Just yesterday, I got my first REAL workout since I started lifting again and I feel great. For the last 2 weeks, I've been learning the correct form and reading up the archives to make sure I get everything right this time around. I just had a couple more questions that I couldn't find online. -When doing shrugs and curls, should I pinch my shoulder blades? -When doing squats, I read that it's I'm supposed to "explode" upwards. By explode, do they mean velocity, or power? In other words, should I shoot upwards quickly, or exert a large amount of force and move upwards smoothly? Should my back be arched or straight? -I'm still weary of doing squats and deadlifts since I have a herniated disc in my back. What is the most common reason for lower back injury due to squats and deadlifts (so I know what to avoid at all costs)? I'll probably have a couple more questions when I get back from the gym today. Thanks so far!