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TOPIC: Back pain when squatting

Back pain when squatting 4 years 2 months ago #29673

  • Robocos
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Is it normal to experience lower back pain during squatting?

The limiting factor when increasing weight is not the exhaustion of my quads but my lower back muscles screaming out. I guess it's probably poor form due to the weight but I'm very aware of mainatining good form and progressing slowly.

It's limiting my progress as I'm fearful of getting an injury so I tend to back off as it occurs.

I have over exerted my lower back previously but nothing that rest didn't cure so I don't belive that my back is intrinsicly weak. I am at the 'heavy" end of my current cycle so that's another possible factor.

Anyone else experience this.
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RE:Back pain when squatting 4 years 2 months ago #29676

  • stev394
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Robocos wrote:
Is it normal to experience lower back pain during squatting?

The limiting factor when increasing weight is not the exhaustion of my quads but my lower back muscles screaming out. I guess it's probably poor form due to the weight but I'm very aware of mainatining good form and progressing slowly.

It's limiting my progress as I'm fearful of getting an injury so I tend to back off as it occurs.

I have over exerted my lower back previously but nothing that rest didn't cure so I don't belive that my back is intrinsicly weak. I am at the 'heavy" end of my current cycle so that's another possible factor.

Anyone else experience this.

It may be fatigue...Remember the human body is built all f***** up. The weakest part of our bodies support everything we do.
What are you doing for your core? That is Strengthing your abdominals will certainly help in this exercise. Also try moving your stance. Slightly shift your feet in or out may offer a little better support. Also you could try adjusting where you place the bar on your shoulders. Might think about moving it slightly down your shoulders a bit therefore shifting the weight more toward natural center body........
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RE:Back pain when squatting 4 years 2 months ago #29678

  • SquatMax
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good evening,


this is a blatant cut and paste from a post I put on another thread...

good mornings... good mornings... good mornings... stiff leg deadlift... lat pulldowns... glute/ham raises... in spite of the name, helpful with the lower back... bent over rows... really upper back and shoulders, but as the core has to stabilize, it works as a warmup also...

I've gotten to the point that good mornings happen before I squat... other assistance work is separate day, but good mornings are a GREAT warmup for Me...

tough to talk about form... kinda gotta see it... however...

feet in a football stance, slightly more than shoulder width, slightly toed out... knees in direct line with the feet, never going out past the toes... big chest, hips tucked, head in a 'natural' position, with eyes looking straight ahead but slightly upwards, with a conscious effort to keep it there... big breath... BREATHE as you squat... arms as tight to the shoulders on the bar as you can get... bar on the shoulder blades, NOT on the neck...

sit back as you go down... like you're looking for a chair without turning around... keep the chest up and the eyes looking slightly up... when you hit the bottom, don't bounce, and don't 'roll' the back... drive straight up with the hips to an upright stance without bouncing the bar at all... we've started driving the elbows FORWARD to help with back position... wait two seconds to stabilize, and do it again...

if you want to video your squats, I'll try to clarify all of that based on what I see...

have a great night,
Stats:

Chest: 55.5 Squat: 475
Waist: 43.5 Bench: 455
Biceps: 19.25 Dead : 495
Quads: 29.5
Weight: 318 down to 274
"Let men see, let them know, a real man, who lives as he was meant to live... "

-- Marcus Aurelius

""The sense of superiority in bodily strength is borne out by the long history of mankind paying homage in folklore, song and poetry to strong men"
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RE:Back pain when squatting 4 years 2 months ago #29680

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Thanks for the replies.

Stev394 - I don't do any specific core training as I believe, rightly or wrongly, that squatting and deadlifting give me the core strength I need.

SquatMax - Thanks for the guide. I'm certainly concious of all those things and do my best to concentrate on form, but I suspect that my form does deteriorate as the weight increases.

