T Nation

Lower Back Issue After Max Goodmornings


SO I have been following a Westside template for sometime and recently did a max effort day with goodmonings. I have good form-very strict to avoid lumbar flexion. Everyything was great the day of the lift (3x250x3) but the next two days my lower back was junk. I am not one to get lower bad pain but this has put me out of commission. Is it the eccentric? Should I go to a suspended good morning? I need some guidance from advanced level lifters.


When you say "junk" do you simply mean super sore but you could still live a normal life or do you mean you were literally walking like a cripple, hard time getting out of bed, called out sick for work, and the like. The former is normal, the later is not. Also just FYI Westside would not have you repeat a max set for 3 sets, if you can do more, do more, if you can't, you are done, don't repeat max sets.


Thanks for the response. I was definitely more than just sore. I wanted to avoid lumbar flexion, sitting was not comfortable, sleeping was disturbed as well.


I agree with Tim.....repeating max triples could be asking for trouble . I've never seen a published WS style template written that way .


How do you feel now? If you are fine a week after or whatever it is likely you just did way too much volume and you did more damage than normal. The soreness should have been symmetrical if this is the case. If it was asymmetrical, you had tingling or numbness or sharp shooting sensations, there was likely some nerve/disc disruption. If after several days you still feel bad and are not back to normal (and not getting too much better) go see a Dr. And now you know the erectors in general and likely yours in specific don't need a ton of volume, one intense set is usually good for GM's and deads etc. Also it is likely your form was a bit off and you were too rounded, video yourself next time and post it for comments.


I did this all the time when first starting Westside training. It never crossed my mind that it could be an injury, I just knew I was gonna be sore as hell from not using my low back like that ever before. Yeah, in retrospect I did way too much volume, but my back adapted. Just soreness like you're a newb all over again (do you remember your "1st week of ever training" soreness? I do. In my nightmares :slight_smile: )

I like volume for the low back, but at a max weight your form WILL be compromised if it's a true PR attempt, so definitely some increased soreness as a result of not being in perfect posture.

On the other hand Tim's definitely right, if it's seriously asymmetrical or something else is going on you ought to be looking at it.


I'm sure Jim Wendler wrote somewhere that if he could change things he wouldn't have used the good morning as a max effort exercise; I think this is an exercise that doesn't quite agree with everyone, at least when done over 90% for singles. When I do good mornings I always do light high rep reverse hypers after, this seems to help but I don't go lower than reps of 5.


Take into account that your glutes may not be firing as well as they should be. I am with the above that it doesnt seem like a great max exercise, but if the glutes are not up to par, even with no flexion the lower back will be overworking itself due to poor glute function.