Lower back pain recovery

General discussions about getting and staying fit that don't relate directly to your indoor rower
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rascott
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Lower back pain recovery

Post by rascott » October 12th, 2019, 4:22 am

Hi All
I’ve been putting in some 45 minute plus sessions on the Rower recently-around five times a week-usually Eric Murray’s sessions from YouTube. On Tuesday night I noticed some lower back pain which I think was associated with me trying to get my stroke length up and perhaps leaning back too far at the finish. The pain is not excruciating but it is uncomfortable and I have not rowed since. Would appreciate any guidance on typical recovery periods and any other strategies you have used to get through this recovery period and prevent future recurrence.

My DF is usually 125.

At the minute I’m letting pain be my guide but would it be better to start with some light and short sessions? Possibly the concept 2 short WODs.

My training was going really well so this is very frustrating.

Thanks in advance
Robert | 50 | 6'1 | 96 kg (213 lbs)
1 min: 300m; 1K - 3:33; 2K - 7:19; 5K - 19:22.7; 6k - 23:29; 30mins - 7315m; 10K - 40:06; 60mins: 14623m; HM: 1:35:14
Started C2 rowing Nov 2017 but rowed OTW in my youth

StrengthCoachWill
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Re: Lower back pain recovery

Post by StrengthCoachWill » October 12th, 2019, 10:49 am

I filmed some different stretches off the erg that I've found useful in alleviating low grade, muscular pain. It's mostly getting away from the lumbar area and moving through the anterior and posterior hip areas.

https://youtu.be/J7EH7AuFD7g

This will not treat a specific injury, if you've made one, nor am I qualified to diagnose a specific injury. What I do know, as a strength coach and rowing coach, is that rowers often get sore backs. This is the low grade, general muscular pain, not a specific injury to the lumbar spine like a disc, facet joint, or muscle tear. Generic LBP often occurs during periods of increased volume and intensity of rowing training, particularly when that volume and intensity comes on the erg. If we do not fix the underlying cause of the pain, the stretches won't "fix" anything, and the pain will return if the rower returns to training at the same volume, intensity, and technique.

Once you're good to erg again, fixing your technique may fix your problem. However, researchers have found that prolonged erging, defined in research as 30+ minutes continuous on static ergs (insufficient research on dynamics), increases lumbar spine movement in novice and experienced rowers alike. This increased movement is subconscious, and results in a host of effects on stroke kinematics, the major result of which is increased stress and strain to the lumbar spine area. These researchers have found prolonged erging to be a major cause of general low back pain in rowers. So, rowing with good technique is good, but that alone may not prevent back pain from occurring if the rower/coach insists on doing prolonged erging. You may want to adjust your training approach.

rascott
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Re: Lower back pain recovery

Post by rascott » October 12th, 2019, 2:23 pm

Hi Will thanks - I actually found your YouTube video while researching LBP earlier today. Will take another look and try some out.

The pain is decreasing today so I think a week off the erg should do it then ease back in with some short pieces.
Robert | 50 | 6'1 | 96 kg (213 lbs)
1 min: 300m; 1K - 3:33; 2K - 7:19; 5K - 19:22.7; 6k - 23:29; 30mins - 7315m; 10K - 40:06; 60mins: 14623m; HM: 1:35:14
Started C2 rowing Nov 2017 but rowed OTW in my youth

StrengthCoachWill
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Re: Lower back pain recovery

Post by StrengthCoachWill » October 12th, 2019, 8:08 pm

As you get back into it, an idea worth trying is the 60s break per 10 mins of continuous erging. If we're stuck with prolonged erging, then this might be a way to mitigate some of the damage to spinal structures. I'd like to see this idea tested in academic research, but for now we've got an idea and possible suggestion, and at least it doesn't cost you anything to implement.

http://www.worldrowing.com/news/back-ca ... nutes-time

jamesg
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Re: Lower back pain recovery

Post by jamesg » October 13th, 2019, 12:40 am

I noticed some lower back pain which I think was associated with me trying to get my stroke length up and perhaps leaning back too far at the finish.
What's your typical Watt/Rating ratio? How high do you set the stretcher?
08-1940, 183cm, 84kg. Last seen MHR 155, in 2k (2020-12-03) 8.47.6@23

rascott
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Re: Lower back pain recovery

Post by rascott » October 13th, 2019, 11:51 am

last session I did (when I hurt my back) was 6 x 8 min intervals with 30 secs rest. Rate was 18 rising to 22. Wattage was between 152 and 159 as the rate increased (split around 2:11)

If I do race pace pieces I'm usually at around 30 spm max

I haven't moved the stretcher from new..if you mean the foot rests, they have 2 sets of holes showing but i thought that was more a function of foot size.
Robert | 50 | 6'1 | 96 kg (213 lbs)
1 min: 300m; 1K - 3:33; 2K - 7:19; 5K - 19:22.7; 6k - 23:29; 30mins - 7315m; 10K - 40:06; 60mins: 14623m; HM: 1:35:14
Started C2 rowing Nov 2017 but rowed OTW in my youth

jamesg
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Joined: March 18th, 2006, 3:44 am
Location: Trentino Italy

Re: Lower back pain recovery

Post by jamesg » October 15th, 2019, 4:28 am

Your work level does not seem so high as to cause back problems of itself, though a thousand strokes a day is a lot. This implies a posture problem, if indeed it's erg related at all.

You could try dropping the stretcher as low as possible, which can do no harm. High feet tends to tip us backwards, which on top of
trying to get my stroke length up and perhaps leaning back too far at the finish
could lead to weak posture at the catch, with the slide close to heels and no swing forward.

The recovery sequence that puts us into a strong catch posture is as afloat: hands away, then swing, then slide.
08-1940, 183cm, 84kg. Last seen MHR 155, in 2k (2020-12-03) 8.47.6@23

RR
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Re: Lower back pain recovery

Post by RR » October 15th, 2019, 3:12 pm

I tweaked my lower back about 5 weeks ago doing flat out 100m sprints.
Was painful for a few days so I kept the intensity low and the stroke short
I also did McKenzie exercises(google it)3x daily to gently stretch the lower back and specifically the quadratus lumborum muscles where the ache was emanating from.
This worked but then I tweeted the area again after 10 days or so. This time the pain didn’t go away so stayed off rowing for 5 days but rode the BikeErg which didn’t agrevate the issue any worse.
Kept up with the McK exercises and that eased the left QL but then the right QL flamed up.
I continued rowing every couple of days but BikeErged every day with no worsening.
It was still painful in the day to day things like putting socks and shoes on, turning over in bed, getting in and out of the car etc etc.
At the beginning of last week, there was a marked improvement and as it got gradually better every day I was able to up the intensity on the rower a bit each day.
During the problematic days, I iced the lower back a few times very day.
It is now about 100% right now.
I also did self-treatment trigger pointing and deep tissue massage(upper body flexibility is good)
In the initial stages I too Ibuprofen tablets.
You need to manage the injury and not train too intensely too quickly and make sure you do your regular stretching sessions.
65 going on 66. One time full on erger. Now Erging and BikeErging.
LWT is the norm.
6:38.7 was a longtime ago

mightymayesy
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Re: Lower back pain recovery

Post by mightymayesy » October 22nd, 2019, 10:12 am

35. 6'7". Starting weight: 125kg. Current weight: 121.7kg. | 3.3kg down via rowing since 15/10/2019.
2,000m PB: 9m35.6s | 5,000m PB: 21m30.9s

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