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Front Squats and Lower Back

Hey everybody just a couple of quick questions…

Just started Front Squats again in my new program. Im moving more weight now compared to the last time i tried them and Im getting bruises on my delts where the bar sits. Now Im guessing is this normal (like scabs on shins for deads) and I just have to get used it but just wanted to ask anyway?

What other good exercises are there for lower back besides Hyper’s and reverse hyper’s? Ive got Hyper’s in my program at the moment and they’re causing me some pain in the groin area about half way through my set, so just seeing what I can replace it with. I cant think of anything at the moment. Please dont say Deads cos Ive got rack deads on another day.

Cheers in advance

bams

What are your rack deads? You’re pulling from the pins? How high? If you’re rack pulls are at or above the knee, then you are not involving the lower back as much. You are working more of the muscles involved in the lockout…upper back.

So if that is the case, I think you are boxing yourself in to this idea that you can’t do conventional deads some other time in the week for some lower back work.

But to answer your question, you can do back extensions…either 45 or 90 degrees. Good mornings work the lower back…more so the glutes and hams…but the lower back is definitely involved.

[quote]JPCleary wrote:
What are your rack deads? You’re pulling from the pins? How high? If you’re rack pulls are at or above the knee, then you are not involving the lower back as much. You are working more of the muscles involved in the lockout…upper back.[/quote]

They’re at the knees, and thats what I’m using them for. To focus on upper back.

Well I did conv. deads in my last program, and usually like to do them on back day. This program I’ve got Legs/lower back on Tuesday and Thursday for Upper Back so I thought Id change it up a bit. I do have RDL’s on tuesday though, more for hammies than lower back though.

Well hyper’s and back extensions are the same, if we’re thinking of the same exercise that is lol. GM’s would be good but as said already Ive got RDL’s so it wouldn’t be needed for both exercises to be in the same day.

Im using it for my fourth of fifth exercise and need something to replace it with.

Good mornings.

There are many variations: myself, I prefer straight back, to 3 different heights in the rack.

The lowest being as far as possible while maintaining proper Romanian DL form (that is to say, butt pushed back, knees rather slightly bent, and being as HIGH as possible while getting a good stretch. In my case that is with the lower back approximately parallel to the floor.

Middle being with the pin about 6 inches higher than that, and top being another approximately 6 inches higher. The top position should be for quite high reps, e.g. 30 reps is good.

While it seems logical that Romanians and GM’s would be extremely similar for the back, they don’t feel that way to me. And so even though you said “besides GM’s” I would still pick them.

I do conventional dead lifts on Tuesday, and rack pulls from above the knee on Friday, which is trap and shoulder day. I shrug the weight at the top of the rack pull up until the weight is to heavy to shrug. At that point, I just do the rack pull portion.

For lower back strength I like weighted 45 degrees back raises, good mornings, heavy dumbbell swings, and pull-throughs.

[quote]Bill Roberts wrote:
Good mornings.

There are many variations: myself, I prefer straight back, to 3 different heights in the rack.

The lowest being as far as possible while maintaining proper Romanian DL form (that is to say, butt pushed back, knees rather slightly bent, and being as HIGH as possible while getting a good stretch. In my case that is with the lower back approximately parallel to the floor.

Middle being with the pin about 6 inches higher than that, and top being another approximately 6 inches higher. The top position should be for quite high reps, e.g. 30 reps is good.

While it seems logical that Romanians and GM’s would be extremely similar for the back, they don’t feel that way to me. And so even though you said “besides GM’s” I would still pick them.[/quote]

Now I’m guessing that by 3 different heights in the rack, you mean different ROM’s?
Doing all of those different ROM’s each set?

And yeah thats how I do good mornings as well, maybe not to parallel but all the other stuff.

As for feeling the same, I’ve never done RDL’s and Gm’s in the same program or for he same rep ranges. Using them for different things at different times and I’ve always looked at them as the same sort of exercise but with different leverages.

Ill give them a shot next Tuesday, would you recommend a certain parameter or would I stick to the same as for hyper’s (3x20-25)?

