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Thread: Low Back Pain

  1. #1
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    Feb 2019
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    Default Low Back Pain

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    I started feeling some low back pain last Friday after a 320x5 PR set of squats. See video below:

    YouTube

    The pain is located on my left side between my spine and hip, and up the ridge of my hip a little. It feels muscular to me, but Iím not sure. It hurts the most when I bend over to pick something up and my lumbar rounds a little. Itís painful to tie my shoes or put my left pant leg on. Itís the worst in the morning and eases up some by evening. Usually no pain when walking. Some pain if I sit for a long time.

    The following Monday I was able to do some volume work of 4x5 at 290. Hurt a little at the bottom of the squat and halfway up, but I was able to push through. I also pulled a deadlift PR of 355x5 on that same day. Today I tried 275, but felt my low back rounding some on rep 3 and pain in my back, so I stopped.

    As you can see from the video above, Iíve been having trouble keeping my low back from rounding some on heavy squat sets. I have had similar issues with the deadlift in the past, but that didnít cause pain quite like this. Not sure how to fix this form error.

    The pain has not gotten better over the past week, so I thought I would reach out for some advice on what I should to do next. Do I need to lay off squat and deadlift until this heals up? Or just go light? I started LP back in January and started TM style programming in August. Iím 35 and 215lb (up from 185lb in January).

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2019
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    Default

    Hi, not an SCC, regarding on keeping your lower back from rounding try keeping your chest out as well as holding your breath and squeezing your abs.

    Regarding healing, I'd go to the doctor if I were you.

    Wish this helps.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
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    Olympia, WA
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevo View Post

    Regarding healing, I'd go to the doctor if I were you.
    I donít necessarily believe this is sound advice based on what you reported. A doctor is not likely to provide you with any information you donít already have, is likely to advise you to reduce activity, and will almost certainly over-treat something you have already identified as a form error.

    Keep the load heavy but do 4 sets of 3-1-2 tempo reps. Concentrate on keeping low back tight and post another video.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Will Morris View Post
    Keep the load heavy but do 4 sets of 3-1-2 tempo reps. Concentrate on keeping low back tight and post another video.
    Hey Will, thank you so much for taking the time to help me. Iíve never done tempo squats before, so hopefully I interpreted your instructions correctly. I did 4 sets of 3 reps at 285lb. I tried to get the 3-1-2 rhythm. The ascent was slow just because it was hard and I was concentrating on keeping my low back tight.

    Set 1: YouTube
    Set 2: YouTube
    Set 3: YouTube
    Set 4: YouTube

    My back has been aching all weekend. But, pain during these squats was manageable. I felt some rounding, but not excessive. I think I have the tendency to rush the ascent and my back rounds to get my hips under more. It is so tough to slow down on a heavy squat.

    I went ahead and pulled my scheduled 360lbx5 deadlift PR. Some minor pain when setting my back on the early warmups, but after that I didnít really feel any discomfort until after the sets were over.

    Any tips or major form errors on the tempo squats? Where do I go from here with my TM programming, light day on Wednesday with more tempo squats? Hold off on intensity work or back off some? How long do these types of back pain issues typically take to resolve?

  5. #5
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    Feb 2019
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    Light squat this morning. Decided to do 3x3 tempo squats at 245lb. Even at this lighter weight I still feel the tendency to round my low back. Again, some pain but not unbearable. Hereís set 2:

    YouTube

  6. #6
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    Feb 2019
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    Tried for 2 sets of 3 at 315lb and it didnít work out. Managed one set of 2 and then just a single with a fail on the second rep. Iím having trouble learning how to push through a hard rep without losing some tension in the low back. And looking at the failed rep, I also allowed my upper back to round slightly on the way down and I guess didnít stay tight at the bottom.

    Set 1: YouTube
    Set 2: YouTube

    I followed these up with a backoff set of 5 reps at 285lb just to get a little more volume in. Any form critiques and/or advice on how to proceed with programming and recovery from here? Back pain is still about the same.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Doyle View Post
    Tried for 2 sets of 3 at 315lb and it didn’t work out. Managed one set of 2 and then just a single with a fail on the second rep. I’m having trouble learning how to push through a hard rep without losing some tension in the low back. And looking at the failed rep, I also allowed my upper back to round slightly on the way down and I guess didn’t stay tight at the bottom.

    Set 1: YouTube
    Set 2: YouTube

    I followed these up with a backoff set of 5 reps at 285lb just to get a little more volume in. Any form critiques and/or advice on how to proceed with programming and recovery from here? Back pain is still about the same.
    Sir,

    Even on the 285 x 3 sets, these are too heavy. You aren't hitting depth, and you are struggling to get back up to the top. Tempo squats are there to hone in your technique and these are not what I would consider good technique. Then, we have to address the fact that you went from 285 for a very difficult, less than optimal set. The 245 was okay, but you are taking the "reaching back with your hips" way too far and you are very bouncy at the bottom when you should be able to maintain rigid posture.

    The best critique I could give you is that you probably require the services of a coach, preferably one that has experience working with someone with back pain. Your form and your programming both need some work.

  8. #8
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    Feb 2019
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    Quote Originally Posted by Will Morris View Post
    Sir,

    Even on the 285 x 3 sets, these are too heavy. You aren't hitting depth, and you are struggling to get back up to the top. Tempo squats are there to hone in your technique and these are not what I would consider good technique. Then, we have to address the fact that you went from 285 for a very difficult, less than optimal set. The 245 was okay, but you are taking the "reaching back with your hips" way too far and you are very bouncy at the bottom when you should be able to maintain rigid posture.

    The best critique I could give you is that you probably require the services of a coach, preferably one that has experience working with someone with back pain. Your form and your programming both need some work.
    Will, thanks for the honest feedback. I guess I didnít recognize that my form had gotten so bad. Iím not sure when Iíll be able to get help from a coach, but Iíll definitely look into it soon. I think Pete Troupos is less than 2 hours from me, so Iíll probably reach out to him.

    You said I was taking the reaching back with my hips thing too far. Does that mean I need to squat with a slightly more upright back? I have been emphasizing reaching back with my hips because I thought I needed to lean over more, and to keep my knees from sliding forward.

  9. #9
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    Aug 2014
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    starting strength coach development program
    am I wrong?
    or is that bar too high on the shoulder ?

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