The B Stance RDL: Master in 5 Steps

Are you looking to take your leg strength to the next level? Look no further than B stance RDLs. 

As a certified personal trainer, I’ll help you learn how to master the B Stance RDL in this guide.

It’s a unique exercise that will help you target posterior chain muscles like hamstrings and glutes (butt muscles). 

Get ready to boost your coordination, improve stability, and enhance your strength. 

Here’s what’s coming up.

Guide to Mastering A
B Stance RDL

Resistance band variation of B stance RDL.

1. Starting Position

  • Stand with your feet shoulder width apart. 
  • Step forward with your left foot and position it slightly in front of your right foot.
  • Point the toes of your back foot slightly outward.

2. Barbell Placement

  • Hold a barbell with an overhand grip, with palms facing your body. 
  • Position the barbell in front of your thighs, close to your body.
  • Keep your arms fully extended and hands slightly wider than shoulder width. 

3. Movement

  • Start the movement by hinging at the hips.
  • Push your butt back as you lower the barbell towards the ground.
  • Keep your back straight, chest up, and core engaged throughout the movement. 
  • Maintain a slight bend in your front knee while keeping your back leg straight.

4. Lowering The Weight

  • Lower the barbell along the front of your leg that’s forward.  
  • Lower it just until you feel a stretch in your hamstrings. 
  • No need to go all the way to the floor.
  • Maintain proper form and avoid rounding your back. 
  • Use less weight if you feel your form is compromised. 

5. Return To Starting Position

  • Push through your front foot to bring your body back to starting position
  • You’ll feel your hamstring and glutes engage. 
  • Squeeze your glutes at the top of the movement. 
  • This will help target the glutes, engage your core, and keep your spine in a safe position. Learn more here.

What Is A B Stance RDL? 

A B stance RDL (Romanian deadlift) is a variation of the standard RDL. 

With standard RDLs, your feet are shoulder width apart and aligned with each other. In a B stance RDL, one foot is in front of the other, kind of resembling the letter “B.” 

This stance is a unique way to vary your training. It allows you to train your lower body unilaterally, meaning one leg at a time. This can make up for any weakness you may have in one leg versus the other. 

Proper form and technique in the B stance RDL plays an important role for maximizing results and minimizing the risk of injury.

What Muscles Does A
B Stance RDL Target? 

b stance rdl

A B Stance RDL targets the lower body posterior chain muscles. 

The posterior chain is the backside of your body. It includes your upper, mid, and lower back, along  with your hamstrings, glutes, and calves. 

  • The main muscles that the B stance RDL targets are your hamstrings and glutes. Strong hamstrings and glutes work to stabilize your hip bones and align your spine. 
  • Some of the pressure is relieved off your lower back when your hams and glutes are strong. The hamstring and gluteal muscles each have three individual muscles.

They all can be easy overlooked, like for example, the gluteus minimus.

The B Stance RDL is also a great way to work and strengthen other back muscles like the erector spinae. These long muscles extend from your the base of your head to your pelvis.

Again, spine stabilization, balance, and mobility are better when you have a well developed and for posterior chain. 

Alternatives To B Stance RDL 

If you’re looking for alternatives to the B stance RDL, there are several to choose from. Incorporate them into your training routine to target similar muscle groups. 

You’ll notice there’s variations in foot positioning and equipment used. It’s nice to have different exercises in your arsenal to keep workouts exciting. 

Remember to choose exercises that align with your fitness goals, preferences, and available equipment.

Here are a few B stance RDL alternatives to consider. 

Conventional RDLs

Traditional RDLs are a variation of the deadlift. RDLs target the hamstrings, glutes, and lower back. 

A difference with RDL is that it’s performed with feet in a hip width stance, instead of shoulder width like the B stance RDL. Both feet are parallel in a conventional RDL. 

Single-Leg RDLs

Any single leg movement is ideal for unilateral strength and stability. Perfect for athletes and everyday people alike. 

It’s the same movement as an RDL, except the non-supporting leg is extended behind you. This variation will intensify the engagement of stabilizer muscles to help keep your balance. 

Kettlebell or Dumbbell RDLs

These variations of RDLs use kettlebells or dumbbells instead of a barbell. 

These allow for greater range of motion because you can get lower to the ground. An added challenge is to hold only one weight at a time to activate stabilizer muscles. 

Sumo Deadlifts

Sumo deadlifts get a lot of criticism for being cheating. Because of its wider stance with feet turned outward, there’s a shorter distance for the weight to travel. 

This fact makes it “easier” to move weight compared to a regular deadlift. 

Whatever you think about this exercise, it’s still a great way to work your posterior chain. 

The sumo deadlift places more emphasis in the inner thighs (adductors), because of the outward position of the feet. 