I give myself two lower body days a week. Sunday I would focus on deadlifts and add some leg press afterwards and then wednesday I would squat heavy. I found I got stronger on both for quite a while as long as I kept the volume in check.

[quote]DOHCrazy wrote:
I do conventional dead lifts on Tuesday, and rack pulls from above the knee on Friday, which is trap and shoulder day. I shrug the weight at the top of the rack pull up until the weight is to heavy to shrug. At that point, I just do the rack pull portion. [/quote]

Well you’ve got a point, but my recovery isnt that great. I couldnt get away with doing Squats, Conv. Deads and Rack Pulls in the same training week.

Cheers mate
bams

[quote]ebomb5522 wrote:
For lower back strength I like weighted 45 degrees back raises, good mornings, heavy dumbbell swings, and pull-throughs. [/quote]

Pull Throughs were good but I cant use them any more as my gym has only one place I can do them (cable station) and the stack only goes to 160lbs. I can chuck a 20kg on there as well but even then Im doing about 30 reps, and thats as a final exercise.

Like I said to Bill I’ll try Gm’s next week, and see how they go. If the end result is getting a back like yours man, I’ll be ecstatic!

Cheers
bams

[quote]bams_101 wrote:
Bill Roberts wrote:
Good mornings.

There are many variations: myself, I prefer straight back, to 3 different heights in the rack.

The lowest being as far as possible while maintaining proper Romanian DL form (that is to say, butt pushed back, knees rather slightly bent, and being as HIGH as possible while getting a good stretch. In my case that is with the lower back approximately parallel to the floor.

Middle being with the pin about 6 inches higher than that, and top being another approximately 6 inches higher. The top position should be for quite high reps, e.g. 30 reps is good.

While it seems logical that Romanians and GM’s would be extremely similar for the back, they don’t feel that way to me. And so even though you said “besides GM’s” I would still pick them.

Now I’m guessing that by 3 different heights in the rack, you mean different ROM’s?
Doing all of those different ROM’s each set?[/quote]

Not each set, but first the lowest position, then a couple of sets at the middle, and then a high rep set at the highest position.

This is just a personal method.

My reasoning behind it is that the squat and DL do not have the back as far over as is the case with the parallel GM. Even the one that has the spotting bars 6" higher than that is still further bent over than is the case in those lifts.

And while the highest position is past what would be any sticking point for lower back strength, very high rep work like that is supposed to have more carry-over to the remainder of ROM than is the case with low or moderate rep partials.

Actually it’s fairly new to me to do them this way: longer term, I did one height, the one 6" above the parallel position. There’s certainly nothing wrong with using only one height.

I would try ramping up with 10 reps per set. Not that higher reps can’t be good, but if you dont’ know the weight for parallel (if you are going to do that) then with higher reps you could accumulate a lot of volume on the way to finding the weight.

Also not that there is anything wrong with heavier weights, but to start with 10 is a good choice.

And then the midrange, taking a reasonable jump up for the first set (15-20%) from what had been achieved in the top set at parallel, and then make your best guess for a second set in the midrange. (If wanting to do two.)

For the top, a pretty good jump can be made from the top weight used from the mid-position, even though high reps are planned. About say another 20%.

[quote]Bill Roberts wrote:
I would try ramping up with 10 reps per set. Not that higher reps can’t be good, but if you dont’ know the weight for parallel (if you are going to do that) then with higher reps you could accumulate a lot of volume on the way to finding the weight.

Also not that there is anything wrong with heavier weights, but to start with 10 is a good choice.

And then the midrange, taking a reasonable jump up for the first set (15-20%) from what had been achieved in the top set at parallel, and then make your best guess for a second set in the midrange. (If wanting to do two.)

For the top, a pretty good jump can be made from the top weight used from the mid-position, even though high reps are planned. About say another 20%.

[/quote]

Yeah I’ll try that Tuesday. I really like that idea as well, ramping as well as shorter Rom’s with progressing sets. Could be something to try with other exercises.

Like Full deads for first set, then add some weight for the next set but shortened ROM (say pulling from pins just below the knee), then add more weight and pull from above the knee.

Thanks alot Bill
bams

Glad to help!