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  1. #1
    GO HEAVY OR GO HOME!!! MIKES3's Avatar
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    Messed up my lower back!!

    I'm never touching dead lifts again. I got to where I wanted to be. Between the deadlifts and my awkward sleeping positions my lower back finally had enough. I push to hard and get sloppy form eventually

    Once I heal and get better I'll start off slow and light.

    I'm going to be intimidated of squats.

    Any tip or tricks?
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    What's your goals with the deadlift? Is it just to deadlift ___ lbs or is it to work you back? If it's the latter, you might want to permanently stop using this exercise and incorporate other, more back-friendly type exercises. For me, pull-ups are my goto back exercise but I've done landmine rows (both one hand and two hands) too.
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    Improve your form if you want to keep doing them. Post a form video if you'd like feedback.

    As you heal, you can also start out with trap bar DLs if you want to take it easier on your back at first.
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    Moderator SuffolkPunch's Avatar
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    I know that feeling.

    What actually happened? Did you get a spasm? Did you get pain and stiffness immediately or a few hours later?

    I have tweaked myself numerous times on deadlifts - it comes down to not knowing when a rep has 'failed' because you can still complete it with lumbar rounding (which is a bad idea). I have greatly improved my back with some additional isolation exercises. Obviously this may not work for you because your issue might be different. I benefitted from relearning hip position during squats (avoid overextending) and doing hamstring and upper glute isolations (hip abduction) - with smooth tempo and the fullest possible ROM possible.
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    Much later, when you're better... would hex bar DLs be any use in your program? Some people with previous back issues swear by them. YMMV.
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    Registered User adamgentile's Avatar
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    Post a video. I have been there a few times the risk/reward sometimes isn't worth it. You don't need to deadlift to build a back, but deadlifts are fun to do. I never go heavy anymore, medium weight for reps. I also find Romanian deadlift much more forgiving on the lower back.
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    GO HEAVY OR GO HOME!!! MIKES3's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by SuffolkPunch View Post
    I know that feeling.

    What actually happened? Did you get a spasm? Did you get pain and stiffness immediately or a few hours later?

    I have tweaked myself numerous times on deadlifts - it comes down to not knowing when a rep has 'failed' because you can still complete it with lumbar rounding (which is a bad idea). I have greatly improved my back with some additional isolation exercises. Obviously this may not work for you because your issue might be different. I benefitted from relearning hip position during squats (avoid overextending) and doing hamstring and upper glute isolations (hip abduction) - with smooth tempo and the fullest possible ROM possible.
    You actually nailed it. I couldn't of said better myself. It took hours to realize I messed it up. I decided to skip deadlifts last week and went to Seated rows. My last set (of course I went heavy on a set 6-8 and then I felt it) I knew it right there. Drop the weights and walk away quietly lol. It was a slight pinch in my lower middle back area. I decided to walk on the treadmill to feel it out. It felt fine while I was walking. then I did about 3.5 miles. I felt fine. Once I got home and started resting is when I started feeling discomfort. Then Monday morning at 3am I woke up with severe pain. At 7am I couldn't take the pain and went to the doctor. I hate doing that, but it was a must. The pain spread to my lower right side of my back. Like I was being stabbed. I almost thought something was wrong with my kidneys. That's what made me go to tthe doctor.

    It's still sore, but its definitely getting better. I'll do lifting when my body feels its ready. At least a couple of weeks

    I think now I'm going with light weights high reps.

    I did 350lbs on deadlifts x 2 a couple of weeks ago @ 175lbs. I was dam proud, but no more. I'm almost 40 years old. Time to go a little easier on my body
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  8. #8
    Moderator SuffolkPunch's Avatar
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    Hopefully it's not as bad as it seems. The muscles have all gone into 'lockdown' to protect the area and it's very uncomfortable. It would be worse if it was very painful at the time it happened - that would have been a muscle strain or worse.

    It will release on its own in a few days with any luck - keep moving and keep doing light activities that don't produce any shooting pains... GL
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  9. #9
    In it for the gainz RestoringTally's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by MIKES3 View Post
    You actually nailed it. I couldn't of said better myself. It took hours to realize I messed it up. I decided to skip deadlifts last week and went to Seated rows. My last set (of course I went heavy on a set 6-8 and then I felt it) I knew it right there. Drop the weights and walk away quietly lol. It was a slight pinch in my lower middle back area. I decided to walk on the treadmill to feel it out. It felt fine while I was walking. then I did about 3.5 miles. I felt fine. Once I got home and started resting is when I started feeling discomfort. Then Monday morning at 3am I woke up with severe pain. At 7am I couldn't take the pain and went to the doctor. I hate doing that, but it was a must. The pain spread to my lower right side of my back. Like I was being stabbed. I almost thought something was wrong with my kidneys. That's what made me go to tthe doctor.

