Olympic lifting and lower back tightness

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    Olympic lifting and lower back tightness


    been doing crossfit for 5.5 months and have progressed well and quickly.

    When doing for instance high rep snatches or cleans during a WOD I get a lower back tightness that becomes rather debilitating and need to stop lifting to start some mobility work or cease completely.

    any thoughts or help as to what may be the culprit. I have a vid on YouTube of snatch grip deadlift set up if you need to critique my technique.

    thanks.
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    Quote Originally Posted by EBF_2356 View Post
    been doing crossfit for 5.5 months and have progressed well and quickly. When doing for instance high rep snatches or cleans during a WOD I get a lower back tightness that becomes rather debilitating and need to stop lifting to start some mobility work or cease completely. any thoughts or help as to what may be the culprit. I have a vid on YouTube of snatch grip deadlift set up if you need to critique my technique. thanks.
    The culprit is probably high rep snatches and cleans, on top of what I'd guess is a strength workout prior to the wod, and then coupling them with other exercises done with very little rest.
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    Quote Originally Posted by EBF_2356 View Post
    been doing crossfit for 5.5 months and have progressed well and quickly.

    When doing for instance high rep snatches or cleans during a WOD I get a lower back tightness that becomes rather debilitating and need to stop lifting to start some mobility work or cease completely.

    any thoughts or help as to what may be the culprit. I have a vid on YouTube of snatch grip deadlift set up if you need to critique my technique.

    thanks.
    Put the video up here.
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    Quote Originally Posted by EBF_2356 View Post
    high rep ...tightness that becomes rather debilitating
    Aw, I remember my first pump, too! Just poking fun. But seriously, pump is going to happen.

    I'll also guess that your form is bad and your abs are weak. Look to stay upright, hips down in starting position, keep the bar close to your body, work the shrug and triple extension. High reps is about efficiency, not brute strength. If the low back is hurting, my guess is the bar is drifting away from the body on the pull. If you record your lifts from the side, you can track the line of the pull.
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    Quote Originally Posted by todd muelheim View Post
    The culprit is probably high rep snatches and cleans, on top of what I'd guess is a strength workout prior to the wod, and then coupling them with other exercises done with very little rest.
    ^^this. Oly lifts aren't meant to be done in super high volume in my opinion. I do think some aspects of CF are good but I disagree with most of the programming (or lack thereof).

    Some gyms are good, most are money makers.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CT3 View Post
    ^^this. Oly lifts aren't meant to be done in super high volume in my opinion. I do think some aspects of CF are good but I disagree with most of the programming (or lack thereof).

    Some gyms are good, most are money makers.
    Yup. I've done crossfit before and the Olympic lifts with bad form are a no no with me.
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    Yeah I'm def not just trying to knock cf. I tried it, and took the good and left the bad when I stopped. I've never had issues with pain during cleans and snatches except when I did cf. I usually keep them to triples though, as opposed to amrap...
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    Quote Originally Posted by todd muelheim View Post
    Yeah I'm def not just trying to knock cf. I tried it, and took the good and left the bad when I stopped. I've never had issues with pain during cleans and snatches except when I did cf. I usually keep them to triples though, as opposed to amrap...
    I'm with ya. I had good gains with CF and I do their style of stuff now but regular lifts.
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    I gave it a go myself for almost a year, so yeah I'm not knocking too hard either. I just don't agree with doing 30x135lb snatches for time. Form WILL slip as you get tired.

    I would always get back pumps pretty bad doing high rep cleans and deads. Idk if taurine/beta alanine pre would help or not.
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    Forget about "pumps" or supplements and all that...

    To fix lower back tightness, look up anterior pelvic tilt. It is something you should be working constantly on within your mobility protocol. There are several methods to fix this and keep it away, but it takes constant work. Basically, you want a completely neutral spine while lifting - it will save your lower back.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gutterpump View Post
    Forget about "pumps" or supplements and all that... To fix lower back tightness, look up anterior pelvic tilt. It is something you should be working constantly on within your mobility protocol. There are several methods to fix this and keep it away, but it takes constant work. Basically, you want a completely neutral spine while lifting - it will save your lower back.
    To fix this, most should stretch low back muscles and hip flexors if they are tight. Strengthen abs (mainly low abs) and strengthen glutes! I have this problem and currently working to fix it, it takes a while especially if your low back is very tight, which mine is!
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    Quote Originally Posted by NattyForLife View Post
    To fix this, most should stretch low back muscles and hip flexors if they are tight. Strengthen abs (mainly low abs) and strengthen glutes! I have this problem and currently working to fix it, it takes a while especially if your low back is very tight, which mine is!
    Roman situps help a lot too.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tagger View Post
    Roman situps help a lot too.
    Ya, it hits the lower abs great!
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    Quote Originally Posted by NattyForLife View Post
    To fix this, most should stretch low back muscles and hip flexors if they are tight. Strengthen abs (mainly low abs) and strengthen glutes! I have this problem and currently working to fix it, it takes a while especially if your low back is very tight, which mine is!

