Thanks so much for such an informative repply!
WhAt do you think is the best replacement for sq and dl in 5/3/1 so it doesnt loose its good reputation as an awesome strength building routi e?
I had this issue (L5 / S1 prolapse) and did not SQ or DL for about 12years! (I wouldn’t reccomend this long off) I did, however train the abs & low back with the intention ofstabilising the area. I began very light BB rows and made slow progress eventually I realised as I wasn’t getting any problems associated with lifting and I was BB rowing 300+ lb I should be fine deadlifting it. I tried it for a couple of sets of 3, back hurt the day after.
I decided to try even lower weight and fit in with the ‘start too light’ ethos of 5/3/1. I began (Sept 2009) with a training max of 145 kg, using 122.5kg and getting 13 reps not using a belt and getting extremely short of breath! Anyway I added 5kg per cyle for about a year and then dropped to adding 2.5kg before my first reset at about 18 months in.
You can strengthen the supporting structures and minimise pain by avoiding actions which aggravate the condition (i.e. forward flexion of the lower back). I also foun that the Squat was the lift most likely to cause pain, front squat was much less likely to cause pain (but I hate it with a vengence!) but I did find that a safety squat bar helped enormously allowing me to train a similar movement and then do ‘normal’ squats for short periods (pre injury I had a 230kg SQ in competition) and built up to a fairly easy 160kg normal squat last year.
Yes you can substitute exercises in 5/3/1 but ensure you are doing the SQ & DL correctly before you ditch one or both. Try front SQ or try a safety squat bar, maybe try a shrug bar or front squat harness. Be creative, adaptable and never give in![/quote]