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Lower Back Friendly Deadlift Substitutions?


I think I may have tweaked something in my lower back. It starts feeling better, then I deadlift, then I'm crippled again. So, I've called a deadlift moratorium for 2 weeks to let it fully heal up. However, I'd like to avoid regressing and hoped there might be some exercises I can do in the meantime to keep moving forward without aggravating the back.

I'm on a 4-day/week 531 program.

More squats, maybe?

Any ideas?


Maybe paused front-squats..

But really, 2 weeks is nothing.. you can't really regress very much in that time. However, if you mess yourself up you're going to be out for a lot longer than that.


Don't risk jacking up your back. Back injuries are the worst and you'd be smart to take some time off to avoid more serious injuries in the future. I realize that a lot of people have the sentiment that "letting an injury heal is for pussies" but whatever ...

I'm sure you have some other weak points that aren't getting much attention -- maybe you should focus on those in the mean time


squats and milk.


Straight-leg deadlifts, sumo deadlifts, trap bar deadlifts.


I sure do. I suck at squats.

Maybe replace DL day in the 531 scheme with a dynamic or speed squat day? Easier on the back, works a weak point, and should have some carryover benefit when I can start deadlifting again?


2 weeks off deadlifting will be good for you. Typically before a meet, I don't pull for two weeks and the day of the meet, I kick ass. I think that's pretty typical. All to say, just do something else and don't worry about anything having any carry over with a substitute lift. Just try something different and have a bit of fun with it.


Find yourself a good chiropractor. One that treats athletes. He should be able to correct your problems so that you will be able to train w/o repeatedly tweaking your back-provided your techinique is sound.

Best of luck with it.


On your DL day, instead of dl'ing, focus more on mobility and flexibility and anything that will help protect your back in the future. Open up your hips, wake up some sleepy hamstrings, work on your ab/ad-ductors, do some single leg work to balance out the strength between your two legs, and so on.


Whatever you can do to not aggravate your back is good. I hurt my back a few weeks ago and spent some time working on my conditioning. I doubt you have access to a belt squat machine but that might be a good alternative.

If you're weak off the floor you can do some single leg or close stance leg movements


Great stuff, thanks all for the input!!

Deadlift day will be some single leg work, and I'll be sure to make a more concerted effort to to flexibility/mobility work.





Check it out.


Awesome reading, thank you sir!