Bulletproof Low Back?

alright so for the 4th time in my one year of weight training i injured my lower back again a couple days ago on the leg press machine, wasnt concentrating hard enough and pushed through my back a little too much. A couple hours later and my right QL is fucked. This is the first time ive hurt it on the leg press, but ive hurt this QL many times before.

so many times im positive that ill be able to be back to full health in two weeks or earlier, BUT i am fucking tired of this happening.

so when my back does heal im making it my primary goal, to safegaurd it from more injury.

but how should i go about this?and where do i start?

back extentions, hyper extensions, glute training,single leg training, deadlifts?

id also love to know how i can stregnthen my QLs as they are obvious very weak

how would you guys do it?

I remember reading an interesting post by Bill Roberts about an experience he had with his QL somewhere on here, if he could chime in and help me out, id love that.

Thanx

I’m not expert, but my lower back used to give me a lot of problems before I started training it.

No doctors could figure out what was wrong with it and just labeled is as “weak”. So I thought, let’s make this weak back strong and started deadlifting regularly. Within a month or two the pain had pretty much gone and now I rarely hurt it, although I get a slight ache if I sleep on my stomach.

I’m not suggesting hardcore deadlifts are the answer to your problem but they worked for me.

You’re in a unique situation since you’re low back is already irritated, but whatsyourexcuses touched on what I’ve done.

I feel my low back is pretty bulletproof, as I’ve pulled 675 beltless and don’t really round my back at all.

I attribute this to doing deadlifts for…8 years, with a significant amount of volume. I rarely (actually, never) pulled heavy singles until I approached the 600 mark, because I was training primarily for size, and thought more volume was neccessary.

My progress was also pretty slow compared to most, as I never made very large jumps in the deadlift. I pretty much just strived to add 5-10lbs to the bar each time I trained, ever since I was using something like 200lbs. Obviously, progress was not linear and consistent during that entire time.

Basically I just got strong after I had solid form, and practiced the movement enough to make it almost second nature. I never have any back problems.

knock on wood

see, i fear the deadlift because that’ what intitally set off my back injury, shitty form deadlifting with too much weight, a bad warmup, and i most likely rounded my lumbar spine a good amount. to be far though when deadlifting in a heavier range i find it almost impossible to keep my whole back flat.

ive been considering when i feel better do to do something like just deadlifting a plate for lots of sets and reps, like 10x10 or something and see where that gets me.

Besides the deadlift, DON’T forget about Good Mornings. I’ve always felt that they were under-utilized and underappreciated assets to any low back / posterior chain developmental program.

Start with them nice and light, and see where they take you.

DON’T be afraid to take them heavy (4-6 range) after a while though.

[quote]GrindOverMatter wrote:
see, i fear the deadlift because that’ what intitally set off my back injury, shitty form deadlifting with too much weight, a bad warmup, and i most likely rounded my lumbar spine a good amount. to be far though when deadlifting in a heavier range i find it almost impossible to keep my whole back flat.

ive been considering when i feel better do to do something like just deadlifting a plate for lots of sets and reps, like 10x10 or something and see where that gets me.[/quote]

Yeah, again, I never pulled anything that would cause me to lose form, and I did so much volume that my erector size and strength got built up to where my back stays flat pretty much all the time.

In your situation, it may not be the best solution as the entire movement itself could be detrimental at this point. Hard to say though. I think if you did any form of deadlifting, hitting the volume with weights you can keep perfect form would be the way to go.

