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Drallen2662 06-15-2008 07:46 PM

Need Help On Squat
Iím currently using the Rippetoes program. Saturday I was in the gym had completed my bench press and moved onto squats. Iíve been working with 205lb for the past two weeks to work on form, since this is the first time Iíve ever done them on a rack. I decided it was time to start adding the weight so, I bumped it up to 215lb. After completing the first two reps I went down for the last one on the first set. As I started to push up my lower back started to spasm. I instantly stopped and dropped the weight down to 185lb. I could feel a pulling in my lower back so I decided to stop the squats and see if dead lifts felt the same. I completed the warm up and few sets with no pain or discomfort but when I was resting in-between sets I could feel my back throbbing. I figured I shouldnít push it so I ended the workout for the day.

I go, as you guys say, ass to grass when doing squats and I know this helps give you more of a total body workout so, Iím not sure if my back isnít strong enough to handle the weight or if its something else. I know I was having trouble in the beginning with keeping my back arched through the whole movement so I might have humped my back without knowing it.

Its not to bad today, just a little sore at times. Iím set to go back Monday and Iím going to see how the warm up feels. Probably only going to work with 185lb, if that much. I just want to make sure I donít seriously injure something.

Any suggestions or advice?:sos:

iron_worker 06-15-2008 09:10 PM

Well if you're just starting out then 200+ lbs is probably too much. I started at 135lbs for the 3x5 reccomended by Ripp. Have you done squats before?


Ross86 06-15-2008 09:16 PM

That's cool that you stopped when it started to get bad. If you can find someone that's knowledgeable (like a good trainer), have that person watch you and critique your form. I know what I'm supposed to be doing, but whenever I lift heavier I have no idea whether my form is exactly spot on or not.

Like IW said, if you were working on form and having those issues, then go with even less weight. Try 135. For me, I use 185 or 225 for form work because if I use less weight then that then it feels almost like I'm doing BW squats. The point is, use a weight that is comfortable and manageable.

Drallen2662 06-15-2008 11:14 PM

I'm just starting out doing squats on the rack, before I did squats on a sled or machine. When I started doing deadlifts for the first time in May I could tell that my legs could handle the weight but my back couldn't. I started doing dead lifts with 150lb and now doing 285lb, so my back has definitely gotten stronger. The squats could be working my back in a different way so I might have to continue to build that first. I'm going to take your advice and try to get a weight between 135-185lb, something comfortable and something that is going to make me work. Work strictly on form and then maybe after this week I can start to add some pounds.

Not sure if there is anyone I can ask to critique my form. I try to watch other people in-between sets, try to see what they do good and bad so I can improve my form. Every person I see doing squats load the bar up with 300+lb and go crazy. They don't even go down to parallel and they explode up so fast that the bar almost lifts off their shoulders. It’s pretty bad that a newbie like me can easily see their bad form.

If you are going A2G is it typical that the first 2-3" when pushing back up are extremely difficult? This is where I feel it in my back the most.

Mistwraith 06-16-2008 12:07 AM

it is the first 2-3" that is the hardest part of a squat for me as well, and where i usually fail my lifts when i get fatigued enough.

ChinPieceDave667 06-16-2008 05:48 AM

make sure you are doing plenty of ab and oblique work. having a weak core will hinder your squats.

cavman 06-17-2008 04:29 AM

I too am just starting ripptoe's. 3rd week. It's amazing to me how just doing those 3 major exercises plus sit-ups and maybe dips or pull-ups each workout does'nt feel like "JUST" at all. My outer thighs, hips, and glutes. are sore from doing squats the correct way. Don't think it would have anything to so with back pain, but does'nt SS specify squats as the first exercise every workout.

cavman 06-17-2008 05:04 AM

That's if your doing SS. Squat/Bench/Deadlift Squat/Press/Powerclean (Row). I don't know if Ripptoe has programs with different exercise orders.

BG5150 06-17-2008 06:09 AM

Check out Sensei's SquatRX stuff.

The blog is

Search for the videos on youtube; I can't link them because I'm at work. They are very informative.

_Wolf_ 06-17-2008 08:21 AM


Originally Posted by BG5150 (Post 59054)
Check out Sensei's SquatRX stuff.

The blog is

Search for the videos on youtube; I can't link them because I'm at work. They are very informative.

not everything by boris makes sense and is good for you though. only some of it. just keep this in mind.

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