Why the Reverse Hyper is NOT GOOD for Most People (PART 2)

Why it doesn’t work for some people and what to do instead

In my work with individuals suffering from back pain, I have observed that the reverse hyper does not work for everyone. This exercise’s flexion, compression, and extension can exacerbate problems associated with disc bulges and other damaged back tissues. Many of my clients have experienced relief from back pain when they ceased using the reverse hyper.

While some individuals report improved back pain after using the reverse hyper, it is not a one-size-fits-all solution. The movement may benefit those with a compressed spine or those who require traction, but it is not a universal remedy for back pain. It is crucial to tailor the approach to the individual’s unique goals and needs.

Keep in mind that while this movement or similar movements may feel good at the time, this is typically due to the stretch receptors. When you do this exercise, it stretches the spine muscles, creating a sensation of relaxation. However, this stretching quickly leads to instability. Although it may feel good initially, the relief lasts only 10-20 minutes before the instability causes a reflex that locks the muscles to stabilize the spine, worsening back pain overall. True back pain relief methods should last hours, not minutes.

Instead of relying solely on the reverse hyper, individuals seeking to strengthen their posterior chain can consider alternative exercises such as planks and carries. For those requiring core training for heavy load compression, back extension holds can be an effective option for building spinal extensor strength endurance.

My Background on this Topic

As a McGill Method Certified Practitioner, I emphasize evaluating each individual’s specific pain generators, MRI findings, and goals before prescribing any exercise. This thorough approach ensures that every exercise is carefully chosen based on its potential benefits and drawbacks, always keeping the individual’s goals in mind. Whether the individual is a Green Beret, a golfer, a powerlifter, or simply someone looking to improve their daily functioning, exercise selection should be approached thoughtfully and tailored to the individual’s needs.

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Brian Carroll

Owner and Founder at PowerRackStrength.com
Brian Carroll is committed to helping people overcome back pain and optimizing lifts and movement. After years of suffering, he met back specialist Prof. McGill in 2013, which led to a life-changing transformation. In 2017, they co-authored the best-selling book "Gift of Injury." On October 3, 2020, Carroll made history in powerlifting by squatting 1306 lbs, becoming the first person to break this record. He retired with a secure legacy and a life free from back pain.
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