T Nation

Can no Longer do Deads. Suggestions?

hey guys, due to lower back injuries, i have tried and tried alternate variations and still get too much pain during and after, so i am done with deads. i seems no matter how light i go, i still end up hurting myself then paying for it for a week. i found that i can generally do powercleans fine with no pain, so im guessing just keep doing those? anything else you guys can think of so i dont lose back thickness/strength? thanks!

I tend to be in the same boat.
How on earth do you do a powerclean but can’t deadlift?
I’m not at all a fan of oly lifts unless you’re very young or need to practice them for oly lift comps.
I simply deadlift with lower reps (less TUT) from the knees every in the rack every 3rd low back workout.
I also rotate in weighted hypers, reverse hypers, RDL’s (bb and one-leg db), pull-throughs, lunges, overhead squats and lots of ab work.
Ab work, and the attempt to correct my anterior pelvic tilt have tremendously improved the symptoms of my lower back problesm (L5-S1 herniation).
Where there’s a will there’s way…good luck.

What’s your form like? I also find it odd that you can power clean without pain, but not deadlift. Are you using too much weight on deads? Can you deadlift what you do for power cleans without pain?

I’m guessing your form is awful

I’ll do mostly dumbell deads these days, and rarely over the 100’s, even on strong days. I also focus more on T.U.T., and less on pausing, or locking out. Training this way won’t improve your weights at all, but it will keep the area strong, and as someone who has suffered a couple of lower back injuries just this past year (one in a strongman contest actually), I can tell you that it’s a good idea.

S

I have been told that i have good form. head up, back stays straight, no rounding whatsoever, but i guess i could be wrong. i found it bizarre myself that i can do cleans without any problems, but what can i tell ya?

i did notice that doing lighter weights with the machine has helped significantly. i guess im just your typical guy, got too much of an ego going: used to doing much higher weights and am having a hard time doing so much less. but i appreciate the feedback, and i will definitely give dumbbells a try and see how that goes.

[quote]Radjxf wrote:
How on earth do you do a powerclean but can’t deadlift?[/quote]

The form is different for both exercises. Even with a back injury debilitating my deadlift by 100 lbs, I could still power snatch the same poundages as before the injury.

[quote]Radjxf wrote:
I tend to be in the same boat.
How on earth do you do a powerclean but can’t deadlift?
I’m not at all a fan of oly lifts unless you’re very young or need to practice them for oly lift comps.
I simply deadlift with lower reps (less TUT) from the knees every in the rack every 3rd low back workout.
I also rotate in weighted hypers, reverse hypers, RDL’s (bb and one-leg db), pull-throughs, lunges, overhead squats and lots of ab work.
Ab work, and the attempt to correct my anterior pelvic tilt have tremendously improved the symptoms of my lower back problesm (L5-S1 herniation).
Where there’s a will there’s way…good luck.
[/quote]

Me too. Always fucked up my lower back with DLs. So now I only do rack pulls from knee level or a few inches below. My back feels so much better.

You might try snatch grip deads. I had a lower back injury, but could still do those.

[quote]kroby wrote:
I’m guessing your form is awful[/quote]

Reading this line and glancing at your avatar made me blow water out of my nose laughing.

Thank you

something is wrong. How are you with partials? With single limb?
What part of your back are you not rounding?

I killed my back twice through bad finishing form and laziness at hte end of a set, it literally cracked my back. I took two weeks off from anything that remotely touched my back and then went back light but again cracked it.

I have been doing rack pulls now for about six weeks without any hassle. I did try a 1RM full DL and I easily beat my PR so I’m still improving the DL that way.

I guess what I’m saying is give it some rest and concentrate on partials for a couple of months (the back is soemthing you don’t want to hurt) and then go back slowly.

If you can do PCs pain free you should consider snatches for sure. Probably my favorite lift.

Rack pulls are another great option. They’ll provide much of the DL benefit without wrenching your back. You can pile on the weight here as well. Nothing like moving a quarter ton while the clown next to you does those shoulder grinding circle shrug things with 40 lb DBs.

Snatch grip deads are a possible option as well. In my experience with them it’s nearly impossible to overload on weight due to ego simply because you’re grip will give out MUCH quicker than the standard DL grip.

for back thickness rack pulls work really good, at least they have for me. a lot of other people like bent BB rows and if you just do rack pulls and RDLs seperate you pretty just did a deadlift.

[quote]skimmy_jimmy wrote:
hey guys, due to lower back injuries, i have tried and tried alternate variations and still get too much pain during and after, so i am done with deads.

it seems no matter how light i go, i still end up hurting myself then paying for it for a week. i found that i can generally do powercleans fine with no pain, so im guessing just keep doing those? anything else you guys can think of so i dont lose back thickness/strength? thanks![/quote]

Welcome to my world. You’ll need to separate your back and legs:

Lunges
DB Lunges
light squats higher reps
Dumbell rows
Pullups

I have the same problem with deadlifts. I think it’s just the bottom portion of the lift that’s the problem. I do power cleans and rack pulls with no problems though. I also do RDLs and one leg deadlifts with no problems. Everybody is built differently you just gotta find what works for you.