Hopefully Bill chimes in with the QL issue. Here is the thread where he talks about what he is trying to do for it.

http://www.T-Nation.com/free_online_forum/sports_body_training_performance_bodybuilding/deadlift_1rm_lagging

i would say try deadlifting perhaps with less weight but more volume just like newdamage suggested

mentally, i can empathize with you because I am sort of scared of deadlifting. yesterday i pulled 318 for 4 reps and was going for a 5th , but as i was going up i felt my lower back rounding and felt like i was going to shit my spine out so i just dropped the weight

its hard to push yourself to the limit when you are scared of crossing that boundary…

[quote]NewDamage wrote:
GrindOverMatter wrote:
see, i fear the deadlift because that’ what intitally set off my back injury, shitty form deadlifting with too much weight, a bad warmup, and i most likely rounded my lumbar spine a good amount. to be far though when deadlifting in a heavier range i find it almost impossible to keep my whole back flat.

ive been considering when i feel better do to do something like just deadlifting a plate for lots of sets and reps, like 10x10 or something and see where that gets me.

Yeah, again, I never pulled anything that would cause me to lose form, and I did so much volume that my erector size and strength got built up to where my back stays flat pretty much all the time.

In your situation, it may not be the best solution as the entire movement itself could be detrimental at this point. Hard to say though. I think if you did any form of deadlifting, hitting the volume with weights you can keep perfect form would be the way to go.

Hopefully Bill chimes in with the QL issue. Here is the thread where he talks about what he is trying to do for it.

http://www.T-Nation.com/free_online_forum/sports_body_training_performance_bodybuilding/deadlift_1rm_lagging[/quote]
see, doing something like that (lighter weight, high volume deadlifts) makes a lot of sense to me, and i will be experimenting with that when my back is back to normal, since i fucked on tuesday night, its starting to feel better already, not much better, but i mostly only feel it when i stand up/sit down right now.

NewDamage-im wondeing what your deadlift form was like when you were doing high volume deadlifts? did you use a lot of leg drive or did you try to use your back to lift it?

anyways i appreciate the advice im receiving, its all good stuff, keep it coming!

[quote]GrindOverMatter wrote:

NewDamage-im wondeing what your deadlift form was like when you were doing high volume deadlifts? did you use a lot of leg drive or did you try to use your back to lift it?

anyways i appreciate the advice im receiving, its all good stuff, keep it coming!
[/quote]

It might be a good idea, it might not though, man. Depends on the nature of your back injury. I’m inclined to think that since you inured it doing deads, deads might not be the BEST prescription…the whole movement could be bad for you. Hard to see though.

Don’t get me wrong even when I was hammering the volume I was definitely pushing myself and pushing weight - its just that, I’ve been deadlifing SO long and started with such light weights that I ONLY break form on my very last rep of my very hardest set, usually.

As far as my form goes, here is a link to me with 675.

I wish that video was directly from the side so you could see my back better, but unfortunately that isn’t the case. Now, that is a max attempt, so you can see a BIT of rounding there.

I’ve never been one to turn the deadlift into a reverse squat - I bend as much as necessary and not much more as it takes my strength down. As you can see with the vid above it is a decent amount of stiff legging going on, but this if the form that I have always been most comfortable with and have “grooved.”

I tried to watch a LOT of videos of various deadlifts and when I thought I got it right I just went to work and tried to mimic it as best I can.

I will say, usually, with lighter weights I’ll use a BIT more leg drive than the video above, but not mcuh. I also pull touch and go most of the time and have always done so.

This is just me though. Your leverages may not warrant pulling this way.

yeah as for the concern of deads pummelling my back even more, yeah, that’s a legit concern, but provided my lower back goes back to where it was right before i hurt it(which is a bit of an assumption, but i feel confident i will) i know i can deadlift without hurting myself,

its just i have a problem that whenever i decide to deadlift,i want to take to the max, and as you can see this attitude has got me several back injuries.

so while im not sure if the light, high volume deadlifts will solve anything, i can almost certainly say they won’t hurt me, provided i approach them with caution.

[quote]NewDamage wrote:
As far as my form goes, here is a link to me with 675.

[/quote]

ND, that was AWESOME!

Stiff leg deads.

I used to have a lot of trouble with my lower back, due to one ham being tighter than the other. One night at the gym a guy was doing SLDs and I told him my back hurt just watching him do that. He said his back had not hurt since he started doing them.

