why don't back disks just collapse?

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    why don't back disks just collapse?


    I got a disk injury a few months ago while doing deadlifts and sometimes feel like I was instantly transformed into an old man who will have a stiff back for the rest of his life. I have faith that things will improve. But it seems like my back just always bothers me a little in a hard to describe way. I went from feeling as good as I ever did in my youth (i.e. basically feeling invincible), to suddenly always being aware that I cannot move around as freely anymore. Suddenly I'm conscious of how everything we do relies on the integrity of these little disks in our backs...

    I see olympic lifters, strongmen, etc lifting ungodly amount of weight. Why don't people's spines just break? Or at least the little disks not just collapse? I understand that muscles stabilize them and all that. But ultimately all the weight is supported by those little disks in the spine. How do those superhuman strength guys do it?

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    One of the basic principles of adaptation. S.A.I.D. specific adaptation to imposed demand. As you continue to load the structural components, they continue to get stronger and more adept to handling the load.

    Those people may be genetically blessed with larger frames and other advantages but nobody wakes up and steps under that weight to start.
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    Its all in the way you load those disks and allow the body to properly dissipate that external load throughout the posterior chain. People speak alot about "core strength and stability" but its the movement pattern itself that must be functional and proper for these athletes to avoid sustaining a serious injury. Takes time to hammer that pattern into a movement that works and protects at the same time.

    Hope that helps a bit and Im def no expert
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    So weight training makes the actual little disks themselves stronger?
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    Quote Originally Posted by vkg1 View Post
    So weight training makes the actual little disks themselves stronger?
    The muscles around them yes. Proper form and core strength play a role. For example I can RDL for 345x5 and my lower back is fine. My buddy can't do more than 185 without ****ing himself up. 1 . he moved to fast to load the bar. Slow down. 2. His form is iffy. That's a huge role. 3. His lower back may not be that strong at all to begin with.

    I use a belt past 275 to stabilize my spine and i feel like that plays a role as well. Actually I know it does.

    Not to mention your body adapts to weight. Someone squatting 135 for the first time is going to be a lot more sore than someone squatting 135 (for a working set) for the third time. Hence progressive overload and the need to increase intensity. Alright I'm going off topic here.
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    Any advice on how to learn what the correct patterns are? I did deadlifts for 10 years and then one day I get a bad injury and am wondering if I will ever be able to do them again. I try doing them again with almost no weight and my back was bothering me again for a week after. They're the only thing that makes my hamstrings grow.
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    Well, it is certainly hard to train when you are in pain or hurt. Been there done that and I know how hard it is when you want to train but have to side step..
    What kind of advice did your doc give or any time frame?
    Any trigger point therapy in the glutes, hams and the belt line?
    What about trap bar deads? I know they are a bit more user friendly.
    What about cutting the ROM some and try some rack pulls from the pins?
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    I couldn't see a doctor because I live in a country where it just isn't available to me. Yes I know that is very bad, but unfortunately it's the reality of the situation for me now. I was thinking of saving a lot of money and trying to get an MRI the next time I visit the USA or something. But I'm not there yet. If I go to the doctor here I will not be able to get an MRI, it will cost a lot of money, and I will be told just to not do any lifting...

    Can you tell me more about trigger point therapy? The symptoms I have are that I had pain in my hip occasionally for many years, but I always thought it was because of my very flat feet. I wish I had known about the sciatic nerve years ago. Instead, I thought some foreshadowing? tightness I had felt in my back and hips were joints and muscle fatigue. The one day where I got sharp pain and almost collapsed doing deadlifts is what put 2 and 2 together for me. For weeks after, when I would try to do hamstring curls, my left leg was considerably weaker than the right. Other than that, I just kinda have a generalized feeling of "my back is bothering me". It's hard to describe.

