I hurt my back a few months back. It bothers me still, especially with heavy deadlifts and front squats. What would you recommend to overcome this?
The key to addressing this issue is directed and focused work in the gym. Whether you have a chronic back injury or you are completely healthy it is very important to include exercises into your programming that address overall back health.
Here are a few exercises that you can include in your programming that will help start fixing your back and that will help keep you healthy in the future:
1) Straight Leg Deadlifts: There is certainly a link between flexible hamstrings and a healthy back. People with tight hamstrings tend to develop low back pain. Tight hamstrings can increase stress in the lower back and this subsequently causes pain. Include straight-leg deadlifts done perfectly for form to help correct/prevent this issue.
2) Romanian Deadlifts: see description above. Once again do these with light weight and make sure the form is perfect.
3) Static Holds: having strong, well balanced, resilient core muscles can help alleviate/prevent back pain. Start including plenty of static holding in your program that focuses on building the muscles of the core. You can do this in some form every day. I would suggest adding in FLR holds and overhead holds. Make sure you keep the form strict. Often times people will cheat the movement. If you do 300 total seconds (i.e. 5 minutes) of static holding then do so in sets of 30-60 seconds and keep the form as strict as possible.
If you wanted to include these in your programming you could do the following a few times a week. You could do this at the end of a difficult workout or you could do this on a recovery day:
3x10 Straight Leg Deadlift
300sec FLR Hold (Done in sets of 30sec)
300sec Overhead Hold @ 2 x 10# DB (done in sets of 30sec)