Dead Lifts – Great gym based exercise for multifidus (IF performed properly)

Dead Lifts – Great gym based exercise for multifidus (IF performed properly)

Dead lifts are a more direct, gym based exercise that aims to work the multifidus during movement. The multifidus muscle needs to stabilise the lower back so that the major gluteal muscle (gluteus maximus) allows you to bend and lift.   These 2 muscles work hand in hand in many major movements, such as sitting to standing, doing squats and walking up stairs.

Come up next to the bar and grip onto the bar just past waist width apart.

Photo 1 deadlift










To lift the bar up, begin by doing the following

  1. Bring your shoulder blade back and up just a little bit (although this is mainly a back exercise, it is important to set your shoulders up properly before lifting)
  2. Bend your knees so that the bar begins just above your knees

Photo 2 deadlift









Before lifting, squeeze your back muscles together to switch on multifidus (as previously described). Make sure you keep your back straight, and lift the bar using your gluteals

Keeping multifidus on, by continuing to squeeze the back muscle, and your knees a little bit bent, allow the bar to slide down the thighs until you feel a pull in the back of your thighs (hamstrings).

Photo 3 deadlift









Keeping your back straight, using your gluteals, tuck your bottom in and allow the bar to slide back up your thighs to the starting position.

Photo 4 deadlift









If you feel this exercise in your back at any stage, either the weight is too heavy for your gluteals and multifidus or the technique is not correct. You should be able to maintain contraction of multifidus throughout this exercise. If you can not, don’t slide the bar down the thighs as much when performing the exercise or reduce the weight or both.

Why ‘sit-ups’ is not a good idea for women who are pregnant

During pregnancy, most women develop a split in their abdominal muscles. Sit-ups increase the abdominal pressure and encourage the split between the abdominal muscles, making the recovery of these muscles after childbirth slower and problematic.

Sit ups do NOT strengthen the core stabilisers. It does NOT work the core stabilisers, the transversus abdominus and multifidus. These muscles need to be trained to help with the recovery of the split in the abdominal muscles.

Sit ups is a dynamic exercise, specifically training the prime movers which often inhibits the activity of the core stabilisers from working. Without the strong base of core stability, sit ups can cause back pain, as it puts extra pressure on the discs of the lower back. It also increases the risk of injuring the discs and causing long term lower back pain.