Podcast Archive

Lower Back Fixes

On episode 25 of the Doc and Jock Podcast Dr. Danny and Coach Joe talk about the lower back.  We all have one and if you train long enough the chances are that you will most likely tweak it.  Before Danny and Joe talk about their own injuries the guys catch up on Joe’s Experience at the USAW National Championships.  Joe went 4/6 posting a 266 total, made a connection with the gang at Third Pull Apparel, was coached by legendarily American Weighlifting Coach Don McCauley, and had a front row seat to watch American Records fall at the hands of CJ Cummings and Jared Fleming.


The guys quickly shift gears into the topic of the day, the lower back.  Danny and Joe first relive their own experiences injuring the region.  After which Danny lays out some important characteristics you should take note of to recognize an injury that may require emergency care.  1) If you lose bowl and bladder control get to the hospital as soon as possible 2) if you feel numbness and tingling on the inside of your leg at or around the groin or abductor area you may be experiencing some cord compression and should also get to the hospital ASAP and lastly 3) if some numbness and tingling is running below your hip you may also want to go and see a provider.


Now, if you have general lower back pain and the resources to do so, Danny and Joe recommend that you get some hands on work ASAP from a professional.  The sooner you can alleviate spasms, reduce pain and return to full range of motion the better.  If you can’t get to a provider check out some work from Kelly Starrett, work your QL, psoas and hip flexor.  In the link provided with Kelly Starrett, he and Jenny Labaw go over some quick fixes so you can keep training. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JoAj6frTsSs


After you reset your spine, hips and pelvis it’s very important to keep moving.  The first few days after your injury you need to focus on repetitive movements that are pain free.  Once you start to feel frisky again and can operate pain free with a full range of motion it’s important to get back to a barbell as quickly as possible.  Danny and Joe aren’t recommending you max your dead and go right back to full snatches.  Danny recommends some limited range of motion exercises like box squats or rack pulls.  The point is that exposure to gross motor patterns that fire large muscle groups will also speed up the healing process.  The major point here is that you need to start rebuilding that functional skill of picking stuff up and stay out of a sitting position.

If you feel as though your progress has plateaued or you just haven’t been able to shake the pain, gain range, or past performance back in about 2 weeks or so you need to see a provider.  If not now when?  Why wait a year.  The likely hood of you doing more harm than good is relatively high at this point.

Once you have regained ROM, have been cleared by a provider, and in general can perform full range movements like squatting and pulling you can begin to strengthen the region.  In the beginning focus on shape control in gymnastics and barbell movements.  In gymnastics work a hollow to arch, ring supports, some twisting out of the hollow to identify some possible asymmetries, and lastly some loaded planking.  Once you are ready for the barbell Danny and Joe recommend some deadlifts and squats with pauses, good mornings, properly performed rounded back deadlifts https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ec-e1xFpQY, basic GHD work, and lastly if you have access to a reverse hyper get on it for some decompression.  Be sure to also avoid over extension gang, neutral means neutral in regards to proper spinal positioning.

The guys close out with a talk about back surgery.  Neither Danny or Joe would ever recommend discounting the advice of a physician but be sure to be an informed consumer.  Once you go down the surgery route it is hard to come back.  Be sure that any imaging that is associated with a surgery recommendation is also associated with symptoms.  You should also keep in mind that 25% of back surgery needs to be redone, the rehab is exhaustive, and surgeries are big business.


The following are links to Coaches, Establishments, and great folks mentioned in this Podcast – be sure to tell them Doc and Jock sent you!

Kelly Starrett of Mobility Wod – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JoAj6frTsSs Lower back Quick Fixes

Stephen Powell of KORE Weightlifting – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ec-e1xFpQY Chinese or Rounded Back Deadlift instruction

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Dr. Danny also always has something cooking and quality info on the Athlete Potential

facebook page https://www.facebook.com/athletespotential?fref=ts

webpage http://www.athletespotential.com/

and Danny’s personal IG (@dannyMattaPT) and Twitter (@AthPotential) acconts

Joe’s Barbell is also up and running on facebook  https://www.facebook.com/joesbarbell?fref=ts ,

And you can reach Coach Joe on IG (@joesbarbell) and Twitter (@JoeShu2326) for all your Weightlifting needs.


Thanks for listening and remember, If you have a BODY you’re an ATHLETE

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