He showed me proper form with just the bar, and told me to practice with my eyes shut so I can focus on keeping my lower back COMPLETELY FLAT throughout the movement. Told me not to lock my knees or go too low.

My lower back is bulletproof (knock wood) now, and the SLDs are why. The only injury I have had since doing them was a torn intercostal which healed in a couple weeks.

My advice, GO LIGHT until your form is spot on. Then slowly add weight. Leave your ego at home when doing SLDs, they’re not like regular deads, you don’t go as heavy with them.

[quote]NewDamage wrote:
GrindOverMatter wrote:

NewDamage-im wondeing what your deadlift form was like when you were doing high volume deadlifts? did you use a lot of leg drive or did you try to use your back to lift it?

anyways i appreciate the advice im receiving, its all good stuff, keep it coming!

It might be a good idea, it might not though, man. Depends on the nature of your back injury. I’m inclined to think that since you inured it doing deads, deads might not be the BEST prescription…the whole movement could be bad for you. Hard to see though.

Don’t get me wrong even when I was hammering the volume I was definitely pushing myself and pushing weight - its just that, I’ve been deadlifing SO long and started with such light weights that I ONLY break form on my very last rep of my very hardest set, usually.

As far as my form goes, here is a link to me with 675.

I wish that video was directly from the side so you could see my back better, but unfortunately that isn’t the case. Now, that is a max attempt, so you can see a BIT of rounding there.

I’ve never been one to turn the deadlift into a reverse squat - I bend as much as necessary and not much more as it takes my strength down. As you can see with the vid above it is a decent amount of stiff legging going on, but this if the form that I have always been most comfortable with and have “grooved.”

I tried to watch a LOT of videos of various deadlifts and when I thought I got it right I just went to work and tried to mimic it as best I can.

I will say, usually, with lighter weights I’ll use a BIT more leg drive than the video above, but not mcuh. I also pull touch and go most of the time and have always done so.

This is just me though. Your leverages may not warrant pulling this way.

[/quote]

Holy shit. Props man huge weight and perfect form doesn’t get any better then that.

[quote]Iron Dwarf wrote:
NewDamage wrote:
As far as my form goes, here is a link to me with 675.

ND, that was AWESOME!

[/quote]

x2, wow what a great pull

Thanks a lot guys. really appreciate it. Lifting partners had always told me my form looked good but that was one of the first times I had ever seen myself on video. Good to hear it looks good from the T-Nation brethren.

OP, reverse hypers, if you have accss to them, might also be a good option.

I also second the SLDL recommendation, or RDLs too. Keep the back flat and push your ass out and come back up just before you feel your back start to cave over.

Heavy good mornings

look it up.

ok, i think the suggestions of Good mornings and SLDL’s might be a bit over the top for me,considering how many injuries ive had down there, doing heavy good mornings would probably be the worst thing to possibly do right now lol.

Romanian Deadlifts are also really good for the lower back they target specifically the hamstrings but I feel they also hit your lower back more then a regular deadlift

I read in some article on this site that for some reason Farmers Walks are good for the QL.

[quote]whatsyourexcuse wrote:
I’m not expert, but my lower back used to give me a lot of problems before I started training it.

No doctors could figure out what was wrong with it and just labeled is as “weak”. So I thought, let’s make this weak back strong and started deadlifting regularly. Within a month or two the pain had pretty much gone and now I rarely hurt it, although I get a slight ache if I sleep on my stomach.

I’m not suggesting hardcore deadlifts are the answer to your problem but they worked for me.[/quote]

Agree - I had the same issue over the last three years. I wasnt deadlifting regularly at all, and I would torque my lower back on leg work like a press.

Now - I can say I have been over a year pain free in the lower back.

I also have moved to more simple compound excercises for my lower body. Just squats, deads, and simple presses