So, in summary, if my back is hurting am I doing something wrong?
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RE:Back pain when squatting 4 years 2 months ago #29682

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good evening,

I'm not a doctor...and I'm highly prejudiced in favor of the squat...

absolutely, form suffers as weight increases. hence, your back is going to hurt, especially if you're really pushing your weight lifted... how MUCH weight you're squatting might be an issue... when I have an athlete whose back seriously begins to hurt when squatting, I drop him to 70% of his former max and use that as his max for several weeks... as long as he keeps squatting, the strength is not going to go away... with that lightened weight... for example... a 300 pound squatter would use 210 as his MAX weight while we sort out the problem... so... with that lightened weight, we concentrate on form and technique and breathing and all of that stuff... and WORK at the assistance exercises at the same time... cuz if the back is truly sore as opposed to damaged, assistance work will find the weak link culprit and help us fix it...

all of that said... don't be afraid to take a day off and just see if that helps/fixes the problem... sometimes the body just flat needs extra rest, again... especially if you're really pushing the envelope with the amount you're lifting...

hope that helps...

have a great night,
Stats:

Chest: 55.5 Squat: 475
Waist: 43.5 Bench: 455
Biceps: 19.25 Dead : 495
Quads: 29.5
Weight: 318 down to 274
"Let men see, let them know, a real man, who lives as he was meant to live... "

-- Marcus Aurelius

""The sense of superiority in bodily strength is borne out by the long history of mankind paying homage in folklore, song and poetry to strong men"
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RE:Back pain when squatting 4 years 2 months ago #29700

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SquatMax wrote:
good evening,

I'm not a doctor...and I'm highly prejudiced in favor of the squat...

absolutely, form suffers as weight increases. hence, your back is going to hurt, especially if you're really pushing your weight lifted... how MUCH weight you're squatting might be an issue... when I have an athlete whose back seriously begins to hurt when squatting, I drop him to 70% of his former max and use that as his max for several weeks... as long as he keeps squatting, the strength is not going to go away... with that lightened weight... for example... a 300 pound squatter would use 210 as his MAX weight while we sort out the problem... so... with that lightened weight, we concentrate on form and technique and breathing and all of that stuff... and WORK at the assistance exercises at the same time... cuz if the back is truly sore as opposed to damaged, assistance work will find the weak link culprit and help us fix it...

all of that said... don't be afraid to take a day off and just see if that helps/fixes the problem... sometimes the body just flat needs extra rest, again... especially if you're really pushing the envelope with the amount you're lifting...

hope that helps...

have a great night,

Having read many of your posts I share your 'feelings' towards the squat insomuch as I detest it with a passion but simply refuse to stop doing it so I'm determined to figure the problem.

I will do as you suggest and back off a little with the weight but I suspect the voulme (34 working reps performed between 70 and 85% of 1RM) coupled with deadlifting and stiff legged deadlifting is also contributing to the whole issue. Ironically I don't feel my back fatiguing the same way when I'm deadlifting.

Anyway thanks again for your valued input.
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RE:Back pain when squatting 4 years 2 months ago #29765

  • salatheel
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I have been lifting for about 30years now. I am 5'11" and medium framed. Until I started to seriously get into squatting my legs sucked and I could not get serious weight on me. I was doing a pretty varied routine. Leg extensions,leg presses,leg curls ect... But my thighs never got past 23" and my bodyweight never past 200. I started to squat with a powerlifeter friend. I switched my routine to 10-12 sets of squats and nothing else. My legs went up to 27-1/2" and my bodyweight to 238. Granted, I was not ripped but I had added a ton of muscle. I would never have gotten there without the squats. Ok, now the bad news. After I had gotten up to 495lb squats for 10 reps I ruptured 2 disks and have never been the same since. So the moral of the story is squats are the ultimate single leg and overall bodybuilding exersize there is. However, please be careful!!! Listen to you body and take it slow. Warm up every time. Good luck.
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RE:Back pain when squatting 4 years 2 months ago #29799

  • Kevsworld
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Not sure if this is the "solution" you are looking for, but have you thought about front squat? I've noticed it seems to be easier on my back, trains the core, and is a nice change of pace when I feel like my back has been taking a pounding from heavy squats.
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RE:Back pain when squatting 4 years 2 months ago #29810

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Kevsworld wrote:
Not sure if this is the "solution" you are looking for, but have you thought about front squat? I've noticed it seems to be easier on my back, trains the core, and is a nice change of pace when I feel like my back has been taking a pounding from heavy squats.

A good suggestion thanks.

I have tried the front squat but become frustrated as I cannot get it quite right. Maybe I should persevere with it.
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RE:Back pain when squatting 3 years 8 months ago #32005

When you can go for sleeping then with a pillow between the knees while lying on one side may increase comfort. Some doctors recommend lying on your back with a pillow under your knees.Paracetamol is usually recommended to treat acute lower back pain. If paracetamol proves ineffective, a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug such as ibuprofen may be used instead.
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