all posts post new thread

Other/Mixed Fastest way to strenghten the erector spinaes?

Other strength modalities (e.g., Clubs), mixed strength modalities (e.g., combined kettlebell and barbell), other goals (flexibility)

blubb

Level 1 Valued Member
Would like to strenghten them to improve my posture! I'm thinking squats but maybe there is something better? It's my main priority so if I can go lighter weights to reduce fatiguing my quads to do more volume I'm willing to do that. What would be the optimal way to do this in your opinion? Sets/Reps, how much % of 1RM and how many days per week? Thanks!!
 

Steve Freides

Staff
Senior Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
In addition, for variety sake: HS plank, good mornings.
I'm not sure I'd go with planks, as there is a bit of hollow position to that, not necessarily the best thing if one is trying to work on standing up straighter. But the "vertical plank" we talk about at the top of the swing - to me, that's a different posture.

-S-
 

blubb

Level 1 Valued Member
Deadlift a barbell.

Swing a kettlebell with a real plank at the top.

-S-
Do you think I should go lighter weights with deadlifts (10-12 reps) or something that I can only do for like 3-4 reps?

Hmm don't have access to kettlebells but maybe I can try it with a dumbbell
 

Coyotl

Level 6 Valued Member
Do you think I should go lighter weights with deadlifts (10-12 reps) or something that I can only do for like 3-4 reps?

Hmm don't have access to kettlebells but maybe I can try it with a dumbbell
I don't like swinging with dumbbells. I think a good alternative in your case would be higher rep (12-15 reps, maybe even up to 20 reps) zercher good mornings with a focus on contracting the back hard into extension. An alternative to that would be to try Dan John's goatbag swing with a dumbbell.

If you are competent at deadlifting, I would suggest working up to a single set of 3-5 reps. If you want to do higher reps, I would do straight-leg deadlifts or Romanian deadlifts for sets of 8-12.
 

Steve Freides

Staff
Senior Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
Do you think I should go lighter weights with deadlifts (10-12 reps) or something that I can only do for like 3-4 reps?

Hmm don't have access to kettlebells but maybe I can try it with a dumbbell
You want perfect form. Sets of 5 with 75% would be perfect, maybe 70% to start with. 75% is around a 10-12 RM anyway, so you'd be doing 50% of your max reps with that weight, give or take a little.

-S-
 

DocMike

Level 5 Valued Member
For low back development squats and DL are not optimal. They tax the back and are usually limited by low back strength/fatigue but don't develop it very well. For pure low back development I would do the below sequence. Push #1 and then choose weights you can do the rest with an RPE of 8 so you work the back but don't crush it

1. RDL or chain supported GM for 3 sets of 8-10. I like camber bar for this
2. KB swings, 2 handed, for 3 sets of 15.
3. Lumbar cobra hyperextensions for 2 sets of 25.
4. Superman for 2 sets of 25.
5. Abdominal work 3 sets of 25-50. Don't forget the abs.
 

North Coast Miller

Level 8 Valued Member
Isometric Deadlift, Isometric Good Mornings, Broad jump - that would be fastest.

Longer term you'd want to use kettlebell Swing, Barbell Deadlift, Back-loaded Good Mornings to build some mass and improve metabolic health.
 

TimothyGander

Level 1 Valued Member
Keep in mind that your posture is determined not only by erector spinae muscles' strength. Glutes and abs are equally if not more important, in fact one of the typical patterns of bad posture is created by weak/underused glutes and abs together with tight hip flexors and cramped lower back. If good posture, and not just development of the specific low back muscles, is the objective, I would the good suggestion you've already received - a big pull, such as kettlebell swings or barbell deadlifts. I don't know if you can do these effectively with a dumbbell.

Overly tight flexors usually also contribute to a bad posture. I suggest you look into Relax into Stretch and pick a hip flexor stretch to do 2-3 times a week.

Lastly, lats, while commonly thought of as an upper back muscle, also support a good posture and work in synergy with lower back musculature. Bodybuilding-style pullups, with pinched shoulder blades and a big chest (together with a hip flexor stretch) may give you the best bang for your buck in posture improvement terms if you don't have access to kettle- or barbells.
 
Last edited:

Steve W.

