamar Gant Deadlift Facts Every Fan Should Know
- A Shirley Webb Deadlift Will Make You Strong in 5 Amazing Ways
- 5 Best Deadlift Shoes to Get the Most out of Every Single Rep