    You are right, I should probably try to wade back in or switch to trap bar deads. When I tried them before, I felt like they were more similar to squats than to deadlifts, so I stopped. But maybe that's just a matter of practice... Also, yes doing only cut ROM at first sounds like another good idea.
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    Quote Originally Posted by vkg1 View Post

    You are right, I should probably try to wade back in or switch to trap bar deads. When I tried them before, I felt like they were more similar to squats than to deadlifts, so I stopped. But maybe that's just a matter of practice... Also, yes doing only cut ROM at first sounds like another good idea.
    Well, I am not really saying, to just go for it. I just said, that after having back pains and strains or whatever myself that are (from lifting and all sorts of other things), I still manage to somehow bounce back and get back to the gym. I also do a bit of physical work for my job, so I have to more or less keep in some kind of shape.

    If you are unable to see a doc, I am not quite sure what to tell you, but you can google trigger point therapy and or chioropractic, or A.R.T. or Dr. Sarno, TMS or other alternatives some have used, to rid themselves of painful back issues.
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    Quote Originally Posted by vkg1 View Post
    I got a disk injury a few months ago while doing deadlifts and sometimes feel like I was instantly transformed into an old man who will have a stiff back for the rest of his life. I have faith that things will improve. But it seems like my back just always bothers me a little in a hard to describe way. I went from feeling as good as I ever did in my youth (i.e. basically feeling invincible), to suddenly always being aware that I cannot move around as freely anymore. Suddenly I'm conscious of how everything we do relies on the integrity of these little disks in our backs...

    I see olympic lifters, strongmen, etc lifting ungodly amount of weight. Why don't people's spines just break? Or at least the little disks not just collapse? I understand that muscles stabilize them and all that. But ultimately all the weight is supported by those little disks in the spine. How do those superhuman strength guys do it?
    The weight isn't supported by the spine. Consider a box squat. It seems like once you sit down the weight will be supported entirely by the spine, directly from the shoulders where the bar sits to where your ass meets the box. However, that's not what's happening. The spine isn't supporting the weight because it's not capable of supporting the weight, that's not what a spine does. If a lifter sitting on a box with say 400 lb on their back were to suddenly relax every muscle in their body, their spine would not support the weight. In fact it would fold in half and snap like a twig right away. A spine just isn't capable of holding up that kind of weight. So it's the muscles that are supporting the weight, not the spine.

    I'm not sure what a disk injury is but I know I've been banged up a lot, particularly from deadlifts. The first time I went to a doctor and he gave me a giant bottle of codeine pills and a week off work. I didn't mind the codeine, particularly in regards to watching tv, but getting around to do daily things was a nightmare. The next time it happened I went to a massage therapist and was lifting again in 3 days.
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    But what you say must be physically impossible, no? Muscles can only induce tension. They cannot "push". Thus, ultimately any load applied to our bodies above the hips is opposed by the spine.
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    Does not really work that way. They have extension and flexion. The body has agonist and antagonists that work together. There are also involuntary muscles and or support muscles say like the spinal erectors.
    Otherwise you would be in a relaxed state like sleeping (you know when you get the head bobs trying to stay awake?) and you could not stand erect while sleeping without some muscles supporting the structure.
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    I was in a wheel chair, had two back surgeries and I am lifting again. I use many tricks to get around the back issues.You can get a belt that you can attach weight to. You can do rows laying down strapped to a bench and pull a cable to your chest. I use cables in many exercises to take the weight off of my back. Although I tried to do high rep back exercises until my back got stronger. I do shrugs using cables. Over a period of time, the muscles in my back have gotten stronger and I am almost normal today. If you have any questions, I try to be here weekly.
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    Good for you man! I admire the dedication.
    Props!

    Quote Originally Posted by grega60438 View Post
    I was in a wheel chair, had two back surgeries and I am lifting again. I use many tricks to get around the back issues.You can get a belt that you can attach weight to. You can do rows laying down strapped to a bench and pull a cable to your chest. I use cables in many exercises to take the weight off of my back. Although I tried to do high rep back exercises until my back got stronger. I do shrugs using cables. Over a period of time, the muscles in my back have gotten stronger and I am almost normal today. If you have any questions, I try to be here weekly.
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