Good Mornings

Good mornings are a super exercise to really target your lower back and hamstrings. 

But be warned if you have lower back flare ups, as this exercise can be done improperly. 

Place a barbell across your upper back and bend forward by hinging at the hips. Keep your legs slightly bent. 

Glute Bridges 

The glute bridge is a functional and athletic movement beneficial for all. It isolates and activates the entire glute muscles effectively. 

Try it by lying on your back with feet flat. Lift your hips toward the ceiling by pushing through your heels. Squeeze your glutes at the top of the movement. 

Nordic Hamstring Curls

Perhaps the most difficult and hardcore bodyweight hamstring exercise, the nordic curl is a good change from machines. 

This is a nice exercise with partners. Kneel down while your partner holds your feet. Slowly lower your upper body towards the ground. Use your arms to catch yourself and push back up to the starting position. 

Benefits of B Stance RDLs 

There are unique advantages of incorporating B stance RDLs into your workout routine.

Train Unilaterally 

Unilateral training helps to identify muscle imbalances. This happens when one side of the body is stronger than the other.

By working each leg somewhat independently in a B stance RDL, you strengthen weaker muscles and promote balance.

You will work to correct any asymmetries in your body, leading to an overall balanced physique. 

Increase Core Stability 

Unilateral exercises will engage the core muscles to a greater extent because they require more stabilization. 

Since you are working the front leg more in a B Stance RDL, the back leg and core are activated to maintain form and balance. 

By challenging each side separately, you can improve the body’s sense of body control and movement. 

Functionally Develop Strength 

There are many real life movements that require you to move one leg at a time. 

These include movements like walking, running, and climbing the stairs. 

When you train unilaterally, you develop functional strength. Functional strength allows you to improve your quality of life because you can do everyday movements easier. 

An added bonus is that all of these things can help reduce the likelihood of injury. 

By increasing your core stability and improving body control, you will minimize the risk of strain or injury in your daily activities of living. 

Drawbacks of
B Stance RDLs

B stance RDLs may not be right for everyone. Here are some potential drawbacks you can encounter while performing this movement. 

Struggle to Balance  

This movement can be tough for some people and tricky to learn, especially for seniors with balance problems.

  • The B stance RDL has a shifted foot position, with the front leg doing the work, while the back leg provides balance. 
  • If you are unsteady on your feet, feel dizzy during exercise, or do not feel comfortable in this position, then B stance RDLs may not be right for you.
  • If you are determined to do this exercise then try it without weight first. Add weight if you feel comfortable trying it out for a few reps. 

Cannot Lift Maximal Loads  

The B stance RDL is done unilaterally, so you may not be able to lift as heavy as a conventional RDL. 

  • Lifting too heavy on this movement may pose a risk of injury to your lower back or hamstrings. 
  • If you need to take a rest day before doing the B Stance RDL, then take it. You can do light cardio on rest days to maintain fitness.

If you want to lift for maximal load, try the sumo deadlift or conventional RDL. The point of the B stance RDL is to focus on training and stretching the front leg. Lift a weight that you are comfortable with. 

Less Time Efficient  

B Stance RDLs do require you to train one leg at a time. You also have to rest in between sets.

If you’re short on time this may not be the best exercise to do. It will take double the time of say, a conventional RDL or nordic hamstring curl. 

However, if you want to target your posterior chain and work to improve muscle imbalances, this is the way to go. Just make the decision beforehand with whatever works best with your schedule. 

Common Mistakes to Avoid 

There are common mistakes made during B stance RDLs. By being aware of the pitfalls, you can actively avoid them. 

The first mistake is with your back. You can round the back forward, or arch it backward. This can put stress on the spine that can increase your risk of injury. 

It’s important to maintain a neutral spine through the movement by flexing your core.

The second mistake is with your knees. If you let your knees cave in, this can cause instability and put stress on your knees. 

Actively engage your legs (glutes and thighs) to stay aligned. Imagine pushing your knee out as you move. This helps to actually do it. 

The third mistake is by using momentum. There is a natural momentum with the B stance RDL. However, excessive momentum reduces the movement’s effectiveness. 

Focus on controlled movements and good range of motion. Use a weight that allows you to have proper form. 

Bottom Line 

Mastering the B Stance RDL can unlock the benefits of unilateral strength and balance. Plus, you’ll activate your posterior chain in a new way. 

Consistency and progressive overload are essential for seeing gains. Add The B Stance RDL into your training arsenal and watch your strength grow.

For more on essential exercises, check out these 15 Key Exercises for Your Daily Routine.


Shalom is a content creator, musician, and a teacher at heart. As a certified personal trainer, his goal is to encourage others to lead healthier lives and to get buff in the process!