Lower Back Pain - Not sure if from Squat or Deadlift Lower Back Pain - Not sure if from Squat or Deadlift

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Thread: Lower Back Pain - Not sure if from Squat or Deadlift

  1. #1
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    Default Lower Back Pain - Not sure if from Squat or Deadlift

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    Hi,

    I am 33 years old and pretty new to the program (4 weeks) . Tuesday night i was able to deadlift 300 lbs. The next morning i had back pain (i am sure i did something wrong - i kept on hitting my knees in the down phase). I pushed off my next workout until Friday mid-day at which point my back felt just fine. Because of something that came up i had to stop after the squatting 3 sets of 290 lbs. Soon thereafter the pain came back, Saturday morning the pain was worse. I must say that the pain wasn't constant, i was only when i tried bending, espicially when i tried bending my head forward whiles my torso was already bent forwards. The Pain was better today - Sunday, and I also realized that if i kept putting myself into the positions that hurt the pain would subside after a few moments, similar to a stretching exercise.
    Did I hurt myself, or is that just soreness? Should i continue training throug the pain or should rest? Any rehab exercises?
    Also, could this all be because i rounded my back at some points during squats or the deadlifts when the weight got heavy (i never squatted or deadlifted as much before)

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbscn View Post
    Hi,

    I am 33 years old and pretty new to the program (4 weeks) . Tuesday night i was able to deadlift 300 lbs. The next morning i had back pain (i am sure i did something wrong - i kept on hitting my knees in the down phase). I pushed off my next workout until Friday mid-day at which point my back felt just fine. Because of something that came up i had to stop after the squatting 3 sets of 290 lbs. Soon thereafter the pain came back, Saturday morning the pain was worse. I must say that the pain wasn't constant, i was only when i tried bending, espicially when i tried bending my head forward whiles my torso was already bent forwards. The Pain was better today - Sunday, and I also realized that if i kept putting myself into the positions that hurt the pain would subside after a few moments, similar to a stretching exercise.
    Did I hurt myself, or is that just soreness? Should i continue training throug the pain or should rest? Any rehab exercises?
    Also, could this all be because i rounded my back at some points during squats or the deadlifts when the weight got heavy (i never squatted or deadlifted as much before)
    At this point, it really doesn't matter whether it is just soreness or some minor injury. What really matters is that you have a sensory experience that is potentially keeping you from training. Most "injuries" are nothing more than tissue being exposed to a load / strain that it is not adapted to. This can happen rather acutely (as in an ACL tear) or overtime (as in shoulder impingement syndrome). Rest typically does not make these better, because the entire reason it is feeling this way is because it was exposed to something it wasn't adapted to. Preventing it from being exposed to adaptive stress does not compute. Training is almost always the answer. Videos of your squat and deadlift would be helpful.

  3. #3
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    Thank you.

    But what if i injured it because of bad form, isn't that something i would never try to adapt to?

  4. #4
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    Form is certainly important. I would never try and make the argument that form isn't important, however, there are exceptionally strong people who lift with terrible form (by our standards) and they are remarkably devoid of injury. One person that comes to mind is Ben Pollack. Ben Pollack has, by all subjective criteria, a remarkably bad technique on squat. Ben Pollack has squatted this way since before his first meet. He now squats something like 850, exactly the same way. You can adapt to poor form just like you can good form. I have terrible deadlift form, but I have never had back pain from deadlifting. I've adapted quite well to that type of stress.

  5. #5
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    I'm still a relative newbie, Squat 225, DL 245... But It amazes me that I can feel great after a workout and the next day, hurt my back bending over to put dish in the dish washer, or worse yet just getting out of bed.
    I've been hesitant to workout with back pain, but the couple of times that I have, it usually turned out to be a good workout with no pain.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Will Morris View Post
    Form is certainly important. I would never try and make the argument that form isn't important, however, there are exceptionally strong people who lift with terrible form (by our standards) and they are remarkably devoid of injury. One person that comes to mind is Ben Pollack. Ben Pollack has, by all subjective criteria, a remarkably bad technique on squat. Ben Pollack has squatted this way since before his first meet. He now squats something like 850, exactly the same way. You can adapt to poor form just like you can good form. I have terrible deadlift form, but I have never had back pain from deadlifting. I've adapted quite well to that type of stress.
    But isn't my lack of form the reason of my pain? And isn't lack of form the reason many of the serious lifting injuries out there? I did listen to your podcast with Rip where you discussed back pain, but in it you didn't discuss people with pain from weightlifting. My concern is that if my back pain is an indication of bad form I might form and i do not fix it ASAP then i might seriously hurt myself. What do you think?

  7. #7
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    Your pain may or not be from bad form. Hard to tell, but I would suggest it is not the cause. No, form is not the reason for most injuries. Doing dumb stuff is the reason for most injuries, and this becomes more true as you increase the severity.

    Your concerns are slightly misguided and chock full of maladaptive strategies. But, I almost certainly cannot convince you of the fact that you are mistaken, so, perhaps you should look into getting a coach to tidy up your form issues.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveJ View Post
    I'm still a relative newbie, Squat 225, DL 245... But It amazes me that I can feel great after a workout and the next day, hurt my back bending over to put dish in the dish washer, or worse yet just getting out of bed.
    I've been hesitant to workout with back pain, but the couple of times that I have, it usually turned out to be a good workout with no pain.
    A few months ago I deadlifted 185 kg (about 405 lb) and tweaked my back at work lifting a file from the bottom of a locker (weighing not even 3 kg containing paper files, I work at a bank)...
    I twisted somehow and then I couldn't even stand up straight. The pain was f*ing unbearable.
    I was back at the gym the next day and pain free a few days later.

  9. #9
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    I did follow your advice and continue training. The pain got better but is still there. I just wanted to point out, that the pain came from lifting. I never suffered from lower back pain before. Is this a side effect of lifting and i should just get used to it?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbscn View Post
    I did follow your advice and continue training. The pain got better but is still there. I just wanted to point out, that the pain came from lifting. I never suffered from lower back pain before. Is this a side effect of lifting and i should just get used to it?
    Itís likely that if you continue training, you will adapt and certain shit will get stronger and you wonít often tweak your back. Maybe it is your shitty form, but youíll get better. Sometimes back tweaks happen, whether you lift or not, but they heal faster when you lift.

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