Back Stress and Assistance Exercises in Weightlifting

Document Type

Conference Proceeding


Faculty of Computing, Health and Science


School of Biomedical and Sports Science / Centre for Exercise and Sports Science Research




Burnett, A. F., Netto, K. J., & Beard, A. J. (2002). Back Stress and Assistance Exercises in Weightlifting. Proceedings of 20th International Symposium on Biomechanics in Sports. (pp. 421-424). . Caceres, Spain. Universidad de Extremadura. Available here


The purpose of this study was to test the suitability of selected assistance exercises to strengthen the low back for the Olympic lifts in high level weightlifters. Four subjects were filmed by a five-camera Motion Analysis system operating at 120Hz completing both of the Olympic lifts (Snatch and Clean) and four assistance exercises (Romanian OeadJift (ROL), Bent-over Row (BOR), Clean Pull Oeadlift (CPO), and Good Morning (GM)). Peak Erector Spinae Force (ESF) and L5/S1 compressive and shear force (L5/S1 CF and L5/S1 SF respectively) were calculated via a top-down inverse dynamics model. Comparisons between the lifts were made using a one-way ANOVA with repeated measures. It was found that the CPO produced higher ESF than the Snatch but this exercise also produced very high L5/S1 CF and L5/S1 SF. The Clean also displayed a higher ESF than the Snatch. When normalising the data to bar weight, the BOR and GM was shown to potentially produce high ESF but coaches should consider the possibility for these exercises to produce low back injury.

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