Friday, October 28, 2011
Back Pain and Exercise: A Good Mix?
Actually, most physicians agree that exercise improves your general health. But what kind of exercise? I asked this question since I have been a low back pain sufferer, finally having to have surgery. Thank goodness I had my back surgery using minimally invasive techniques, so my recovery was faster than that from traditional surgery. Next was physical therapy. After that, I had to think of a different type of lifestyle. So what kind of exercises are best for back pain sufferers and those who have had back surgery?
Aerobic exercising appears to be beneficial for many. This includes swimming, fast walking, cycling, using a ski machine, or an elliptical exerciser. What I have found particularly helpful is cycling on a recumbent stationary bike. These activities must be cleared with your doctor, and they may not be ideal for you if you have other physical limitations.
It is also important to stretch and strengthen your lower back muscles, abdomen, and even thighs. Again, you need to consult with your physician, physical therapist, or health club trainer as to which specific exercises are good for you individually to stretch and strengthen your muscles.
There are activities that you need to steer clear of when you have low back pain or have had back surgery. These No-No's include lifting heavy weights, squatting (also really bad if you have knee problems), climbing, running, jumping, and step aerobics. Again, it cannot be over-emphasized that you need to consult with your personal physician before starting a new exercise regimen, especially if you have not worked-out recently.
If you suffer with low back pain or have had back surgery, employing any of the above exercise tips can potentially lessen your pain level.