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Being active with lower back pain

I am 53 with back surgery done 15 years ago. The surgeon remove something from my S1-L5 disk.
Recent MRI show that other disk degenerate.
This is the fact.

The problem is that I have recurrent back pain triggered  by:
- fast walking
- standing longer time
- slight bending (like watching a computer screen from standing). 1 min is enough to have repercussions on my back
- carrying 5 kg for 100 m.

Here I am today, no running, playing football or other sports.

 If I am not doing any exercises I may be pain free but then I am feeling quite bad. My general health start deteriorating.

So this is what I am doing now:

- morning specific back exercises, 15 min/day
- 1 hour walking 3 times per week
- I bought an elliptic machine and I am working on it 25 min, 3 times per week.  I moved the speed and effort to the level that is acceptable for my back
- swimming 3 times per week. This is by far the best exercise ever.
- I also bought a home gym machine only for pulling mild weights but never lifting. Lifting cause me serious pain.

Pain never start during exercise but usually kicks later after rest, usually next morning.

If someone else want to comment share his experience about being active with lower back pain, will be very good.

Thank you,

 
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1

Comments

  • smartens162smartens162 Manitoba, CanadaPosts: 361
    I agree that whatever exercise you can safely do is one of the best things you can do!  I also had ruptured L5-S1 and had discectomy surgery.  My surgeon strongly advised against using the elliptical following my surgery.  He said it is a particularly stressful machine for the lower back and proper form is critical.  I haven't had the nerve to get back on mine since surgery.  I walk several days a week, 30-45 minutes at a time.  Most of the time, it eases stress on my back and I usually feel refreshed afterward.  I also go to an aqua-cise class at our local pool 3 x weekly and I really love that I can tone and strengthen my muscles without pain.  It may be hard to pinpoint what is causing grief if there is too much variety in your fitness plan.  Maybe try to simplify things for awhile, so as to identify which things are really not helping you?  All the best to you!
  • attiliodalbertoaattiliodalberto Wokingham, BerkshirePosts: 1
    Many people suffer through the back pain at this age. You are doing exercises daily, and it is good. However, I prefer acupuncture therapy. Acupuncture therapy is one of
    the traditional treatments, and I have seen many people who have got the
    benefit from the back pain.


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  • catapamcatapam AustriaPosts: 189

    smartens162 said:
     My surgeon strongly advised against using the elliptical following my surgery.  
    I am a bit confused about this. I read about eliptical machine as no impact and very good vs running concerning back protection.

    Elliptical training is a type of low-impact exercise. This is valuable to back pain. High-impact exercises, like running and jumping rope, cause excess stress throughout the spine. This jarring impact is eliminated with elliptical training, which many back pain sufferers find advantageous, according to the Spine-Health website. Once you place your feet on the foot pedals and start gliding, you feel virtually no impact at all.

    Maybe your surgeon advice was not for long time but just short time after surgery when a lot of restriction are in place.
    Any other experiences with elliptical? 

    What are other aerobic exercises do you recommend?
  • MarWinMarWin OhioPosts: 654
    Personally I'd steer clear of any impact exercises, as well as weight lifting for now. Even exercises that promote strength building (ie: physical therapy/personal trainers) can offset any gains with recovery. In my opinion it's best to first get the muscles to passively release and then get balanced before adding strengthening exercises. If you strength train imbalanced muscles, it's a safe bet that they'll strengthen in proportion to where they are now and remain imbalanced. If you only muscle balance then how do you really know when they're balanced? That's why I thinking first getting the "active" or "strong" muscles to passively release is key.  
  • catapamcatapam AustriaPosts: 189
    edited 09/09/2016 - 10:17 AM

    MarWin said:
    Personally I'd steer clear of any impact exercises, as well as weight lifting for now. Even exercises that promote strength building (ie: physical therapy/personal trainers) can offset any gains with recovery. In my opinion it's best to first get the muscles to passively release and then get balanced before adding strengthening exercises. If you strength train imbalanced muscles, it's a safe bet that they'll strengthen in proportion to where they are now and remain imbalanced. If you only muscle balance then how do you really know when they're balanced? That's why I thinking first getting the "active" or "strong" muscles to passively release is key.  
    I think your answer is to sophisticated for me.  I am not a native English speaker.
    My interest here is in some simple exercise routine that one with lower back pain can do it safely. 
    Especially when some back surgery was performed in the past.
    If you can bring more clarification to the concept you are using:  "active, strong vs passive release" would be helpful.
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  • smartens162smartens162 Manitoba, CanadaPosts: 361
    yes, the surgeon was referring to recovery-from-surgery-exercise in being against the elliptical.  Yes, it is one of the most low-impact exercise machines out there.  How do you determine what is a 'safe' recovery time?  Not everyone is great at listening to their body.  But the problem is, that with disc injury/surgery, when your body is telling you  to stop, it's often a little late!  Your back is a compromised one, having had surgery before.  So the rules and recommendations that apply to someone with a 'virgin back' are different.  I think it would be wise to get some professional advice (doctor, physiotherapist) on exercise, if the feedback on here is confusing you.  We can only make suggestions based on our personal experiences.  Take care!
  • catapamcatapam AustriaPosts: 189

    smartens162 said:
      I think it would be wise to get some professional advice (doctor, physiotherapist) on exercise, if the feedback on here is confusing you.  We can only make suggestions based on our personal experiences.  Take care!
    Feedback is OK. Elliptical machine is generally recommend by physiotherapists as low impact machine, good for people with back problems. Once I got a physiotherapist that told me bicycling is out of discussion for back pain. Later I had another one that told me bicycling is good. There is no unique solution for our problems, that why sharing your personal experience is a good thing. One can learn many useful things. That why those dedicated forums are so popular :).
  • MarWinMarWin OhioPosts: 654
    Publicly on the forum, nor privately in messaging we can't discuss specific routines. What works for one, may not work for another. I don't mind telling you what works for me though.
  • catapamcatapam AustriaPosts: 189

    MarWin said:
    Publicly on the forum, nor privately in messaging we can't discuss specific routines. What works for one, may not work for another. I don't mind telling you what works for me though.
    I don't think that sharing your exercise routine is against forum policy. I also shared mine.
    We are not advertise something, just sharing what is working for us.
    So please share with us what works for you.

    I am personally willing to stay only with walking and swimming for a while, plus specific back exercise. My back pain seems to become worst lately. 
  • LizLiz Posts: 2,265

    To all members
    Warning: Before you try any supplement, herb, over the counter item, exercise program, mechanical aid, brace, etc always consult with your doctor to make sure you get their approval. Some of these products may be very effective, but no two individuals or medical conditions are alike. What works for one, may cause trouble for another..
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