    It's still sore, but its definitely getting better. I'll do lifting when my body feels its ready. At least a couple of weeks

    I think now I'm going with light weights high reps.

    I did 350lbs on deadlifts x 2 a couple of weeks ago @ 175lbs. I was dam proud, but no more. I'm almost 40 years old. Time to go a little easier on my body
    I tweaked my back 25 years ago doing deadlifts. After that, about once a year my back would go out, usually from moving furniture. Sometimes it was so bad i could not walk upright.

    A co-worker gave me the book, How to Treat Your Back, by Dr. Robin McKenzie. The book discusses the cause of much back pain. And it contains some simple exercises that work. I have not had back pain in more than 10 years. I do the exercises occasionally, and whenever I feel that my back is not right, but before it starts hurting.

    There are McKenzie clinics around the US that offer therapy to alleviate the back pain.

    The book is inexpensive and available at Amazon. (no affiliation - just a satisfied reader).
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    GO HEAVY OR GO HOME!!! MIKES3's Avatar
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    Its finally starting to feel comfortable as of today. I can still feel it, but nothing major any more. I can finally lift my leg into my car with out the use of my hand lol. I'll give it another week before I use weights.
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  11. #11
    Moderator SuffolkPunch's Avatar
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    Putting socks on was always the biggest challenge for me when this happened...
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    Originally Posted by SuffolkPunch View Post
    Putting socks on was always the biggest challenge for me when this happened...
    That was me last week 😂

    "babe. Help... Sock me please.. I can't bend over"

    Dehydrated
    Hungover
    Sleep crap
    Was stiff as hell
    Didn't warm up
    Dead lifted
    Pulled my back picking up a 1.25kg wheel
    🤣
    Fine now.

    **** just happens. It's part of life. People worry to much and get caught up in such quackery, nocebo and bs from people..
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    Originally Posted by SuffolkPunch View Post
    Putting socks on was always the biggest challenge for me when this happened...
    LOL ... this exactly

    I tweaked my hip, lower back above my right glute....somewhere in there.... warming up RDLs on Saturday. Could not lift up my right leg till yesterday.

    Couldnt even get underwear on sunday FFS, was a challenge to get off the toilet as well.

    Still sore today but moving forward.

    Hasn't stopped me from eating tho.

    WTF is wrong with us now
    Please record my time/reps if I pass out
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    You might also want to seek the advise of a chiropractor or physical therapist that works with athletes.
    It sounds as if you have a pre existing condition that keeps happening.
    The other things as recommended is review your technique and possibly get a qualified coach to examine it.
    Lots of subtle adjustments can help in many cases.
    Also a a good protocol to follow depending on what your goal is.
    Good luck.
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    When you heal deadlifts and squats are over

    Replace with RDL and leg press
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    Originally Posted by OldFartTom View Post
    Much later, when you're better... would hex bar DLs be any use in your program? Some people with previous back issues swear by them. YMMV.
    Only way I’ll do a DL is with a trap bar. Never had back issues, but I want to keep it that way and I’ve seen too many people/read too many stories like OP’s to keep rolling the dice. And I don’t feel like I’m missing anything by skipping the barbell in favor of the trap bar.
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    DEFINITELY follow RestoringTally's advice and pick up the Mckenzie book. It's like an antidote for everyone who sits in a chair for 8 hours a day.

    Most people that I assess can't hip hinge down to the level of a deadlift bar to pull it off the ground. The compensation is that these people flex the lumbar spine to make up the difference. Assuming you have the same issue you can:
    A. Do RDL's and keep the core tight
    B. Hex Bar Deadlift (maybe)
    C. Straight bar deadlift off of a box or plates to lift the bar 4-6 inches.

    Deadlifts should STRENGTHEN the back, they are not kryptonite when performed correctly.
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    dont skip the warmup
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    GO HEAVY OR GO HOME!!! MIKES3's Avatar
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    I'm back at the gym now. I'm doing light weights high reps. It felt really good to take that 2 week break. I'm going to start taking 5-7 day breaks more often. I'm a lot stronger now. I can feel it and notice it while driving the weights.

    I did squats on Saturday. Started at 95 lbs to see how it felt. Gradually worked my way up to 185lbs 2x10. I ordered a belt and I'm looking forward to using it.

    I have not done any type of dead lifts yet. I'm waiting a bit on those. I'm substituting for now

    Feels good!!
    Last edited by MIKES3; 03-26-2021 at 01:14 PM.
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