Kettlebell Swings and Low Back Pain | Week 24 | Movement Fix Monday | Dr. Ryan DeBell

Kettlebell Swings and Low Back Pain | Week 24 | Movement Fix Monday | Dr. Ryan DeBell

(upbeat music) – I’m Dr. Ryan DeBell
from The Movement Fix. This is The Movement Fix
Monday, and what I want to talk to you guys about
is one of the most common reasons that people have low back pain after doing kettlebell swings. Now anytime I say someone
has low back pain due to XYZ, I don’t know what the cause
is because there could be a lot of different causes
for all sorts of back pain. But this is something I have seen a lot, and it is very common. So let me show you guys
what I’m talking about. There’s two types of swings that people do in terms of how they stop
the swing at the top. So there’s a hard kind of
muscular stopping point that people create. So for example if I was
doing swings to here, I’d go down, I’d come
up, and then I create this firm muscular
controlled stopping point. So that’s swing number
one, which is what we want. The second type of stopping
mechanism that people have, is sort of this sagging into the joints of their back stopping. So what that would look
like, is the person swings and then when they get here,
they sort of lean backwards a little bit, or if they’re
going all the way overhead, they go up and they sort
of push their hips forward. Now at first glance, you may
not see it or you may not realize that that can be an issue, but here’s what’s happening in the back. So imagine this person’s doing
a swing, and they go down, and they come up, and then
nothing happens at the spine at the top when they’re creating
that firm solid end point using the muscles of their
body, versus the person who goes down and then
they come up, and then they let this little (grunts)
through the joints happen, and hey maybe that isn’t a
big deal after 10, 20 reps, but if you’re doing a lot of
swings, hundreds and hundreds, this little extension
here can add up over time. Now, it just so happens
with a kettlebell swing, and there’s been some
research to show this, there is an extension created
there because when you’re swinging there’s this
angular momentum that kind of goes in a circle, and pushes you forward. So unless you’re creating
a firm stopping point using the muscles, that
is likely to happen. Now, for the person
who has this complaint, you have to find that they
actually have this thing happening in order for
the drill to be effective that I’m gonna show you guys. Now in order to do the drill
that I’m gonna show you, which is teaching someone
how to create arm motion like the top of a swing while
they create stiffness here, we have to have that person
get into their neutral back position, and the best
way of course to do that is getting in the cat-camel. So we just go down here on all fours. And I’ll have the person round and extend, and kind of find where
their end ranges are, and then put them into
what I feel like is roughly their neutral, which for a
lot of people is not here, but a little bit more
here in the low back. And then I have them
concentrate on what that feeling is like, so when they go to standing, they know how to get there. Now what I have set up here,
is a band on a pull-up bar, which is admittedly
too low for this drill, but it’s what I got. So I have it up here. What I’m gonna do is
get into that position that I just taught
myself in the cat-camel, which is my neutral. I’m gonna have my arms straight. I’m gonna hold myself
muscularly in this kind of neutral position, and
I’m gonna pull down here. Now this is the easier part of the rep. Typically the harder part
of the rep for people is letting the arms come
up while the low back and spine stay where they are, and going back and forth,
and you can of course breathe and brace here to
pattern that stuff as well. But for a lot of people,
when these arms come up, they really want to lean
back here because that’s their tendency on how they
do the swing like this. And so we’re trying to break
up this lumbar extension and hip extension with
shoulder flexion movement so that the movement just
happens in the shoulders at the top without this
other stuff occurring. And so you may have to
do 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 1,000 reps here to break up
that pattern of movement. It’s not even so much about how hard it is in terms of resistance,
but having some resistance while you are coordinating
these movements together. So after we do some of that,
you can go back to the swing and get them to kind of
create that same feeling where they’re tensing up
here while the arms ride up. So, hey, you know what? Like I said before, there’s never just one cause of low back pain. I hate saying that,
“Do XYZ for back pain,” because there’s so many
different types of back pain. However in this case,
for a kettlebell swing, with this type of thing,
this can be effective. So make sure you are
applying the right thing to the right person at the right time. That’s what I got for
you guys for this week on Movement Fix Monday. Hey, if you don’t already
like the Facebook page, go to, follow me there, support The Movement Fix, and subscribe to YouTube,
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at The Movement Fix. See ya guys next week. (upbeat rock music)

6 comments on “Kettlebell Swings and Low Back Pain | Week 24 | Movement Fix Monday | Dr. Ryan DeBell

  1. Sigma CrossFit Post author

    Just wanted to say how much I appreciate all of your videos! All the drills & progressions are useful for warm ups, & also post-WOD skill development!

  2. HeSaidSheSaidMv Post author

    I have read that Kettlebells can actually help people who have existing low back issues. I am considering it, however I can't for the life of me get past the whole bending from the waist thing, which everyone seems to teach in regards to kettlebells. That's how backs get hurt to begin with.

  3. LuLu Bell Post author

    My back pain after kettle bell swings.i shouldn't done kettle bell swings it's been over 3 days still hurts


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