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  • Relief for low back pain???

    I have been battling a gimpy low back for several years. I have some herniated discs, degenerative disc disease and a case of scoliosis. It would kill me to stop lifting so I am working around the situation by drastically reducing my training poundage while drastically increasing my rep range. I am going to list some treatments I have used, provide some commentary and then seek input from you who are in the same boat (I am sure there are plenty of you out there). Hoping to find a gem out there.

    1. Deep fiber massage. This one works the best for me. I am talking about the guy who uses his elbow to dig down and nearly bring you to tears. This has consistently worked for me but it is not covered by insurance. Fortunately I found a local guy who charges on 30 bucks for a full hour and he works you like a piece of veal.

    2. Ice. Nothing fancy about this one. If I ice 30 minutes immediately upon waking I tend not to have any issues later.

    3. Chiro adjustments. They SEEM to work but usually no immediate relief. When I really throw my back out, I can't even be adjusted until the muscles become less inflamed.

    4. Stretching. This works but I am friggen lazy. The only time it REALLY works is when I am doing P.T. and someone is stretching me out. Left to my own devices, I tend to slack off and the abandon it altogether. I know this is one of the main reasons why I have problems. My hammys and hip flexors are tighter than violin strings.

    5. Physical therapy. I have some questions about this as the first thing they accuse me of is having a weak core. Keep in mind I have recently done 3x bodyweight DL and SQ so I am pretty sure my core is at least adequately strong. Then they have a college intern have me hold a friggen bosu ball and rotate from side to side. I am thinking that if I had a better physical therapist it would be more helpful but overall I have not had great results.

    6. Electro stim. Not sure this works.

    7. Acupuncture. Perhaps I had a bad practitioner but I did about 6 sessions and did not feel a thing. It seemed like voodoo science. She played some kind of hindu music, burned incense and lectured me about the dangers of weight training.


    Anyone have any success stories?
    Family Guy but also; Old School SoCal, punk rock loving, powerlifting, hardcore gym rat. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZtLQ73EutoY

  • #2
    Reverse hypers for reps. Since my gym doesn't have a reverse hypers machine. I do it with bands on the back extension machine. It's not easy but it def makes the lower back feel much better and stronger ...
    SAVE 5-10% @ TRUENUTRITION.com Use code: LG100

    - Success is the best revenge

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    • #3
      I won't go into my story as I figure you likely already know it from me detailing it here many times on IM.

      I will say, though, that #4 is what saved me. Yes, Chiro helped initially but aligning your spine only to be immediately pulled back out of alignment due to tight muscles on one side, is going to be a constant problem. Not busting your balls because stretching sucks but my back was fucked up and I wanted to die so I don't know how bad your pain was but mine reminds me every single time I even THINK about skipping stretching and I just plain do it.

      My last bad back injury will be 2 years in January. Since doing chiro and stretching I have not injured my back even once and even minor. Knock on wood but my back is stronger now than it has been in 10 years. I will be detailing not only my back problems but my stretching protocol in depth that I have used to keep my back healthy in the new DVD.

      Skip


      Facebook: Skip Hill
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      For Training Inquiries: [email protected]

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      • #4
        OK Skip look forward to that. I would like to see those stretches. And also when is the best time to do them.
        Family Guy but also; Old School SoCal, punk rock loving, powerlifting, hardcore gym rat. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZtLQ73EutoY

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        • #5
          I am a DC with twenty years experience and over thirty years of lifting. Here is my advice:

          Chiropractic - not all is equal. Most chiro's use nonspecific manipulation. That personally made me worse and increased my pain. You need a highly skilled chiropractor who uses specific chiropractic to precisely analyse your unique problem. Techniques like Thompson, Gonstead, Pierce Stillwagon IMO are excellent. Chiropractic is better for maintaining and preventing than it is for treating acute flair ups.

          Stretching and self care - Agree with Skip 100%! Using chiropractic to take care of your spine is just like going to the dentist regularly and never brushing or flossing your teeth. It isn't gonna work. Period. And vice versa, you still need the deep cleaning. It takes both. Personally I like the Pettibon Wobble Chair to strenghen, stretch and rehydrate the lumbar disks. When used daily the lumbars will rehydrate thus causing a reversal in degenerative disc disease.

          Muscle work - Overall I am not a hug fan unless there is scar tissue. However I do really like muscle activation techniques. When someone gets injured, the nervous system tries to adapt the best it can by turning certain muscles down. They just don't fire like they should. I find that turning these muscle back on is crucial!!!! Then you can start training these muscles specifically to bring them back up to full strength.

          Now let's talk injuries. There are three things that can happen when you get injured

          1) An injury happens and it heals completely and is never felt again.

          2) An injury happens and it is severe, either surgery is needed or the consequences are lifelong.

          3) An injury occurs and the persons body is able to adapt successfully and the pain goes away but the injury remains. This will be felt later in life as the body ages and looses it's ability to adapt. This explains why powerlifters, bodybuilders, football players are such a mess by 40. Pain in many cases shows up when the injury is 15 -25 years old.

          Swam - there is a chiro in your neck of the woods who is world class and he does not over treat by any means. He also does soft tissue work in addition to very precise and gentle adjustments.

          Here is the gem- take care of the spine with periodic adjustments, re balance the muscles, use daily self care for the spine, and lift in a way that is not damaging to the joints. This should allow you to lift pain free for many years to come.
          DShores
          Bantamweight Member
          Last edited by DShores; 12-20-2014, 12:27 PM. Reason: needed to add info

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          • #6
            Stretching was the answer to my back problems as well. Suffered from a sudden onset of severe sciatica about 6 months ago. It was very debilitating and I had very high levels of pain radiating from my lower back into my quads. It was not fun. Getting up from a seated position or out of bed was very challenging and slow going. At times the pain would get so bad that it would make me feel sick. For a short time I thought that my way of training was over.

