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What exercises should I avoid when having lower back irritation or pain, without quitting lifting at all if possible?

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You should shift all the attention of lifting into finding the cause of and resolving the lower back issue. Minor back pain is a warning sign of a potentially developing problem that may pop into an excruciating condition at any time. I’ve done it.


However, what you can do is work like a dog on pull-ups and hang-ups. Back extensions are therapy for disc-issues. You should hang head-down for extended periods, like with an inversion table. And fix any bad postures, particularly sitting postures. You’re at last 1cm longer when you wake up than a couple hours later. That’s disc fluid. Yes, you can refill the discs by inversion, which also sucks bulging discs in and allows healing and repair. Of course not all back pain are disc issues. But testing these methods would give clear indication. Any pain would likely be relieved noticeably by inversion if you have a disc compression/bulging problem.

Deadlifts are pretty hard on your back, as well as front arm raise exercises. But instead of not training them at all I would go at it light, frequent and with stellar posture.


You might also benefit from targeted training to strengthen your torso and glutes, as they are the ones that protect your back. It's something to look into if you can afford a personal trainer. As well, little changes in your posture can make a massive difference in what muscles are actually being engaged. So if you can, have someone check your posture when you're going through the exercises. It might help with the pain.

First of all, figure out WHY do you have this pain.


Is it from poor form?


Are you new to lifting and simply just weak and need more time to adapt?

Are you lifting too heavy? Too fast?


Do you have a coach?


If all of these are done correctly, then you might need to be evaluated by a sports medicine specialist or doctor.

Squats, deadlifts to start. If you haven't get x-rays of your lower back & an MRI. Consult your family doc or a Sports medicine doc or both & get their input. DO NOT put this aside. I did. Worked & lifted when I shouldn't have been so 1/2 hearted about it. Have a cool 7″ scar to show for my back surgery. One disc was in pieces, & 2 are fused together. Latest prize. Arthritis throughout my back. Post 2009 surgery I see a back cracker to get squared away. One time as a beached whale being sliced & diced was enough for me. If you need surgery get it done by a Neurosurgeon. No hardware, screws, nuts, bolts, flanges, nails left behind. No welding done either. 🆒🆒 Remember, one time too many with the iron & you're wheelchair bound. I was within a hairsbreadth. P.S. Do lots of Cardio in the meantime & switch to Dumbbells. They are more forgiving when you lift.