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Hernia From BW Pistol Squats?

The way I’ve trained for 2 years now, rehabbing a SI joint dysfunction, is with zero vertical spinal loading.

No squats, no deadlifts, no military press…etc… - bodyweight pistols squats, russian leg curls and barbell hip thrusts have been my main lower body movements and I’ve made decent progress.

However, two months ago when doing a usual high-rep set of unweighted (bodyweight) pistol squats, about midway through a rep, I slightly lost balance to the side, and slightly reached out the other side to re-balance. Nothing drastic. At that point my back went through a slight spasm.

(I should note that I do my pistol squats off of a high box so the non-working leg can dangle all the way down, which minimizes rounding of the back.)

Two months on, my back still has that slight spasm or tightness. I can’t call it a pain, because it doesn’t hurt - it’s just a ‘sensation’ that is there. Sometimes the ‘sensation’ moves right over to the front of the body (ie. lower abs).

I used to have a bit of sciatica from my previous SI joint dysfunction, but since this back tweak, the sciatica has gone.

Do you think this is a hernia? If not (or if so) - how do I get it to go away?

Get an exam and determine if you have a hernia or not…proceed from there.

going all the way down with pistols is a good way to fuck up ur back if its already a bit fuzzy. Seriously u think just cuz u arent ‘loading’ that ur entire bw on one leg isnt enough to fuck u up? Add to that ur probably going far below parallel and rounding the spine. Recipe for disaster.

Thanks.

Scans are costly though, I just want to know if the symptoms and the manner of the injury suggests hernia or not…?

Most doctors should be able to examine you and your symptoms and make a determination without needing a scan.

[quote]bignate wrote:
going all the way down with pistols is a good way to fuck up ur back if its already a bit fuzzy. Seriously u think just cuz u arent ‘loading’ that ur entire bw on one leg isnt enough to fuck u up? Add to that ur probably going far below parallel and rounding the spine. Recipe for disaster. [/quote]

Yeah, your entire bw might be on one leg, but there is no external weight at all on your back. To your back, the weight is the same as if you just did a bodyweight double legged squat. Or simply stood up with nothing on your back.

I thought rounding your back when there is no load is ok?

I mean, otherwise people would be getting hernias every time they get out of bed or bent over to pick up a piece of paper!!

When I had my low back injury in January, I couldn’t pistol squat because of the excessive rounding at the bottom; even if it is just bodyweight there can be shear forces that are excessive for those that are injured. To echo what others suggest, don’t go so far down and/or don’t do hi-rep sets. As far as your original question, I can’t answer that, lol.

[quote]alternate wrote:
I mean, otherwise people would be getting hernias every time they get out of bed or bent over to pick up a piece of paper!![/quote]

Happens all the time.

[quote]LoRez wrote:
Most doctors should be able to examine you and your symptoms and make a determination without needing a scan.[/quote]

Yes…

Is there a bulge in your lower abdomen near your groin?

[quote]BlueCollarTr8n wrote:

[quote]alternate wrote:
I mean, otherwise people would be getting hernias every time they get out of bed or bent over to pick up a piece of paper!![/quote]

Happens all the time. [/quote]

haha, so are we meant to NEVER round our lower backs, in life, training or otherwise - whether loaded or unloaded?

When you have to pick up a piece of paper in the street, do you do perform a perfect-form Romanian deadlift? And if you’ve been terminating your Romanian deadlifts short of touching the ground because of hamstring inflexibility, do you just accept that you can’t pick up the paper, and leave it there?

Likewise, if you ever find yourself lying on the floor, do you perform a perfect-form Turkish getup with an imaginary kettlebell just to get from lying to standing?

To the guy who asked - nope I don’t have a lump around my lower left abdomen - it just sometimes feels like there is a lump there - especially when sitting. I used to have the same thing with my right side, though that comes and goes now… Is that caused by a back hernia as well?

[quote]alternate wrote:

[quote]BlueCollarTr8n wrote:

[quote]alternate wrote:
I mean, otherwise people would be getting hernias every time they get out of bed or bent over to pick up a piece of paper!![/quote]

Happens all the time. [/quote]

haha, so are we meant to NEVER round our lower backs, in life, training or otherwise - whether loaded or unloaded?

When you have to pick up a piece of paper in the street, do you do perform a perfect-form Romanian deadlift? And if you’ve been terminating your Romanian deadlifts short of touching the ground because of hamstring inflexibility, do you just accept that you can’t pick up the paper, and leave it there?

Likewise, if you ever find yourself lying on the floor, do you perform a perfect-form Turkish getup with an imaginary kettlebell just to get from lying to standing?

To the guy who asked - nope I don’t have a lump around my lower left abdomen - it just sometimes feels like there is a lump there - especially when sitting. I used to have the same thing with my right side, though that comes and goes now… Is that caused by a back hernia as well?[/quote]

You are talking about a intervertebral disk herniation. The guy who asked is talking about a traditional hernia, where a peice of your bowel “pops” through a weak spot in your abdominal wall. These are two very different processes.

People do herniate disks under zero external load. Also you reference a previous back problem, it is quite possible that you weakened or slightly herniated your disk already and that set of pistol squats simply exacerbated the issue.

See a doctor who can evaluate you and will likely advice physical therapy.

Looks like OP doesn’t know what a hernia is. You do not get them in your lower back.

why do people even respond to Alternate’s threads?

Yes, I am aware that you can get an abdominal wall hernia and an inververtebral disk one.

The ‘sensation’ (again, it’s not pain), I’m getting goes from the side of the lower back all the way round the front to the lower abdomen, so I’m not sure what it is.

Apparently, people DO herniate their intevertebral disks under zero external load. For example, Ben Bruno apparently herniated multiple disks, bending to retrieve an empty school bag from under his bed.

Also, I’m not sure if I exacerbated an existing hernia - because my previous injury was on the right side of the lower back, and I saw a physio who told me it was SI joint instability (not a hernia), and now this new ‘sensation’ is right on the opposite side (left side of my back… and left lower abdomen).

… go see a doctor?

Stop trying to self-diagnose. You clearly don’t know enough to do it.

[quote]alternate wrote:

[quote]BlueCollarTr8n wrote:

[quote]alternate wrote:
I mean, otherwise people would be getting hernias every time they get out of bed or bent over to pick up a piece of paper!![/quote]

Happens all the time. [/quote]

haha, so are we meant to NEVER round our lower backs, in life, training or otherwise - whether loaded or unloaded?

When you have to pick up a piece of paper in the street, do you do perform a perfect-form Romanian deadlift? And if you’ve been terminating your Romanian deadlifts short of touching the ground because of hamstring inflexibility, do you just accept that you can’t pick up the paper, and leave it there?[/quote]

For what it’s worth, I’ve never had an injury from weight lifting, wrestling/judo, or any other planned athletic activity – it’s always been from doing very banal activities in a rushed or thoughtless manner (usually with other factors, such as being tired or severely dehydrated). It’s the major reason why I now do a lot of yoga on top of everything else – to train myself to maintain good posture and body positioning for the ordinary things in life.

As for improperly rounding your back…it never helps, with anything, and people every day get muscle pulls and sprains (and once in a while, full on herniated discs and abdominal hernias) from doing just that.

Hell, highly athletic folks once in a while get a muscle pull from tying their shoes.

Sounds like you hurt your SIJ. Won’t performing unilateral exercises eg. pistol squats put pressure/ a torsion force through your SIJ?