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Good Mornings and ME work


Are good mornings still the preferred ME exercise or have squat variations trumped them. Also, are box squats still recommended even though I don't squat with a wide stance, it kills my hips.


Box squats are not only for those who squat wide. I started squatting with a closer stance lately and use them for speed out of the hole. that and to teach me to sit back.


I still see goodmornings being used as ME work, just not as much as when I started powerlifting. ME work should be largely determined by your weaknesses, so whether or not to do them frequently is dependent on the lifter. I do them as an ME move about once every 3 weeks, as I have done for the last couple of months. My numbers are going up steadily in the squat and the pull so I love the GM.


Good mornings can be hell on some backs. Years ago I tried suspended gms and hurt my back on them three consecutive workouts. I prefer them for rep work personally.


+100 on that.


Max Effort good mornings build strength like no other exercise. No offense to anyone who's posted on here but, the only reason an exercise that works the shit out of your back actually hurts your back is because something is weak and you have gone too heavy. You have to keep in mind, the purpose of a good morning is to raise your squat and deadlift. It's not to raise your good morning.


Hmmm... I've gotten so much out of GMs as heavy supplementary work. I guess it's time to hop on the ME GM bandwagon. I know Louie (at least he used to) recommended working up to a 3 rep max. Is that what ya'll do for you ME GMs?


Also, there's so much that can be changed up with a GM. It seems like you can make a GM focus on anything except your quads. Does accomadating resistance make it more back intensive?


No offense taken and I'm going to disagree with you here for the sake of learning something...if I end up being wrong at least I'm walking away with a better understanding of this.

First off I have limited clearance between L4 and L5...I piss them off and vertabrae is sitting on nerve and life becomes very unpleasant.

In lieu of GM's, I do alot of SLDL's off of boxes using various rep schemes, sometimes light sometimes for 3-5 reps. I think my best is somewhere around 500+ for a triple.

When I do GM's, I end up having to use excessively light weight in order to actually feel like it's hitting things right. I'd be lucky to triple 315 from the seated position.

I know one roadblock for me is the awkwardness of using a regular barbell. Westside uses the SSB quite a bit. I've experimented with the manta ray and it makes it a little easier but not by much.

I feel like the GM puts way too much stress on the lower back because of the bar placement...I'd say "law of torque" but I'm not referring to twisting forces. It's the difference between holding a 10 lbs. plate in your hand and putting a 10 lbs. plate on the end of a broomstick and holding the opposite end (sledgehammer trick). That's what I feel like is happening with the GM. With the weight high on my back and the bend at the waist, all of that stress is multiplied and placed on my lower back, versus a SLDL where the broomstick isn't quite as long, resulting in less stress.

The logical answer would be to reduce the weight, just as you said, but I'd expect there to be some correlation between SLDL and GM if you know what I mean. And if I'm only able to handle less than half of what I can using an SLDL, do you think the GM is really that beneficial in this case?

I heard alot of people screw up the JM press and they don't feel it in their triceps, and the answer provided for that was "if you don't feel them, don't do them." that's where I am with the GM.


Seems like some fairly mixed responses but I'm going to give them a go for a good 3 week cycle and see how it turns out.


As with all exercises you will find it different for different lifters.

The trick I find with GM's is that you have to leave your ego at the door.

Less is more, I can use heavier weights for them but form drops off and it doesn't hit the right places as well.

Go light to start, get the form down, stick to no less then 3 rep sets.

Trial and error.


Mine came from suspended good mornings. I don't recall hurting them on any others. My point is if you consistently get hurt on the same exercise, and there are others getting it done, avoid the one that gives you problems. Currently I'm not doing any.


It's a good point you make there. Some exercises aren't right for everyone. I do believe you need to try them because many use the excuses like, squats are bad for your knees, etc.

I have physical limits due to some injuries. I avoid certain things and feel strong and make some gains. I do the bad stuff for me, and I pay.

I would say to make sure it's due to a problem and not lazy or sissy when you avoid what are considered good exercises.


SLDLs, RDLs, Deadlifts, etc are all WAY less stressful. Which is why the weight on GMs doesnt have to be ridiculous to get benefit from it. But, and I know this is confusing, it should still be a max effort exercise for anyone who uses this system of training.

I'll use an example from personal experience to clarify what I am saying. First off, I feel your pain with your back. I fratured my L3 a couple years ago and I am still trying to get back to normal. Shit sucks.

Anyway, my best pull ever is 804. When I did that, I had a low 500 something cambered bar gm for a 3rm. Form was ok and I felt it in all my pulling muscles. A few months later, I got disaster-looking 610 for 1 and my deadlift went to shit. What I am saying is, dont sacrifice form for weight, you get zero benefit from a high risk exercises so it's double counter productive.

I am throwing all of my old GM maxes out and starting over again with perfect form. There is no point in doing them in such a way that is only going to rasie your good morning and not your total.


Also, there has to be a reason you are doing them in the first place. If they dont help your squat and dl, then dont do them.


Agreed. I'm also an older guy. these injuries happened in my early 40s. If your form is dialed in, they should be fine. I think I hurt myself with high 300s pulling in the low fives. Doing singles.

Doing a set of five with great form and reduced weight might help. Right now Josh Bryant is doing online coaching with me. No GMS yet, but maybe. He's killing me with work, but I'm recovering and making gains.


That's awesome. How are you liking his program? The guy really seems to know his shit.