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Replacement for RDL/Deadlifts

While i do realize there really isnt any actually replace for those 2 movements , do you guys know of anything similar that work the same muscles. Everytime i do RDL/Deadifts the next day i get an annoying tightness/pump in my lower back that doesnt really let me run or play sports. At the moment my leg routine is looking like this:

Squats working up to a 5 rep max
Front Squat
Leg Press
2 Leg curl movements.

Just making sure this doesnt cause any muscular imbalances that could leage to an injury…

when squatting, focus on pushing from the heels and pulling up with the hips…I find this definitely shifts the emphasis from the quads to at least more balance with the posterior chain. If my lower back is overworked i do superset and do my isolation (leg curls) first and light RDLs after.

Before I start recommending other exercises, are you sure you’re doing those correctly? Are you hip hinging as opposed to lifting it with your back? Perhaps you’re tight in your hips?

Why do you do the deadlifts? Are you looking for an upper back mass builder? Or are you trying to develop pulling strength?

I think RDL is the best movement out there for glute/hamstring training. I always perform them after squatting.

I have found that doing band hip thrust and band leg curls before my squats, as my warm-up routine, I can go deeper in the squats and also get better contact when doing RDL’s. The band hip thrust really gives me a great pump in the glutes and hamstrings and activates those muscles to a great extent. I do like 15-20 reps for 2-3 sets.

I also do the RDL’s slow and controlled and squeeze the glutes hard when pushing the hips forward to raise the bar from the low position. I do not go much below the knees.

Every now and then I use a trap bar instead of the straight one for a different feel.

The glute-ham raise is another terrific exercise for the hamstings, the same goes for the cable single leg curl, either lying on the floor or on a bench.

This is what I have found to work for me. Best of luck to you :slight_smile:

[quote]TheDon12 wrote:
While i do realize there really isnt any actually replace for those 2 movements , do you guys know of anything similar that work the same muscles. Everytime i do RDL/Deadifts the next day i get an annoying tightness/pump in my lower back that doesnt really let me run or play sports. At the moment my leg routine is looking like this:

Squats working up to a 5 rep max
Front Squat
Leg Press
2 Leg curl movements.

Just making sure this doesnt cause any muscular imbalances that could leage to an injury…
[/quote]
If Romanian Deadlifts are causing you lower back pain then perhaps you aren’t doing them correctly. It’s a hip hinge movement. The lower back should stay arched the entire time. You should feel it in the glutes and hamstrings. To perfect the movement you need to start out light and slowly work up the weight over time.

Actually out of the exercises you listed I would say Leg Press is the hardest one on the lower back. Especially if you use a full range of motion and your arse comes off the seat.

To answer your question Good Mornings are another popular lift that work the same muscles as what RDL’s do. Having said that though if you get a sore back from RDL’s then Good Mornings will destroy it.

Another good option is Sumo Deadlift. Sumo is an excellent lift and has your back in a more upright position to start with so you use more legs. Again though with all these lifts you have to use perfect technique. This takes a lot of practice and not going to heavy too soon until you have the lift mastered.

Check out the powerlifting forum and watch some of the videos posted. Some top lifters on that forum and plenty of guys willing to help out.

I can’t do any kind of deadlift either, and I asked Thibs if I was missing out and he said that as long as I was squatting deep I’d be fine.

If Thibs says it’s cool, then I’m not going to worry.

Ive gotten my form checked numerous of times and its been fine. I do mobility work as well since i play a lot of basketball and want to be athletic as possible when jumping. Thanks for all the input so far.

Good find Rds. Luckily ive been do A2G squats so i might just stick to that.

Well… if you’re absolutely sure you’re form is spot on then I would try 1 leg RDLs/DLs or kettelbell/db swings. Try the swings with a band for variety. Back extensions are pretty decent too.

Maybe also trying the DLs from a little higher up. It could be you can’t get in a good position.

Maybe this article will be able to help you.

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[quote]TheDon12 wrote:
Everytime i do RDL/Deadifts the next day i get an annoying tightness/pump in my lower back that doesnt really let me run or play sports. At the moment my leg routine is looking like this:

Squats working up to a 5 rep max
Front Squat
Leg Press
2 Leg curl movements.[/quote]
What does the rest of your weekly training look like, specifically back and ab/core work?

If you’re 100% sure your technique is spot-on, your lower back could simply be the weak link that’s failing/fatiguing first, depending on how much (or how little) work you’re giving it the rest of the week.

[quote]Fletch1986 wrote:
Maybe this article will be able to help you.
http://www.T-Nation.com/free_online_article/sports_body_training_performance/12_hamstrings_exercises_for_hardasses&cr= [/quote]
Mike Robertson also had a hamstring article today:
http://www.T-Nation.com/free_online_article/most_recent/top_5_hamstring_exercises

Single-leg RDLs, which he discusses there, are another good option for minimizing low back stress during the movement.

Another “easy” solution worth trying is Meadows’ idea of starting leg day with some leg curls before squats.

[quote]TheDon12 wrote:
Ive gotten my form checked numerous of times and its been fine. I do mobility work as well since i play a lot of basketball and want to be athletic as possible when jumping. Thanks for all the input so far.

Good find Rds. Luckily ive been do A2G squats so i might just stick to that.[/quote]

I had this exact same problem years ago, and it was due to relatively weak glutes and hamstrings and tight hip flexors. ANYTHING involving the lower back, even for stability, even with running, caused an uncomfortable pump and tightness in the lower back.

You most likely have the same thing going on. I solved my problem with mobility drills and glute activation drills–particularly bird dogs, lying hip thrusts, fire hydrants, toy soldiers, but kicks–and static stretching for the hamstrings and hips (Warrior stretch helps a lot with this, and single leg exercises such as stepups, single leg RDL’s, and lunges.

ART and massage can help.

Also, staying away from posterior chain exercises that target the lower back such as hyperextensions, low bar squats, and good mornings for some time helped too, as I relied more on safety bar squats, front squats, trap bar deadlifts, sumo deadlifts, and glute ham raises, until the problem resolved too.

Do you lift for recreation and play ball for some added activity or do you lift to get better with conditioning for basketball?

And as Chris said, look up Mike Robertson’s article. He also has a great DVD I watch called Assess and Correct. Also check out Magnificent Mobility by Eric Cressey and Mike Robertson.

Also, foam rolling helps too, especially on the quads, IT band, lower back, and lats.

This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.