            I was extremely tight in my hips, glutes, and especially the hamstrings. Stretching had been a complete after thought for years. There is also no shortage of squats, deadlifting, and strongman work in my training routine so you can see how this can lead to problems. I'm surprised this didn't happen sooner. I thought stretching was unimportant and I was too lazy to incorporate it into my training.

            I began stretching daily and it made all the difference in the world. It took a little bit of time and dedication but I have since become pretty damn flexible and have been pain free for the last 2 months. It paid off and was worth the extra effort. I have recently reduced my stretching routine to 3 days a week (mainly after training) and I am as flexible as ever. I also believe that the increased flexibility has had a positive impact on my strength training as well. I should also mention that I have not altered my training methods once I was able to get back into the swing of things.

            I know we don't have similar back problems but it may be worth your time and energy to begin stretching on a regular basis. Just my two cents. Good luck

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            • #7
              I certainly don't have your degree of issues, but I do have a degenerated L5/S1 disc due to years of bad form, and because of what I'm about to say.

              The best way to treat back pain I've encountered is to turn all your abdominal muscles into iron. That means rectus abdominus, transverse abdominus, obliques, intercostals, everything. The stronger your gut muscles are, the better they can support your lame-o back.
              Ph.D., Theoretical Physics '16
              kind of a douche

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              • #8
                This is all very good feedback. Great thread.

                I stretch hard after training but light before legs.

                Skip


                Facebook: Skip Hill
                Instagram: @intensemuscle
                YouTube: TEAMSKIP
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                For Training Inquiries: [email protected]

                Use discount code "SKIP" and get your TEAM SKIP protein here: www.TrueNutrition.com/TEAMSKIPblend

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                • #9
                  Skip, what specific stretches are you doing? Do you include the psoas, piriformis and quadratus lumborum?

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by DShores View Post
                    Skip, what specific stretches are you doing? Do you include the psoas, piriformis and quadratus lumborum?
                    It would take too long to list them all here but I will in the DVD.

                    I do cover all of those, yes.

                    I do 7 different stretches and I use either a baseball or rugby ball to work my psoas in addition to a stretch for it.

                    Skip


                    Facebook: Skip Hill
                    Instagram: @intensemuscle
                    YouTube: TEAMSKIP
                    TikTok: @intensemuscle


                    For Training Inquiries: [email protected]

                    Use discount code "SKIP" and get your TEAM SKIP protein here: www.TrueNutrition.com/TEAMSKIPblend

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                    • #11
                      DShores I am #3 on your list. I still have the degenerative disc disease and herniated discs but honestly MOST of the time I have ZERO pain. I feel great right now and feel as if I could go squat and deadlift like the old days. But I tend to reinjure myself doing routine tasks like picking up the newspaper EARLY IN THE MORNING HOURS. When I do flare up, it is HELL. I am in bed for a couple days and basically crippled. It used to go out every couple years and now it is happening on a far more frequent basis. Some guys have chronic pain, but I don't. I have an ON switch and an OFF switch. When the pain switch is ON I am crippled. When it is OFF I feel pretty darn good. That is why previously posted about my dedication to never do any risky moves again. Light weights, safe movements and pumping the muscles. No more crushing poundages. I can't risk being in a wheelchair at 50 just because I wanted to add an inch on my thighs. If I continued grinding out squats, deads, rack pulls, bent rows, hang cleans, push press etc. I am CERTAIN I would lose the ability to walk upright for life.
                      Family Guy but also; Old School SoCal, punk rock loving, powerlifting, hardcore gym rat. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZtLQ73EutoY

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                      • #12
                        @sammich, what did you do to strengthen core?

                        i had a sore back from deadlifts and couldn't sit or stand or pee properly. a gay guy at a music concert decided to give me a massage. best feeling ever 10/10.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by greensoup View Post
                          @sammich, what did you do to strengthen core?

                          i had a sore back from deadlifts and couldn't sit or stand or pee properly. a gay guy at a music concert decided to give me a massage. best feeling ever 10/10.
                          Planks, side-to-side planks, spread-eagle sit-ups, crunches, and using belts as little as possible on warm-up sets for squats and DLs while focusing on keeping core extremely tight.

                          I never did much for obliques since those never seemed to be an issue for me.
                          Ph.D., Theoretical Physics '16
                          kind of a douche

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by LG1 View Post
                            Reverse hypers for reps. Since my gym doesn't have a reverse hypers machine. I do it with bands on the back extension machine. It's not easy but it def makes the lower back feel much better and stronger ...

                            Also, seated GMs in the max rack have worked great for me.
                            SAVE 5-10% @ TRUENUTRITION.com Use code: LG100

                            - Success is the best revenge

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by greensoup View Post
                              @sammich, what did you do to strengthen core?

                              i had a sore back from deadlifts and couldn't sit or stand or pee properly. a gay guy at a music concert decided to give me a massage. best feeling ever 10/10.
                              Apparently, no one wants to go anywhere near this one. lol

                              Skip


                              Facebook: Skip Hill
                              Instagram: @intensemuscle
                              YouTube: TEAMSKIP
                              TikTok: @intensemuscle


                              For Training Inquiries: [email protected]

                              Use discount code "SKIP" and get your TEAM SKIP protein here: www.TrueNutrition.com/TEAMSKIPblend

                              Comment

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