    Yep! Especially want to stretch the Psoas muscles! They get tight from sitting, and cause the pelvis to tilt forward, which can cause hyper lordosis in the lower spine. I'm constantly working at mine everyday. I do the couch stretch for about 4min each side, or try to everyday, but I need to do more glute and core strengthening as well.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tagger View Post
    Put the video up here.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zQ7K...e_gdata_player
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    Fixed it for you:

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gutterpump View Post
    Cheers bud.

    Btw I never use straps or any lifting accessories
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    Yah that form seems pretty good.

    Do you have any clean, jerk, or snatch videos?
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    Quote Originally Posted by KrisL View Post
    Look to stay upright, hips down in starting position, keep the bar close to your body...the bar is drifting away from the body on the pull.
    You're not staying upright. Your hips start high, then rise, your shoulders move forward over the bar, and you lock out your knees before you even really pull with your back. Your whole back rounds as soon as you start to pull (you're actually starting rounded, but it gets worse). You're pushing the bar away from center with your hips on lockout, which will make the bar drift away from you when you snatch.



    Compare:

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    Big thing with the Oly lifts is to keep the core TIIIIGHT!!!! With so much goin on technically, it's easy to slump/slouch at the bottom of the catch. Especially if you are getting bar drift at the top of the 2nd pull. Toss a vid of your snatch/C&J up here. Also, if you need more help, I'll give you the email of the guy who helped me. Remember Spencer from Outlaw?? He runs another gym now, but he helped me out with a great critique for my lifts and I noticed a difference almost immediately.
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    Quote Originally Posted by KrisL View Post

    You're not staying upright. Your hips start high, then rise, your shoulders move forward over the bar, and you lock out your knees before you even really pull with your back. Your whole back rounds as soon as you start to pull (you're actually starting rounded, but it gets worse). You're pushing the bar away from center with your hips on lockout, which will make the bar drift away from you when you snatch.

    Compare:

    YouTube Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mPRYUfjPxwE
    Cheers bud
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    been releasing my hips and glutes through mobility and massage. working well.
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    Haha, yeah, since you haven't been training the lifts since birth, you'll never get as flexible as some of those guys, but you can still improve a lot. Don't forget ankle mobility, too!
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    Good timing on the thread because my wife came home from CF last week complaining about the same thing. For her, it is a core strength issue after the reps start moving up. I made her go to the gym with me and watched her lifts. Form is great until about 6 and then starts to trail and I see a forward motion with a lot of emphasis on the balls of her feet.

    I agree with everyone's synopsis in here, but mainly that some of these lifts should not be done in a 21, 15, 9 range.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kisaj View Post
    some of these lifts should not be done in a 21, 15, 9 range.
    My experience has been that learning on low reps and full-resets will give you the ability to do high rep work with good form. Unfortunately, the majority of CF would rather band-aid by using a lower weight with bad form than start off with good form - more an issue of coaching, imo. It's a no-brainer when you say it out loud, but the correct motor pathways and proper cueing should be the foundation before going after endurance/exhaustion level rep ranges.

    Example: For the past couple of years, I've been getting invited to a "Grace" (30x135 C&P) charity event and I go because: booty shorts. Since I'm not a CFer, I blow minds by finishing the competitions in the front of the pack. Last year I did the snatch heat instead, which I trained for almost exclusively in singles at weights somewhat heavier than prescribed. The form I nailed down with singles lent itself well to touch-and-go reps and left me feeling fresh as a daisy when half the people left somewhere on the cripple spectrum.
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    Yes and no. I let me wife go to this "box" because they actually do show correct form and are probably the only legit CF place I have seen. I took a couple of the WOD classes to get a feel for their style. Regardless, once you start putting oly lifts into a timed situation and have 6 other people yelling at you to push it, it creates a situation of chaos and not what you want for the majority of people.

    This isn't a CF rant, so anyone that follows it- don't take it that way. Simply an observation and opinion.
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    Quote Originally Posted by KrisL View Post
    Don't forget ankle mobility, too!
    Ankle mobility with Voodoo bands and also with regular bands like this below. Works great.


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    And here is probably one of the most important stretches to do to open up the hips, especially for people who sit a lot ( at work, etc):

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    One more issue I have is getting full hip extension in both clean and snatch. hitting from high thigh and not hip so missing that extra power pop.

    thoughts?
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    High thigh hits aren't entirely uncommon for cleans, since the hands are closer. If you're hitting thigh on a snatch, I guess it means you're popping too early, which probably means your clean is popping too early, too. I'd try making sure your heels are still on the ground when you pull the bar into your hips. I'd work with low hang pulls to get a feel for it. Then maybe move on to hang high pulls.

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    Use blocks with the bar starting knee height. This forces you to use form and not momentum into the top of the 2nd pull. Watch John Norths instructional vids. I've been Oly lifting for a couple years but still go back to them for some polishing
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wrivest View Post
    Use blocks with the bar starting knee height. This forces you to use form and not momentum into the top of the 2nd pull. Watch John Norths instructional vids. I've been Oly lifting for a couple years but still go back to them for some polishing
    Cheers bud.
    I'll get a vid and look for you to critique
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    Thanks @KrisL
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