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  1. #1
    Registered User caseyjo123's Avatar
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    Upper Left Back Pain from Deadlifts...now what?

    Hey guys,

    Last week I was training my back and did 5 sets of 12 reps of deadlifts with 125lbs and noticed a little bit of a strain/pain in the upper left of my back, closer to the middle (trap area). I ignored it, as it wasn't enough to keep me from continuing. I never felt any unusual soreness afterwards and completely forgot about it. Until today when I was stiff leg deadlifting for my leg/glute routine. I only had 115lbs on the barbell, as I was planning to superset with squat jumps for many sets. It only took about 3 reps before I had to drop the barbell entirely because that same spot on my back hurt so much. It felt like a tearing/straining pain.

    I researched a little and realized that it's probably my fault for not warming up properly (was in a hurry today) and also the fact that I use an alternate grip with my right hand underneath and left hand on top. I didn't used to use this grip but I have a hard time holding onto the barbell otherwise.

    I substituted with alternating one leg stiff leg deadlifts with two 25lbs dumbbells instead, as this wasn't enough weight to aggravate that area.

    Anyway, as I am sitting here now, my back is a little sore in that spot but not very noticeably, it's really only when I pick up heavier weight that it's so painful. This is my first real workout-related injury and I am feeling a little helpless and angry at myself! I am hoping to get some advice on my situation in how to heal my back so I can incorporate deadlifts once again...how long should I stay away from them? Does anyone else have some similar experience with this kind of pain?

    Thank you!!
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  2. #2
    Mod Squad VoxExMachina's Avatar
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    Sounds like just a minor muscle pull. It ought to heal up in a week or two, provided you don't aggravate it, but in any event you just have to give it the time it needs to heal, however long. Just work around the injury and avoid anything which bothers it.

    Don't sweat it or let it get you too down. If you're going to lift, you're going to get a little dent or ding every once in awhile. They can be annoying, but it's just part of the game.
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  3. #3
    Fueled by Bacon EPolis13's Avatar
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    This is likely due to a form issue, but w/out seeing a vid of you deadlifting, it's hard to say where the problem is. I will say that it's SUPER important to really lock the lats in and tighten up the entire posterior chain BEFORE you pull the weight off the floor. And a mixed grip shouldn't cause issues like this. I mixed grip with over 400# on the bar and don't have problems. I'm also wondering if your spine is in a neutral position while you're deadlifting. A lot of ppl look straight ahead at themselves in a mirror when they DL, but depending on how they set up, that's not a neutral spine.
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    Registered User ktk8ee's Avatar
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    I've had trouble with this spot too on repeated occasions, but also with seated rows and bent rows. I'd describe it as a twinging kind of pain, that happens whenever I try to go heavier, like for a 5x5 routine.
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    Registered User sbilyeu75's Avatar
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    I did that and thought it was a pulled muscle. I ended up dislocating a rib in my back. I went to the chiropractor and he took care of it, but I was sore for quite a long time.
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