Does your body ever hurt or have troubles functioning during the day?  Do certain movements bother your symptoms more than others?  These are common questions that we frequently ponder during activities and our daily lives.  Our community at Rejuv Medical would like to help improve your lifestyle through functional training and movement.  Together, let’s make changes this year to improve our quality of life.

A functional movement is based on real world situational biomechanics such as getting out of bed, lifting grocery bags into your car or even reaching for your favorite coffee mug in the top cupboard.  These functional activities usually involve multi-planar, multi-joint movements which place demand on the body’s core musculature and innervation.  A simple squat can be difficult or even painful at times without proper form and muscle recruitment.  Let’s take a deeper dive in a functional movement pattern with squats and educate ourselves on the 5 important aspects of lifting that everyone should always keep in mind to protect our body from injury and stabilize our core properly.

The 5 L’s of Lifting:

Test the LOAD

  • The first L is for load and reminds the person of the importance of testing the weight that is being lifted. This can mean trying to tap or roll the object a few inches to assess how heavy the load you are picking up will be. Obviously always seek out mechanical or manual assistance if necessary.

Decreasing LEVER ARMS

  • The 2nd L is for lever arm and refers to the workload. The further the distance away from the body that an object is lifted, the greater the lever arm and therefore the greater the work force or load on the back.


  • This refers to the position of the lower back while you are lifting. You want to keep your back straight or in the most neutral position and have an educated instructor guide you on drawing in your transverse abdominis or lower core to stabilize the spine. This will help alleviate the stress on the back.

Lift with your LEGS

  • The 4th L is for legs which refers to your legs being the most important part of lifting. It is extremely important that you lift the weight by using your legs instead of your back.

Using your LUNGS

  • The 5th L is for lungs and refers to proper breathing techniques while you are lifting. Do not hold your breath. Inhale prior to the lift and exhale during the lift through pursed lips, slow and controlled.

Our Physical Therapy Team at Rejuv is Happy to Help!

Are you trying to improve your deadlift/squat personal record?

Do you have severe back pain that limits you from your household chores?

Does your lower back tend to flare up during any lower body activities?

If you have answered yes to any of these questions, contact us at Rejuv Medical. If you have any questions regarding proper squat and deadlift form or simply lifting objects off the ground at home to avoid chronic repetitive back pain, contact one of our Doctors of Physical Therapy. They will take you through a thorough evaluation and assessment of your functional squat and deadlift form along with a proper plan of care.