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Lifting weights with bad back

AndineMumAndineMum Member Posts: 7 Member Member Posts: 7 Member
How do I start with weights with a bad/ weak back?
I can't get to a gym but am I being stupid for starting to try alone at home? I've been given some free bog standard hand weights and a long bar with bigger weights
edited April 4

Replies

  • yirarayirara Member, Premium Posts: 6,110 Member Member, Premium Posts: 6,110 Member
    Do you just have weak muscles or an actual medical condition? If the latter then it might be a good idea to go to a physiotherapist that has a sports room. They might be able to show you how to exercise without causing further damage.
  • sijomialsijomial Member, Premium Posts: 18,250 Member Member, Premium Posts: 18,250 Member
    No it's not at all stupid to start at home, letting muscles atrophy is only likely to make your back worse.
    Weights are also only just one way to exercise and strengthen your back.

    But first you need to know what is wrong with your back.
    "Bad back" can mean many different structural problems or injuries.

    What do you mean by "weak back" and what do you think caused it?
  • serapelserapel Member Posts: 487 Member Member Posts: 487 Member
    Glute bridges to start and then move into hip thrusts. I had a weak lumbar region and weak glutes and I was continuously spraining my back.

    I began hip thrusting 50 lbs 4 years ago and now my barbell hip thrust is 5 pause reps at 300 lbs.

    My back is super strong now and no more flat weak butt 😊

    Honestly for me, it’s the only thing that worked to strengthen my back, core, glutes and hams (i.e., posterior chain).
  • Speakeasy76Speakeasy76 Member Posts: 456 Member Member Posts: 456 Member
    sijomial wrote: »
    No it's not at all stupid to start at home, letting muscles atrophy is only likely to make your back worse.
    Weights are also only just one way to exercise and strengthen your back.

    But first you need to know what is wrong with your back.
    "Bad back" can mean many different structural problems or injuries.

    What do you mean by "weak back" and what do you think caused it?

    Yep! As someone who has had a "weak back," it's often not your back that's weak, but the muscles around it. Your back may be compensating for the weak muscles around it(glutes, transverse abs, core/postural muscles).
  • Theoldguy1Theoldguy1 Member Posts: 1,720 Member Member Posts: 1,720 Member
  • robertw486robertw486 Member, Greeter, Premium Posts: 2,178 Member Member, Greeter, Premium Posts: 2,178 Member
    My advice would to be cautious if you have real back issues. Talk to your doctor or PT and go from there. If they give you the OK, then go for it. Or do like I did and ignore some of it, but remember that they are leading you one direction for a reason.

    I have essentially no disc left at my L3-S1. I was told years ago I would probably not walk unaided without surgery. Thankfully I had a PT that convinced me that was garbage, and convinced me to do the extra work on my core and glutes to protect the injury.

    For that reason I do more core stuff than back, and have to take into consideration the back injury. I can lift to some extent, but should avoid max effort squats, or any other lift that places the majority of the load on my back. I can do volume, but have to be wary of heavy lifts or anything that deals with certain angles, weighted or not.
  • AndineMumAndineMum Member Posts: 7 Member Member Posts: 7 Member
    yirara wrote: »
    Do you just have weak muscles or an actual medical condition? If the latter then it might be a good idea to go to a physiotherapist that has a sports room. They might be able to show you how to exercise without causing further damage.

    I'm hypermobile but mostly problems are due to being very unfit I think
  • AndineMumAndineMum Member Posts: 7 Member Member Posts: 7 Member
    sijomial wrote: »
    No it's not at all stupid to start at home, letting muscles atrophy is only likely to make your back worse.
    Weights are also only just one way to exercise and strengthen your back.

    But first you need to know what is wrong with your back.
    "Bad back" can mean many different structural problems or injuries.

    What do you mean by "weak back" and what do you think caused it?

    I'm hypermobile and back can spasm like a cramp type feeling. physiotherapy advised that strengthening my core will help. I think a lot of it is due to being very unfit and bad posture tbh. I have lost just over 4 stone so far but have not done much fitness wise for over a decade.
  • AndineMumAndineMum Member Posts: 7 Member Member Posts: 7 Member
    serapel wrote: »
    Glute bridges to start and then move into hip thrusts. I had a weak lumbar region and weak glutes and I was continuously spraining my back.

    I began hip thrusting 50 lbs 4 years ago and now my barbell hip thrust is 5 pause reps at 300 lbs.

    My back is super strong now and no more flat weak butt 😊

    Honestly for me, it’s the only thing that worked to strengthen my back, core, glutes and hams (i.e., posterior chain).

    Thank you will look all that up! I have been told strengthening my core will help as well :)
  • AndineMumAndineMum Member Posts: 7 Member Member Posts: 7 Member
    sijomial wrote: »
    No it's not at all stupid to start at home, letting muscles atrophy is only likely to make your back worse.
    Weights are also only just one way to exercise and strengthen your back.

    But first you need to know what is wrong with your back.
    "Bad back" can mean many different structural problems or injuries.

    What do you mean by "weak back" and what do you think caused it?

    Yep! As someone who has had a "weak back," it's often not your back that's weak, but the muscles around it. Your back may be compensating for the weak muscles around it(glutes, transverse abs, core/postural muscles).

    Thank you!
  • AndineMumAndineMum Member Posts: 7 Member Member Posts: 7 Member
    robertw486 wrote: »
    My advice would to be cautious if you have real back issues. Talk to your doctor or PT and go from there. If they give you the OK, then go for it. Or do like I did and ignore some of it, but remember that they are leading you one direction for a reason.

    I have essentially no disc left at my L3-S1. I was told years ago I would probably not walk unaided without surgery. Thankfully I had a PT that convinced me that was garbage, and convinced me to do the extra work on my core and glutes to protect the injury.

    For that reason I do more core stuff than back, and have to take into consideration the back injury. I can lift to some extent, but should avoid max effort squats, or any other lift that places the majority of the load on my back. I can do volume, but have to be wary of heavy lifts or anything that deals with certain angles, weighted or not.

    Thank you :) That's incredible! Well done for doing that :) I bet you're so glad you kept going!
    I have been considering going to a PT once for help. Problem is I'm a carer and getting cover atm is impossible and looks like will be for some time.
  • AndineMumAndineMum Member Posts: 7 Member Member Posts: 7 Member
    Theoldguy1 wrote: »

    Thank you will have a read :)
  • sijomialsijomial Member, Premium Posts: 18,250 Member Member, Premium Posts: 18,250 Member
    AndineMum wrote: »
    Theoldguy1 wrote: »

    Thank you will have a read :)

    Bears crawls were part of the rehab exercises a physiotherapist had me doing recovering from my latest disc prolapse to help re-establish normal movement patterns. Not that crawling around is perhaps considered normal movement for an old fart!

    Latest but certainly not greatest prolapse, I discovered that neither gas and air or morphine really do much for me for pain relief.

    Posture work, core and back strengthening can be a virtuous circle.
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