Level 7 Valued Member
Would like to strenghten them to improve my posture!
Posture is your habitual carriage. It isn't even necessarily clear what exactly "good" or "poor" posture is. At what point does deviation from a theoretical "ideal" posture become problematic? In what way is it problematic?

Even assuming you can define good posture, weak this or tight that may contribute to deviations from "good" posture, be the result of deviations from "good" posture, or just coexist with deviations from "good" posture.

It's unlikely that just strengthening one muscle group will have any significant effect on posture. It doesn't take strong spinal erectors, or much strength anywhere to have "good" posture. Imagine a 5'10" tall, 110lb fashion model walking down the catwalk. She may have very elegant posture, but do you think she has very strong back muscles?
 
Last edited:

blubb

Level 1 Valued Member
Wow, really good answers here, thanks!

I think I got bad posture because I trained the wrong way. First, too much pressing going on, then when I tried to fix it by training back, maybe I wasn't contracting my scapula the right way. I was just squeezing them together and didn't think about pushing them down as well. Not sure if this had an effect though.
But maybe my biggest mistake was that when I was doing the one arm bent over row, I rowed it to my chest instead of my stomach, which probably created a huge imbalance between my upper and lower back (strong upper lats, weak lower lats)? I was doing it cause I thought hitting more of the rear delts would help pull back my shoulders lol.

My core and glute is pretty strong and I am doing dead bugs to strenghten my extremely weak hip flexors caused by APT.
I'm also doing mobility drills every day but I still feel doing the correct exercises will solve this problem a lot quicker. At least it's getting better and better so will just have to keep going! Resistance bands are on their way so can't wait to start with them! Once my shoulders get better, maybe it will all improve.

Now, I just need to learn how to deadlift :) Hope it won't be a problem with weak hips
 

Coyotl

Level 6 Valued Member
Wow, really good answers here, thanks!

I think I got bad posture because I trained the wrong way. First, too much pressing going on, then when I tried to fix it by training back, maybe I wasn't contracting my scapula the right way. I was just squeezing them together and didn't think about pushing them down as well. Not sure if this had an effect though.
But maybe my biggest mistake was that when I was doing the one arm bent over row, I rowed it to my chest instead of my stomach, which probably created a huge imbalance between my upper and lower back (strong upper lats, weak lower lats)? I was doing it cause I thought hitting more of the rear delts would help pull back my shoulders lol.

My core and glute is pretty strong and I am doing dead bugs to strenghten my extremely weak hip flexors caused by APT.
I'm also doing mobility drills every day but I still feel doing the correct exercises will solve this problem a lot quicker. At least it's getting better and better so will just have to keep going! Resistance bands are on their way so can't wait to start with them! Once my shoulders get better, maybe it will all improve.

Now, I just need to learn how to deadlift :) Hope it won't be a problem with weak hips
What exactly are you calling bad posture? A rounded thoracic (kyphotic) spine?
 

blubb

Level 1 Valued Member
Posture is your habitual carriage. It isn't even necessarily clear what exactly "good" or "poor" posture is. At what point does deviation from a theoretical "ideal" posture become problematic? In what way is it problematic?

Even assuming you can define good posture, weak this or tight that may contribute to deviations from "good" posture, be the result of deviations from "good" posture, or just coexist with deviations from "good" posture.

It's unlikely that just strengthening one muscle group will have any significant effect on posture. It doesn't take strong spinal erectors, or much strength anywhere to have "good" posture. Imagine a 5'10" tall, 110lb fashion model walking down the catwalk. She may have very elegant posture, but do you think she has very strong back muscles?
Btw, I keep hearing those examples but I just don't think it's the same thing. That fashion model won't have built a big back indeed (so she only needs to do some stretching to have a good posture), but a big back can actually cause bad posture, with the lats flaring out causing rounded shoulders. Look at swimmers for example.

To answer your question. I just think it looks pretty bad and don't think it's good for the body longterm. A bit hunched is okay but I personally don't like it when it's excessive.
 

Philippe Geoffrion

Level 6 Valued Member
Posture is habitual really and often reflects someone’s overall demeanor. Your daily work will also influence this…if you sit in front of a computer all day…

I’m surprised no one ever mentions the feet in regards to posture since they basically affect the position of nearly every joint above save maybe the elbows, wrists…

Pavel did write an article on the site about this…

 
Top Bottom