As my problem also relates to back pain, and I’m currently training using a 531 2-day routine, I feel this thread is suitable for my question.
I don’t think I have a herniated disc, but I sometimes, usually after sets of deadlifts and sometimes squats, feel some minor pain in my lower back. Also, after DL, squats if I rotate my torso to the side and down, or if I lie on my back and do those roating movements (torso on the floor, legs moving to either side) which help stretch the lower back muscles, I can hear/feel loud cracking in my (lower) back, and after that it gets a bit better (the pain goes away). I think the pain started when I did 531 AMRAP beltless sets on DL and back squats also contributed to it - meaning lower back rounding (bad form) was the culprit. This has started a few years ago.
So now when I do DL and BS I just try to keep my abs braced as much as possible, and it somewhat helps. Also doing BS with heel lifts also helps me, as this prevents LB rounding. But I just feel that my core is weak, literally I feel that it’s my weak point - imagine feeling, like you’re gonna break in half at your lower back when doing heavy DL, BS or good mornings. Also I can lift some intermediate weight in the gym, but if I go let’s say wood chopping or showelling, etc., I have to be really careful, as I can tweak my back really quickly in those kind of high rep activities. And this makes me feel really weak, and I want to change it. I already do Defranco’s Limber 11 before gym sessions, and as I only train twice a week, I for now do only a few sets of AB wheel and good mornings for my core.
Basically I just need some really effective core exercises - just a few of them, which I would hammer with great intensity. Like I said, for now I’m relying on GM, AB wheel, and sometimes Hanging leg raises. Unfortunately I don’t have a back raise apparatus. Which exercsises besides the mentioned ones are really useful for strengthening the core in your opinion.
Thanks for reading this essay, and thanks for your help.