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Rolling with a newish blue belt today and the dude proceeded to repeatedly try and choke me with his belt from mount and side. I decided not to let him get a tap like this and just went into survival mode, but it left me wondering if belt chokes are generally considered ok or not outside of competition?


Hey, been bouldering 15+ years, but recently (since 3 yrs ago) my lower back locks up whenever I lift a foot much higher than my knee.

I can hang out in a lizard type yoga pose quite comfortably, but there’s something specific about climbing movement/tension that really messes with my lower back.

My core is fine - I can hold a plank quite happily if it wasn’t so boring, and can even do a decent front lever sometimes when the planets and stars align.

I tried doing weighted squats to strengthen the lower back but my lower back/SI just locks up as I start to lower into the squat (a few inches down) once I get to any decent weight on (60kg or so)

It’s really getting me down, as it’s limiting the movements I can do and the type of problems I want to try. Anything with a high foot is a no go now.

Has anyone had anything like this? Any suggestions?

EDIT: Thanks so much for all the replies, this sub-reddit is great! I looked into each suggestion & so far the psoas suggestions seem to be most likely - doing soft tissue work on them feels super tender. I'll keep going for a month or so & report back with any progress/lack of. Thanks again - was really cool to get so many helpful and well thought out suggestions.


Hi, every time I go climbing my lower back kind of seizes up whenever I try to lift a foot up above knee height to reach a hold. My core is strong, and I can comfortably do a lizard pose with my elbows to the floor, but that same type of leg movement during climbing is almost impossible for me now.

I get the same exact pain in my back if i’m sitting down and lift a foot up to put my shoe on. It just feels like my lower back totally locks up.

I tried to do squats to help strengthen my lower back and sometimes the squat feels fine, but sometimes it sort of “catches” in the top 3-5 inches of movement as I begin to lower down, and my lower back locks up. Once the weight gets past around 60kg my back locks up about 50% of the time, always towards the top of the movement, just as I start to lower.

Years ago I had a hip x ray which the doc said showed a slight flare of the left hip “ball” joint. My left hip is definitely a bit reluctant to externally rotate, but never painful - could this be causing an imbalance?

It’s really getting me down as I can’t really climb anymore (been climbing for 15+ years) and other things like surfing are also getting less enjoyable as I get this same pain. With surfing when I come out of the water, sometimes I struggle to even reach past my knees.

I stretch regularly and do soft tissue work too. When i’m warmed up I can reach my toes/do a decent lizard pose/down dog so i’m not super inflexible, but somehow I have no range of motion in certain situations. I’ve tried yoga/physio/chiros/foundation training/egoscue/massage but nothing much works - I feel like i’m missing out on something obvious here!

Thanks and sorry for rambling!


Been looking at The site looks good, and the guy presenting the courses is obviously really mobile. All seems legit! However the courses are at quite a high price point to say the least.

I just wanted to know if anyone else had taken the plunge with these courses and what their thoughts were - good/bad/quirks - as well as what the general outline and daily time reqs were?

Otherwise, any worthwhile online courses people can recommend wholeheartedly?

Thanks in advance for any shared experiences.

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Cake day
March 14, 2018
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