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Old 08-19-2007, 03:25 PM   #1
Steven Low
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Default lower back/glute imbalance

Not an injury per se but I have noticed that the left side of my lower back is much stronger and more hypertrophied than my right side. On that note, I'm pretty sure my right glute is much stronger than my left. I didn't give it much thought until now but I decided to unilateral work to try to see what was up. Basically I ended up doing pistol broad jumps.

pistol broad jumps: 5x5

More or less made 10m on all of the jumps. It seems like my limit.

I can now pinpoint the source of my back. It does seem like my left glute is weaker than my right while my left lower back is stronger than my right. I was consistently getting about ~1-2 feet longer with my right leg while my left back was working much harder than my right. And this is with my left leg going first for all of the sets. I can still tell because 5 minutes later it feels like my left back has DLed 5x5 heavy while my right back is not fatigued at all.

So basically I need a bit of help on either exercises or what have you I can do to help fix this problem.
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Old 08-21-2007, 03:48 AM   #2
Allen Yeh
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Steven,

Here are some suggestions:

Anthony Bainbridge had offered some advice to me a while ago when I asked a similiar question and it was so simple I didn't think about it.

lifestyle factors:
"Stop carrying your gym bag on the same side all the time."

That could obviously apply to backpacks since in college I know I didn't always use both straps.


Things to do:
-glute activation exercises - glute bridges (all variations), x-band walks
-1-legged romanian deadlifts - check out this article
http://www.michaelboyle.biz/joomla/d...g_Training.pdf
-check the lifestyle factor
-stretch the hip flexors as a weak glute can be an indication of tight hip flexors

Hope this helps.
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Old 08-21-2007, 10:39 AM   #3
Steven Low
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Thanks.

Yeah, I've pain more and more attention to liftstyle factors over the past year or so trying to eliminate things like that, so I doubt it's the problem now. I even went to the point of putting liftstyle things on the opposite side for a while which didn't help as I was probably already too imbalanced.

I'll check out the things you suggested though!
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Old 08-21-2007, 11:50 AM   #4
Derek Simonds
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Steven, I totally agree with the page that Allen linked to. I have been doing the 1 leg 1 arm DL for the last 2 weeks and they are fantastic. What I think will help you is doing both same arm and leg and opposite arm and leg. Since my wrist is broke I can only hold the weights in my left hand. When I stand on my right leg and do the DL it feels completely different in my core and lower back.

Let us know how they work.
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Old 08-21-2007, 02:10 PM   #5
Steven Low
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Well, I don't have access to DBs... I'm *thinking* a bar would suffice but would be a bit harder. Should I put it to my side and grab it with one hand or do both hands like a regular DL?
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Old 08-21-2007, 02:15 PM   #6
Allen Yeh
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I would opt with the 2 hand method for the 1 legged rdl. The key to really hammering the glutes is to make sure you slight bend your knee as Coach Boyle recommended in the article.
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Old 08-21-2007, 06:03 PM   #7
Derek Simonds
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Unfortunately with only having one hand I have been doing all 1 handed.

The reason I thought it might be beneficial for Steven was the way you have to compensate with your lower back could help via him holding the weight in his left hand and doing the 1 leg dl on his right leg. That would really target the right lower back which he mentioned was less developed compared to his left side. If Allen thinks there would be any benefit I would do them as suitcase dl's with the barbell on my left side.

Just a thought.
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Old 08-22-2007, 03:29 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Derek Simonds View Post
Unfortunately with only having one hand I have been doing all 1 handed.

The reason I thought it might be beneficial for Steven was the way you have to compensate with your lower back could help via him holding the weight in his left hand and doing the 1 leg dl on his right leg. That would really target the right lower back which he mentioned was less developed compared to his left side. If Allen thinks there would be any benefit I would do them as suitcase dl's with the barbell on my left side.

Just a thought.
I much prefer the one dumbbell method as well but between suitcase DL's and a barbell 1 legged RDL I'd opt with the 1 legged RDL.
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"And for crying out loud. Don't go into the pain cave. I can't stress this enough. Your Totem Animal won't be in there to help you. You'll be on your own. The Pain Cave is for cowards.
Pain is your companion, don't go hide from it."
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Old 08-23-2007, 04:47 AM   #9
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From:
http://www.t-nation.com/readArticle.do?id=1694292
Quote:

Assorted Posterior Issues

Q: What do you do when you can feel one glute firing more than the other one?

A: As with the glutes, typically one of the hip flexors is tighter than the other. I'd figure out which it is (psoas, iliacus, rectus femoris etc.) and stretch the hell out of it, pairing that with glute activation and strengthening work on the same side. My right rectus femoris is way tighter than the left, and things are finally starting to come together.

Q: Is the glute-ham raise good to correct the anterior pelvic tilt?

A: I like the glute-ham raise as long as you can actively contract the glutes first and keep the hips extended throughout. This is harder than it sounds, though!

Q: Should you actively squeeze the glutes on Romanian deadlifts and pulls?

A: As I mentioned above, always focus on firing the glutes when you are coming from a hips flexed position; pulls, RDL's, good mornings, everything.

Q: Should I cut squats or lower volume until tilt is corrected?

A: I generally cut the back squatting volume, but front squats may be ideal. Play around with it and see what works for you.
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"And for crying out loud. Don't go into the pain cave. I can't stress this enough. Your Totem Animal won't be in there to help you. You'll be on your own. The Pain Cave is for cowards.
Pain is your companion, don't go hide from it."
-Kelly Starrett
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