Author Box
Articles Categories
All Categories
Articles Resources

5 Ways Weightlifting Causes Back Pain

February 27, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 165

Lower back pain is a common phenomenon, both among new lifters and old pros. Weight-loaded machines and free weights can lead to back pain in a number of ways. Educating yourself about causes of back pain while lifting will help keep your gym visits pain-free.

Muscle Imbalance

One long-term cause of back pain is muscle imbalance. If your resistance training regimen doesn't focus on balancing all of the body's muscle groups, you likely have an imbalance. If you do leg presses, for example, you're developing huge, tight quadriceps. If you don't balance this with hamstring exercises, the tight quads will pull the pelvis down in front, change muscle tensions throughout the pelvis and lower back and affect the arch of the lumbar spine. Machines that emphasize one muscle group like the leg press are bound to leave you with muscle imbalances; it is best to stick with exercises that train multiple muscle groups.

Muscle Fatigue/Spasm

This is a cause of back pain both for competitive lifters and new lifters who are pushing themselves too hard. Muscles rely on a contraction/relaxation cycle to draw in new oxygen and pump out waste. When a muscle is overused, as when too many repetitions are performed without adequate time for the muscle to rest in between, the muscle runs out of energy and goes into spasm. This forcible contraction can last anywhere from seconds to days, and if overuse continues, it can become chronic.

Too Much, Too Soon

New lifters may fall prey to the world of ego and machismo sometimes found in the gym. Attempting to start with heavy weights can lead to strained muscles and ligaments in the back, neck and shoulders. Add improper form to the mix and injury is almost certain. You can start small and, if energy level allows, perform more repetitions than you would with heavier weights.

Picking Up, Putting Down Weight

You're eager to get into the workout, so you run to your weight of choice. Stop and remind yourself that the workout starts when you bend down to pick that weight up. Just as proper form is imperative during your workout, it is also needed to lift the weight from the ground or rack. If you begin your workout with a strain, it could turn into a more serious injury as you continue to use the muscle or ligament involved throughout your session. Use proper body mechanics when initially lifting the weight and when setting it down at the end of your workout, bending at the knees rather than the lower back.


Some fitness enthusiasts advocate the use of weight-loaded machines over free weights since machines carry less risk of improper form. When using free weights, you have to balance yourself and adjust posture with no physical surfaces to guide you. It is always best to begin weight training with an instructor who can help you fine-tune your form.

For those new to exercise, beginning with body weight exercises is likely the safest bet; though improper form is a concern for any exercise, using an external weight increases your risk of injury. Begin with exercises to build your core; this will ensure that your lower back and abdominal muscles are strong enough to handle weight training a little later on. See for a slideshow of exercises that will give you a toned, balanced core.

Knowing these 5 common causes of weightlifting back pain will help you guard against them. The majority of injury prevention while lifting is self-awareness: Know your limits, concerning both fitness and energy levels. Being cautious will keep you in the gym and out of the doctor's office.

Education in back pain is the cheapest form of self preservation. Learn about what causes back pain and 4 other things that cause sciatic nerve pain.

Source: EzineArticles
Was this Helpful ?

Rate this Article

Article Tags:

Back Pain Exercise


Weightlifting Back Pain


Lower Back Pain


Lifting Back Pain


Back Pain Causes

Your body needs glucose in order to get energy for cell and tissue function. Without energy, the cells do not function properly and the immune system is compromised. When your blood glucose levels

By: Clifford H Woods l Health & Fitness > Diabetes l July 09, 2013 lViews: 2617

Heavy Metals - Free radicals (tissue damaging molecules that cause aging and bodily deterioration) are the result of the ever-present toxins within our environment. Heavy metals are contained in

By: Clifford H Woods l Health & Fitness > Supplements l July 09, 2013 lViews: 606

Braun shavers and trimmers are very standard brand and their new curser beard and head trimmer is big for trimming beards. This trimmer was specifically made to be able to trim down your beard and

By: Lovey Blackburn l Health & Fitness > Beauty l December 20, 2012 lViews: 459

On this website you will find latest makeup reviews and swatches from real people. You will know how makeup products look in real life, and you can also participate! Post your photos, tips and

By: l Health & Fitness > Beauty l December 09, 2012 lViews: 320

You can either seek referrals from friends and associates or search for consultants on the internet. The latter, in our opinion, would be a viable option for those pressed for time.You can either

By: Simon Liva l Health & Fitness > Diseases l December 07, 2012 lViews: 268

Healthy living is essential in today's world, to ensure one's well being. Learn how to relax and improve your mood now! Be it exercising, or indulging in one's passions and hobbies, be sure to set

By: Clarinda l Health & Fitness > Mind Body Spirit l December 02, 2012 lViews: 262

Chances are you're one of the millions who put "get to the gym more often" as one of your New Year's resolutions. While that's an admirable goal, you need a basic gameplan to make sure you're

By: Riley Dayel Health & Fitness > Personal Trainingl June 12, 2012 lViews: 167

Speed is a game changer in sports. If you're looking to become an athlete that gets noticed, then having break-neck speed is a must. Read on to discover tips on how to improve speed in all sports.

By: Conor J Dohertyl Health & Fitness > Personal Trainingl June 11, 2012 lViews: 170

If you are trying to get some muscles in your body, then you need to start strength training routines as soon as you make the decision. Strength training is the most effective way to build muscle and

By: Sereyvorn Kengl Health & Fitness > Personal Trainingl June 11, 2012 lViews: 160

Think about this... the U.S. has become the most obese country on the planet, yet we spend the most amount of money on weight loss and fitness products and supplements! If there were a pill or

By: Riley Dayel Health & Fitness > Personal Trainingl June 07, 2012 lViews: 187

When searching for personal training schools, the first thing you want to remember is that there are a lot of programs and certifications out there, but only a select few are going to give you

By: Shivaun Martynesl Health & Fitness > Personal Trainingl June 07, 2012 lViews: 149

In just about any gym throughout the country you constantly see both guys and girls working the same muscle groups. Of course these muscles are usually upper body muscles and are most noticeable

By: Riley Dayel Health & Fitness > Personal Trainingl June 07, 2012 lViews: 180

Flip flops are a favorite of many in warm weather. Learn why this type of shoe is not designed for everyday use.

By: Sean Burtonl Health & Fitness > Back Painl April 17, 2012 lViews: 285

Prolonged periods of coughing can cause back pain. Learn about the types of back pain caused by coughing and how to manage them.

By: Sean Burtonl Health & Fitness > Back Painl April 15, 2012 lViews: 296

If chiropractic care doesn't help your pain, it may not be the chiropractor's fault. Learn what may be getting in the way of feeling results from chiropractic care.

By: Sean Burtonl Health & Fitness > Pain Managementl April 07, 2012 lViews: 138